Fennel seeds- Importance & Benefits
Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare), known as Saunf in Hindi, is a type of herbaceous plant which is one to two meters long. It bears yellow flowers that have fennel seeds. The seeds are light green and look like cumin seeds.
All parts of the plant (shoots, leaves, and seeds) are aromatic and used in flavoring to enhance the taste of food. It is used in spices, pickles, Kadha, etc. in homes.
Importance of Fennel Seeds in Ayurveda
Fennel seeds are cold in potency which keeps the body cool. The nutritious elements found in the seeds help to balance Tridoshas (Vata, Pitta, Kapha). Saunf also contains minerals like calcium, sodium, iron, and potassium. The major advantage of the fennel is to increase memory. Apart from this, regular intake of fennel seeds aids digestion.
Benefits of Fennel
Helps to clean the impurities in blood-
Fennel seeds have vitamin-C, antibacterial and antiviral properties. These help in removing the toxic particles. Therefore, consuming Saunf helps in cleaning the impurities in the blood by removing toxins.
Aids in weight loss-
Fennel contains a high amount of fiber which works to control abdominal obesity. Saunf does not allow the body to freeze fat. Obesity does not increase as a result.
Helpful in controlling blood pressure-
Saunf helps control blood pressure. The potassium present in it controls the amount of sodium in the blood and prevents its side effects. Saunf also contains nitrate and potassium which reduces blood pressure.
Effective in removing skin disorders-
Saunf is very beneficial in skin-related disorders like scars, scabies, itching, spots, wrinkles, etc. It has vitamin-C, vitamin-D, vitamin-K, antioxidant, etc. properties. These help in relieving skin related problems. Besides this, Saunf cures skin problems such as pimples and acne. Apply a paste made of fennel leaves or seeds.
Helpful in controlling blood sugar level-
Low or high blood sugar levels both prove to be harmful to the body. Fennel is beneficial for controlling blood glucose. It contains antioxidants that control blood pressure in the body. Apart from this, taking Kadha made of Saunf daily is also beneficial for people suffering from diabetes.
Helps strengthen the digestive system-
Disturbances in the digestive system weaken the body’s immunity. This makes the body prone to many diseases. Regular intake of fennel helps to heal the digestive system. For this, after taking meals every day, mix sugar candy in the Saunf and consume it.
Helpful in boosting memory-
Saunf contains vitamin-B6, zinc, protein, magnesium, and flavonoids. These are the main memory-enhancing components. Therefore, Saunf intake is very beneficial for brain development and memory enhancement. Making Saunf tea also enhances memory and reduces mental stress.
Relief in stomach disorders-
Many diseases such as abdominal pain, bloating, gas and acidity affect the whole body. People use Saunf as a home remedy to get rid of these diseases. Consuming Saunf powder with lukewarm water relieves stomach disorders.
Side-effects of Fennel seeds
- After excessive intake of Saunf, exposure to sunlight causes skin spots and rashes.
- Saunf is cold in potency. Therefore, avoid fennel intake in problems of constipation.
- Breastfeeding women should avoid Saunf intake.
- People with hypersensitivity should avoid intake of fennel.
- When taking any type of medicine, take Saunf according to the advice of the doctor.
Uses of Fennel seeds?
- Ginger powder mixed in Saunf seeds and leaves is used as a tea.
- People use Saunf for enhancing the taste of chutney.
- Saunf is used in pickles and spices.
- Saunf adds aroma and taste to curries and parathas.
- Leaves of Saunf are also used to prepare juice.
- Mishri mixed with Saunf are excellent mouth fresheners.
- Saunf, almond, and black pepper are used to make Kadha.
- Fennel also enhances the taste of various north Indian cuisines.
Cultivation of Fennel?
Fennel is native to Southern Europe and Southwestern parts of Asia. People consider it a weed in Australia and also in the regions of the United States.
Cultivation of Saunf in India happens in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh. It is also cultivated in Bihar, Andhra Pradesh, and Karnataka.