Fennel Seed

Fennel Seed

Fennel is a powerful seed that originally came from the Mediterranean and is a part of the carrot family. The plant produces a small yellow flower and is very fragrant and I remember it growing in my garden as a child. Today most of the fennel that is produced by the world comes from India, where it is a culinary and ayurvedic staple.

Its benefits are manifold, both in Ayurveda and in western medicine. In fact, the little wonderful seed is so beneficial that it feels almost ridiculous to list all it has to offer. I will start with nutrition, the seed is full of nutrients including large amounts of Vitamin C and fiber with a number of minerals essential to our health from chromium to zinc. The seeds also contain healthy unsaturated fatty acids and amino acids, the very building blocks of life and our bodies.

Fennel besides containing essential nutrients also is a powerhouse of eighty seven plant compounds found to be scientifically important to our wellness. Some of these compounds include quercetin, chlorogenic acid, and apigenin. An important category of compounds in fennel is called polyphenols, which are very powerful antioxidants which when consumed in amounts that we can help you with lower the risk of chronic conditions including: heart disease, cancer, obesity, type 2 diabetes, and neurological diseases.

Anethole, another compound found in the seed, has been shown to exhibit anticancer, antiviral, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory properties. 

Wow, that’s a lot but wait, there’s more. Fennel has also been shown to increase milk production in breastfeeding mothers. It can strengthen your immune system, relieve headaches, improve intestinal function, fight anxiety, relieve menopausal symptoms, and prevent heart disease.

Taste

Almost universally, fennel is known to taste like licorice or anise, it is bright and refreshing. It is sweet with a touch of spice, being very aromatic and warm.

Side Effects

Generally safe in moderate or normal quantities. 

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