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Fennel : Health Benefits, Uses, Dosage and Side Effects

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By NS Desk 25-Nov-2020

Fennel

Also known as Saunf in Hindi, Fennel seeds are some of the most popular Indian spices. Fennel seeds, if inserted into a regular diet, will benefit your health immensely. Fennel seeds have been in use since ancient times and are used for various activities. The advantages of Fennel seeds are manifold. The seeds have a very sweet-and-bitter type of taste.  Besides health benefits, Fennel seeds also have a lot of culinary benefits. 

If you are suffering from problems related to digestion, Fennel seeds can help you a lot. Fennel seeds are equipped with a component known as "Anethole," which will improve your digestive activities. A lot of health professionals recommend chewing some fennel seeds after meals. Anethole is also very beneficial for lactating women as it can boost breast milk secretion. These seeds are jam-packed with Vitamin C, the deficiency of which may result in health problems. You can also consume these seeds for preventing constipation, bloating, colic. If you are feeling nauseous or sick, these seeds can help you feel better.  Many people even consume Fennel seeds regularly to manage their weight. During menstruation cycles, these seeds can be included in the diet to help prevent menstrual cramps. This is due to the fact that Fennel seeds aid in reducing uterine contractions. The diuretic property of these seeds can prove beneficial against kidney and bladder ailments. If your eye is injured, which has resulted in an inflammation of the same, it can be reduced with the help of some cotton soaked in Fennel seed water. 

Fennel seeds are popularly known as “Saunf” in Hindi and Punjabi. Meanwhile, fennel seeds are known as “Variari” and “Badi-sopu" in Gujarati and Kannada, respectively. In Marathi, Fennel seeds are referred to as "Badishep." Used excessively in Bengal, fennel seeds are referred to as "Pan," "Muhiri," and "Mauri" in Bengali. These fennel seeds are known by other names such as Shaleen, Madhurika, Kattusatkuppa, Madesi Saunf, Bitter Fennel, Aslul, Rajyana, Panamadhuri, Badi sopu, Sabbsige, Aslul ejiyanaj, among others. Scientifically known as Foeniculum vulgare Miller, the uses of Fennel seeds remain the same throughout the different regions. Fennel seeds serve as one of the key ingredients in “Paanch Phoran Masala," which is used extensively throughout the country for cooking a vast array of dishes. People also tend to include Fennel seeds in their diets in other forms because of all the health benefits these seeds have to offer.

History

Fennel is a cooling spice, as opposed to most spices that are hot in nature. Fennel seeds, therefore, are grown across the Northern States of India as a cold climate crop. It is widely speculated that fennel seeds have been in use since ancient times. Apparently, ancient Greeks referred to this item as "Marathon."  Pheidippides, the messenger who warned Sparta of the Persian attack, was gifted with fennel seeds for his accomplishments. Greeks and Romans used these seeds for their medicinal and culinary values. In recent times, countries such as India, the USA, France, and Russia have emerged as top cultivators of these items.

Benefits of Fennel Seeds in Ayurvedic Treatment

There are so many advantages of incorporating Fennel seeds in your daily diet. Even in ancient times, these seeds were used for providing relief from various ailments. The popularity of Fennel seeds keeps growing exponentially, owing to its proven benefits. Let's look at some of the advantages of Fennel seeds.

Benefits of Fennel Seeds for Flatulence

Modern Scientific View

Ayurvedic View:

 

Fennel seeds help regulate our intestines' movement of smooth muscles through the carminative property that these seeds possess. As a result of this regulation, the trapped gas is dissipated, and people can get relief from flatulence. Fennel seeds can also help combat indigestion and bloating.

 

According to the view of ayurvedists, Fennel Seeds possess “Deepan” (Appetizer) and “Pachan” (digestive) properties, which can help in fighting flatulence.

 

Benefits of Fennel Seeds for Constipation

Modern Scientific View

Ayurvedic View

Fennel seeds serve as the source of dietary fiber, which is essential for our digestive system's good functioning. Consuming fennel seeds will improve digestive activities and help combat constipation.

People working in Ayurveda's field swear by the benefits of Fennel seeds due to its multiple advantages.

Benefits of Fennel Seeds for Colicky Pain

Modern Scientific View

Ayurvedic View

Accumulation of gas in the intestines may result in severe pain in the abdomen. This is a very common problem in breastfed infants. The presence of "Anethole” in these seeds relieves the pain by relaxing the intestinal smooth muscles and releasing the trapped gas. Fennel seeds can help prevent colic pain in babies. However, it is better to consult a doctor before allowing your children to have fennel seeds.

