Here’s More Reasons to Chew on The Benefits of Fennel Seeds
Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) is a hardy, perennial, flowering herb with yellow flowers. It has feathery leaves and belongs to the carrot family. Fennel is found in many parts of the globe but it is indigenous to the Mediterranean shores. It is characterised by a highly aromatic smell. There are immense benefits of fennel seeds which have a recognisable long, thin shape and pale green colour. Fennel is a flavorful herb and its seeds are often used for cooking in dried and powdered forms. The seeds give curries, stews, and beverages a sweet licorice-like taste and aroma. Restaurants serve plain or sugar-coated fennel seeds after a meal to their customers. Fennel seeds are also known as saunf in India. There are many benefits of saunf and we will discuss some of them in this blog.
Benefits of Fennel SeedsFennel health benefits are due to the power packed nutrients. Saunf has a lot of fibre packed in tiny forms. Fennel seeds are low in calories but provide many important minerals like manganese, potassium, magnesium, and calcium etc. Let’s take a look at some of the prime benefits of fennels seeds.
- Anti Inflammatory Agent: Fennel seeds contain anethole and fenchone which act as anti inflammatory agents and help reduce inflammation. Anethole is a major component of fennel essential oil. It may soothe the swelling or irritation in the intestines. Saunf also helps in relaxing muscles in the intestines, and relieves constipation. Soothing muscles in the stomach and intestines helps to relieve gassiness because of acid reflux.
- Antimicrobial Agent: Saunf also contains components which make it act like an antimicrobial agent. It has antibacterial properties and antifungal qualities.
- Aids in Weight Loss: One of the lesser known benefits of fennel seeds is that it helps curb the appetite and aids in weight loss. A study also found out that drinking tea (250 ml water) with 2 grams of fennel seeds decreased appetite. Anethole, might be the primary component exhibiting this property.
- Better Heart Health: We discussed earlier that fennel seeds are rich in fibers. Foods which are high in fiber have been linked to a reduced risk of heart disease. Fennel seeds/ saunf is enriched with nutrients like magnesium, potassium, and calcium. These nutrients also promote good heart health.
- Helps Fight Cancer: Fennel seeds are rich in compounds which protect against chronic diseases, including certain cancers. Anethole, the main active compound in fennel seeds also exhibits cancer-fighting properties. Some studies have shown that these seeds help fight breast cancer.
- Helps Breast Feeding Women: Other than these five prominent health benefits of fennels seeds, they are also seen to benefit women who are breastfeeding. Fennel helps increase milk secretion. Research suggests that dianethole and photoanethole are responsible for the galactogenic effects of fennel. Fennel may increase blood levels of prolactin, a hormone that signals the body to produce breast milk.