Fennel is used as an herb and spice to add a hint of sweetness to many dishes, both sweet and savory. Every part of this plant can be used in cooking and alternative medicine, but the seeds are often the easiest to find and put to use in your life. They can be picked up at the spice aisle of any grocery store. Add them to dishes, chew them after meals, or steep them in water for a pleasant and soothing tea.
Fennel seeds have a similar flavor to licorice and anise and are naturally sweet. These seeds are rich in flavonoids that act as antioxidants to protect against free radical damage, combat cancer, slow degenerative diseases, and reduce oxidative stress to the cardiovascular system. Fennel seeds also have anti-inflammatory properties to reduce pain, especially associated with the symptoms of arthritis. They are rich in fiber that helps to reduce cholesterol, aid digestion, detoxify the body, and balance blood sugar. Fennel seeds are a very good source of the minerals calcium, iron, potassium, manganese, magnesium, and copper with essential vitamins like C, A, and several of the B vitamins.
Digestion – 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.
Sight – Fennel was considered an herb for eyesight in ancient India and Rome. Extracts have shown some promise in improving the symptoms of glaucoma. They also contain vitamin A, which is important to eyesight.
Brain – Fennel has beneficial effects on memory and cognitive function.
PMS – Fennel seeds are anti-spasmodic and help reduce pain, cramping, bloating, and gas. They also contain phytoestrogens that can help balance hormones.
Breast Feeding – Fennel promotes the production and secretion of milk. This milk will also reduce gas for the baby, especially helpful with colic. Fennel seeds should not be taken in large amounts during pregnancy, though they are considered safe in regular recipes.
Lungs – Fennel seeds and their phytonutrients reduce asthma symptoms and help clear the sinuses. They make a great tea to aid with bronchitis, congestion, and cough as they have expectorant properties.
Blood – The fiber and essential oils in fennel seeds helps the body remove toxins. It is considered a blood cleanser.
Breath – Fennel seeds are consumed after meals in many counties to aid digestion and improve breath. Fennel sweetens breath, kills bacteria, and fights halitosis naturally.
*Fennel and fennel seeds are considered safe in the amounts used in food and tea. Very large doses have been linked to hallucinations and seizures. It is inadvisable to consume fennel if you have epilepsy or any other seizure disorder.Learn more about Charlie Pulsipher