Fennel seeds possess the properties of Deepan and Pachan, which can help relieve colic pain in babies

Benefits of Fennel Seeds against Menstrual Pain

Modern Scientific View

Ayurvedic View

 Fennel seeds can lessen cramping during Menstruation.  Fennel seeds come equipped with the estrogenic property, which can help reduce the frequency of uterine contractions. 

 Ayurvedic studies suggest that Fennel seeds can lessen menstrual pain by balancing the "Vata Dosha."

  •  Benefits of Fennel seeds for Bronchitis 

Scientific View 

Ayurvedic View 

Fennel seeds contain "Anethole." It is a component that gives way to bronchodilatory property in people. Consuming fennel seeds on a regular basis can relax the muscles in the lungs and widen the airway. 

There aren't many Ayurvedic studies about Fennel seeds with respect to Bronchitis. However, Ayurvedic studies point towards other benefits of Fennel seeds. 

  • Benefits of Fennel Seeds for Respiratory Tract Infection

Scientific View 

Ayurvedic View 

Upper respiratory tract infections can be reduced with the consumption of Fennel seeds. This is due to the presence of "Anethole," which can clear mucus from the respiratory tract. This can help people to breathe easier by reducing congestion in the respiratory tract. 

Ayurvedic studies also point towards the huge benefits of Fennel seeds when it comes to any kind of sickness. 

Recommended Dosages of Barley to help prevent Diseases

  • ¼ to ½ teaspoon of Fennel seeds twice a day can work wonders for your body. 
  • A lot of studies recommend that ¼ to ½ teaspoon of Fennel seeds powder can be extremely beneficial. 
  • Fennel seeds capsules can be taken twice a day in the quantity of 1-2.
  • Children above six years can consume 2-4 teaspoon of Fennel seed Ark on a regular basis. Adults, meanwhile, can 6-10 teaspoons on a day-to-day basis.

How Can Fennel Seeds be used or consumed?

  • Dry Fennel seeds

Taking dry fennel seeds regularly can be very helpful.

Tips:

  1. Consume ½-1 teaspoon Fennel seeds on a daily basis. 
  2. Chew them thoroughly to derive the best results.  
  • Powdered Fennel Seeds

Fennel seeds can be consumed in powdered form on a day-to-day basis in order to get the best results. 

Tips: 

  1. Take ½ - 1 teaspoon of Fennel seeds powder and mix it in a glass of lukewarm water. 
  2. Drink this concoction twice a day. 
  3. Continue doing this for 2-3 months to derive better results. 
  • Fennels Seeds Ark

Tips:

  1. Children above 6 years of age can consume 2-4 teaspoons of Saunf ark mixed in a similar water quantity. 
  2. Adults can consume 6-10 teaspoons of Saunf Ark on a day-to-day basis.
  • Fennel Seeds Tea

Fennel seeds tea is another way of consuming fennel seeds, and people can obtain great relief from consuming this concoction. Fennel seeds tea can be very beneficial against intestinal gas.

Tips:

  1. Take 2 teaspoons of Fennel seeds and 1.5 cups of water inside a pan.
  2. Add some crushed ginger to the above solution.
  3. Boil the concoction on a medium flame for 5-7 mins
  4. Strain the solution and drink

 

  • Fennel seeds infused water.

Water infused with Fennel seeds can help in facilitating weight loss and can also boost metabolism. 

Tips:

  1. Pour a glass of water into a pan and bring it to a boil.
  2. Pour the boiled water into a glass and add 2 teaspoons of Fennels seeds to the same.
  3. Let the Fennel seeds infused water sit overnight.
  4. Drink this water in the morning to derive health benefits 

Precautionary Guide while consuming Fennel Seeds:

For Epileptic patients

  • View of Science Experts

Science experts suggest that consumption of Fennel seeds may lead to a seizure. Hence, Epileptic patients are advised to seek a doctor's advice before consuming Fennel seeds and other medicines for epilepsy.

For Other Interactions 

  • View of Science Experts

Birth control pills contain estrogen. If taken along with Fennel seeds, the estrogenic properties of Fennel seeds might decrease its effectiveness. Therefore, an additional form of birth control may come in handy in these scenarios. 

FAQs about Fennel Seeds

  • How do you prepare Fennel Seeds Tea? 

View of Science Experts:

Fennel Seeds tea can be very helpful against intestinal gas. Here's how you can prepare Fennel Seeds tea. 

