Fennel seeds are also known as Saunf. It can often be confused with Cumin seeds (jeera) because of the similarity in size and shape. They have a distinct taste and smell and a lot of Indians consume this after a meal just as a mouth freshener. Well, these seeds are highly beneficial for both culinary and health purposes.
Let’s have a look into some of the benefits of fennel seeds:
1. Helps improve digestion:
Consuming fennel seeds can help stimulate the secretion of digestive juices and gastric enzymes in turn helping to improve one’s digestion. Fennel seeds contain organic compounds like anethole, fenchone and estragole. These organic compounds have antispasmodic and anti-inflammatory properties. Fennel seeds can therefore relieve constipation (as it has laxative properties), Irritable Bowel syndrome (IBS), indigestion and bloating. Chew on half a teaspoon of fennel seeds after meals to aid digestion.
2. Can suppress appetitive leading to weight loss:
Fennel seeds tea or fennel seeds water is generally consumed on an empty stomach as it can help weight loss and also suppress appetite to a large extent, in turn decreasing the number of calories one intakes as the food consumption is lesser because of the suppressed appetite and food cravings. Fennel tea consumption can help keep the digestive tract clean and healthy.
3. It can help combat bad breath:
Like mentioned earlier, fennel seeds are often eaten raw after a meal as they have refreshment properties and can act as a mouth freshener and combat bad breath. Fennel seeds can increase the secretion of saliva, which helps kill harmful bacteria in the mouth. So simply just munch on a few fennel seeds can help do the trick!
4. Good for heart health and blood pressure:
Fennel seeds are packed with fibre and can reduce the risk of heart disease and high cholesterol. Fennel seeds contain nutrients like magnesium, potassium and calcium. These types of nutrients can help play a major role in keeping the heart healthy.
5. Can help fight cancer:
Fennel seeds are highly antioxidant in nature and can help the body fight against free radicals (particles which are known to damage the healthy cells in our body) and beat oxidative stress. One of the major organic compounds found in fennel seeds is anethole, which are known for having cancer fighting properties. READ MORE – BASIL SEEDS WATER for glowing skin and healthy hair
6. General health benefits:
- Cools down the body: Fennel has a cooling effect on the body and drinking fennel seeds water can help cool down the body’s heat. It can also cool down the nerves and uplift the mood, as it is good for mental health.
- Can help improve eye sight: Fennel seeds contain vitamin A which is good for the eyes and eye health.
- Diuretic in nature: Diuretics can help increase the amount of water and salt expelled from the body as urine, in turn flushing out the toxins from the body, acting like a detoxifier.
- Good for acne prevention and skin health: It can improve skin appearance and increase skin cell longevity. It is abundant in minerals such as potassium, calcium, zinc and selenium. It can balance hormones and regulate the oxygen balance in your bloodstream. It can also treat skin ailments like acne, rashes, dryness etc.
- Purifies the blood: As the fibres in fennel seeds can purify the blood and flush out all the toxins from the body.
- Good for respiratory problems: As it has high amounts of phytonutrients (natural plant compounds) which can help clear the sinuses and offer bronchial relaxation and relives congestion.
Here are two ways you can consume fennel seeds for quick effects:
- 1 tsp raw fennel seeds
- 1 cup of hot water
Method: In a cup, add in one tsp of fennel seeds and then top the cup with hot water. Please see that the water is not boiling hot, but just hot enough. Then, give it a slight mix and cover the cup and let it sit for around 10 to 15 minutes. When you take off the lid after 10 to 15 minutes, the seeds would have swollen as the water would have got infused into the seeds and the colour of the water would have turned into light green. Then, the fennel tea is ready to consume, just the way it is, without having to strain out the seeds, as consuming the seeds is good for health.
Tip: Consume this on an empty stomach 30 – 45 minutes before breakfast, as it can help reduce fat storage and fennel tea is best drunk on an empty stomach.
- 1 tsp raw fennel seeds
- 1 cup of water
Method: In a cup, add in one tsp of fennel seeds and then top the cup with room temperature water. Then, give it a slight mix and cover the cup and let it sit for around 8 to 10 hours (it could be overnight). Then after 8 to 10 hours, the fennel water is ready to consume, just the way it is, without having to strain out the seeds, as consuming the seeds is good for health.
Tip: Consume this on an empty stomach 30 – 45 minutes before breakfast, as it can help reduce fat storage and fennel tea is best drunk on an empty stomach. READ MORE –Pumpkin Seeds for hair growth, weight loss, good sleep and more
Caution: Pregnant mothers and people on anti-biotics are advised against drinking fennel tea or fennel water.