Fennel seeds with a sweet liquorice taste, and strong unique flavour. There are many health benefits using fennel seeds, some of which we share below.
Fennel seeds are defined as the dried yellowish brown schizocarpic fruits that are obtained from the plant of fennel, a perennial herb in the genus ‘Foeniculum’. In India, saunf or fennel seeds are a very popular natural mouth freshner. Every restaurant keeps a bowl of this mouth freshner near its reception so that guests can pick up a handful on their way out. Some people also keep a jar of saunf at home so that they can have a little after every meal. It is also used as spice to season many dishes.
Origin and Classification
Native to Southern Europe and grown all over Europe, Middle-Eastern, China, India, and Turkey, Fennel is scientifically known as foeniculum vulgare, belonging to the family of parsley or umbelliferae. A hardy, perennial, umbelliferous herb, with yellow flowers and feathery leaves this herbaceous plant reaches up to 2 meters (about 6 feet) in height. Technically, “fennel seeds” are not seeds at all but the dried fruit of the plant popularly known as fennel seed. The seeds are usually allowed to dry on the plant, which is gently shaken over dishes or clothes to release the seeds once they have matured fully.
Medicinal Uses and Benefits:
The fiber in fennel seeds acts as a cleanser in the digestive system and aids in the formation of bile. Essential oils in these seeds help ease muscle spasms, reduce inflammation, ease gas, and even destroy bad bacteria to keep everything moving smoothly.
The kind of lifestyle we lead makes us accumulate lots of toxins in our body. To get rid of them, you need to chew on these raw seeds. It expels uric acid from the blood and is great for patients of arthritis. In fact, Saunf contains a special essential oil that helps get rid of the toxic elements from the blood.
We all live because we breathe. So it is absolutely essential to make sure that we are able to breathe well. Fennel contains chemicals called Anethol and Cineole which help in curing lung congestion and normal cough and cold. It is good for people who have allergic bronchitis or asthma.
Fennel seeds are beneficial for brain. According to the Indian researchers, fennel seeds have the ability to enhance cognitive performance.
Heart health is aided by fiber, folate, potassium, vitamin C, B-6 and phytonutrients. Fennel contains all of these heart healthy contents while also being free of cholesterol. And if you already have high cholesterol, the fiber in fennel will help to lower it. The vitamin B-6 and folate play an important role in making sure the vessel damaging homocysteine doesn’t build up.
Condiment Of Memory
All the stress in our life has made dementia and other brain disorders our biggest fear. Guess what, this condiment can actually help you keep brain related diseases at bay. Fennel improves the cognitive functions of the brain too.
According to Ancient Romans fennel was a herb of sight and the root extracts were often used to clear cloudy eyes. Using fennel in food prevents inflammation of the eyes and age related, macular degeneration. Due to the antibacterial qualities of fennel seeds, traditional herbalists used the seeds externally as an eyewash to reduce inflammation of the eyes. According to recent researches, fennel seeds have the ability to cure glaucoma.
Fennel seeds for Women
Fennel seeds act as an excellent remedy for those suffering from PMS symptoms and menstrual pain known as dysmenorrhoea. Fennel seeds also include galactagogue property, which promotes production and secretion of milk in lactating mothers and as such milk has some properties of fennel which act as anti flatulent for the baby. If breast-fed child has problems of indigestion or colic, then boiling 2 tablespoons fennel powder with 200gm water-cooled and administered two to three times to the baby helps ease the problem.