Tips:

  1.   Pour the required amount of water and bring it to a boil. 
  2. Crush a teaspoon of Fennel Seeds using a mortar and pestle.
  3.  Bring out the crushed seeds and place them inside a cup.
  4. Pour the boiling water into the cup and cover the same. 
  5. Let the tea sit for 10 minutes before consuming it. 
  6. Amplify the taste of the tea by adding some honey
  • Are Fennel Seeds and Anise the same thing? 

View of Science Experts 

Anise and Fennel seeds look similar. Also, both Anise and Fennel Seeds are used to add flavor to dishes. However, both come from very different plants. Anise, as compared to Fennel Seeds, is more pungent. Anise is a stronger spice, and people don't prefer chewing it. 

  • How can the Consumption of Fennel Seeds help in Weight Loss?

View of Science Experts

Fennel seeds aid weight loss by reducing hunger pangs. Our digestion is improved as a result of Fennel Seeds consumption. Thanks to an improved digestive system, absorbing nutrients becomes much easier. Therefore, you are satisfied, and hunger pangs also reduce gradually.

View of Ayurvedic Experts

"Ama" refers to toxic remains in our body due to improper digestion at different levels. This can increase weight. According to Ayurvedic studies, Fennel seeds can reduce Ama's production through its Deepan (appetizer) and Pachan (digestive) properties. 

Tips: 

  1. Dry roast a cup of Fennel seeds for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Grind the seeds and store the same in an air-tight container.
  3. Take a glass of water and pour ½ teaspoon of Fennel powder into it.
  4. Continue this process for 2-3 months to dereive better results.

Or

Chew some fennel seeds after your meals on a day-to-day basis to speed up digestion.

 

  • Can Fennel Seeds boost Breast Milk Production?

View of Science Experts:

Lactating mothers consume fennel seeds in order to boost the production of breast milk. “Anethole” possess galactogenic activity that increases the milk-secreting hormone “Prolactin." As a result of these secretions, the flow of milk also improves alongside the milk's quantity and quality. However, the advice of a doctor is recommended before taking fennel seeds during lactation.

View of Ayurvedic Experts:

According to Ayurvedic studies, Fennel seeds have Balya property that can boost milk production in lactating mothers.

Tips:

  1. Boil 2-3 teaspoons of Fennel seeds in ½ to 1 liter of drinking water.
  2. Let it boil for 5-6 minutes before consuming it.
  3. Let it cool down and amplify the taste with a teaspoon of mishri or rock candy.
  4. Stir it well and consume 2-3 cups of this water on a day-to-day basis.

 

  • How do Fennel Seeds help in Breast Enlargement?

View of Science Experts

Many studies suggest that Fennel seeds can boost the overall size of breasts to a certain extent. According to a lot of scientific studies, Fennel seeds contain Phytoestrogens, which are estrogenic substances. These substances are proven to mimic the features of female hormones so that it may boost breast tissue growth. However, there is not enough evidence to support this feature of Fennel Seeds.

  • Can Fennel Seeds help Baby?

View of Science Experts

Fennel Seeds are considered to be good for babies because it can provide relief from Flatulence in babies.

View of Ayurvedic Experts

Ayurvedic studies suggest that Saunf Ark possesses Deepan (appetizer) and Pachan (digestive) properties. These Fennel Seeds can provide relief from Flatulence.

Or

It is advised that children above 6 years of age must consume 2-4 teaspoons of Saunf ark mixed with water. This concoction can be taken twice a day.

 

  • Are Fennel Seeds effective against Colicky Pain?

View of Science Experts

A severe abdominal pain, Colicky Pain, is caused as a result of the accumulation of gas in the intestines. Breastfed babies can fall prey to this kind of pain. According to Scientific studies, the presence of Anethole in Fennel Seeds can relax intestinal smooth muscles.

 

View of Ayurvedic Experts

The Deepan and Pachan properties of Fennel Seeds have proven very beneficial for humans.

  •  

1.  Add water to Saunf ark, an ayurvedic concoction, and give it to your baby 45 minutes after a meal.

2.  Repeat this process twice a day.

  • Can People with Hormone Sensitivity consume Fennel Seeds?

View of Science Experts

People with hormone-sensitive conditions such as Breast Cancer, Uterine Cancer, Endometriosis, Ovarian Cancer, among others, should avoid Fennel Seeds. The estrogenic properties of Fennel Seeds can worsen your situation.

  • What are the Benefits of Fennel Seeds infused Water?

View of Science Experts

Fennel seeds are jam-packed with a lot of components that can improve health conditions in humans. Drinking Fennel Seeds infused water can boost breast milk production in lactating mothers.

