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Fennel Seeds: Health Benefits and Medicinal value

Fennel Seeds: Health Benefits and Medicinal value

Most commonly known as ‘saunf', this spice is most cherished after a meal by all of us, but little do we know about its health and medical benefits.

Fennel seeds are a kind of spice used in most Mediterranean cuisines. They are 3-4mm long, tiny and oval in shape, and available all round the year.

Health Benefits:

• Fennel along with its medicinal values is rich in antioxidants, minerals, dietary fibers, essential compounds and vitamins.
• It contains a lot of dietary fiber which helps to increase the bulk of food, thus easing constipation. The dietary fiber also helps reduce LDL cholesterol.
• Flavonoid antioxidants present in fennel seeds helps remove harmful free radicals from the body, thus protecting us from cancers, infections and aging.
• Fennel seeds are a concentrated source of minerals like iron and copper needed for the production and formation of red blood cells. It also contains zinc, magnesium and potassium which act as co-factors needed for the growth, development, digestion, control of heart rate and blood pressure.
• It also contains vital vitamins like vitamin-A, vitamin-E, vitamin-C and B complex vitamins essential for the normal functioning of our body.

Medicinal value:

• It has a balancing effect on the female reproductive system.
• It is used as a remedy for flatulence and indigestion in traditional medicines.
• Fennel is used for loss of appetite and colic in infants.
• It is also used for upper respiratory tract infections, coughs, bronchitis, cholera, backache, bedwetting, and visual problems.
• Some women use fennel to increase the flow of breast milk, easing the birthing process, and increases sex drive.

Avoid using fennel seeds in large doses as it may cause hallucinations and seizures. It is better if pregnant women avoid eating fennel seeds in large amounts.