Also, Fennel Seeds possess Diuretic Properties that can boost urine production and prevent urinary diseases. Fennel seeds or leaves boiled in water can manage nausea and stomach heat.

View of Ayurvedic Experts

Ayurvedic experts suggest that Fennel Seeds are essential for improving digestive activities in humans. The Deepan and Pachan properties of Fennel seeds can digest Ama. The Mutual or Diuretic Property of Fennel seeds can help in proper Urine flow.

  • Can Fennel Seeds Improve Digestion?

View of Science Experts

Science experts suggest that Fennel Seeds are packed with components that can relax our gastrointestinal system's smooth muscles and prevent problems such as Bloating and Stomach Cramps.

View of Ayurvedic experts

The Deepan and Pachan properties of Fennel Seeds can help digest food as well as Ama.

Consuming Fennel Seeds on a day-to-day basis can help solve a lot of digestive problems. People suffering from Constipation can consume Fennel Seeds on a regular basis to rid themselves of these problems.

    1. Dry roast a cup of fennel seeds in a pan for 2-3 minutes. Grind it into a smooth powder and store the powder in an air-tight container.
    2.   Take a glass of lukewarm water and mix some fennel powder to the same. Drink this concoction before going to bed.
    3. Repeat this process for a month to derive better results.

The dietary fiber's presence relieves constipation by increasing the bulk of the stool and pushing it out smoothly.

  • How can Fennel Seeds help in reducing Bad Breath?

View of Science Experts

The antimicrobial properties of Fennel Seeds can help combat bad breath. These seeds can put an end to the growth of bacteria in the mouth and prevent bad breath. People can chew Fennel Seeds slowly in order to increase the production of saliva in the mouth.

  • Does Consumption of Fennel infuse Tea benefit People?

View of Science Experts

Drinking Fennel Seeds infused tea can boost your appetite. It also offers some much-needed relief from indigestion. Drinking Fennel Tea every day can reduce the risks of Asthma, Cough, and Bronchitis in humans. Fennel Tea can also be consumed to combat eye inflammation.

View of Ayurvedic Experts

The Deepan and Pachan Properties of Fennel Infused Tea can help in improving digestion in humans. The Medhya Property of Fennel seeds is beneficial for our brains.

Tips:

  1.  Add 2 teaspoons of Fennel seeds into 1.5 cups of water in a pan.
  2. Add some crushed ginger into the concoction.
  3. Boil it on a medium flame for 5-7 minutes.
  4. Strain this concoction and drink it.
  5. This Fennel infused tea can help combat gas or Flatulence.
  • How can Fennel Seeds help in Skin Lightening?

View of Science Experts

Fennel seeds possess a lot of beneficial constituents and antioxidants. These components can fight against free radicals and prevent damage to cells. As a result, people can get glowing skin, which further slows down the aging process.

The anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties of Fennel Seeds can inhibit swelling and skin infections. Fennel seeds stimulate estrogen receptors. Thus, consuming Fennel seeds regularly can manage acne and improve skin tone.

View of Ayurvedic Experts

Ayurvedic experts believe that increased pigmentation of the skin occurs due to imbalanced Pitta dosha in humans. This Pitta Balancing Property of Fennel Seeds can boost skin lightening in humans. It can reduce the pigmentation of the skin, which further lightens skin.

  • How do Fennel Seeds help against Flatulence or Gas Formation?

View of Science Experts

Science experts believe that the carminative properties of Fennel Seeds can help in the regulation of smooth muscles in our intestines. Fennel seeds can be effective against problems of indigestion and bloating.

View of Ayurvedic Experts

The Deepan and Pachan properties of Fennel Seeds are very effective against flatulence, and consuming Fennel Seeds on a regular basis can provide great relief from flatulence.

  1. Crush one teaspoon of fennel seeds using a mortar and pestle.
  2.     Add the crushed seeds to a glass of water and pour it into a pan. Wait until the water comes to boil and then simmer it until the water becomes half.
  3. Strain the hot water and wait for it to reduce to a warm temperature.
  4.   Add a teaspoon of honey to the water.
  5.  Drink this concoction once a day. Continue this process for 1-2 months to achieve better results.
    1. You can incorporate fennel seeds into your daily life by taking ½ teaspoon of fennel seeds after your meals twice a day. You can have the seeds with mishri or rock candy.
consult with ayurveda doctor.
Disclaimer - The aim of the article is just to convey information to you. Use any medicine, therapy, herb or fruit please do it under the guidance of a qualified Ayurveda doctor.
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