Fennel seeds, commonly called saunf, are a typical ingredient in Indian recipes. The long, greenish, dried seed has a sweet, aromatic scent. It adds a slightly sweet taste to the food, similar to anise. Fennel seeds also serve as a digestive aid and refreshment after meals. Apart from serving as a breath freshener, they are rich in essential oils, vitamins, and minerals and offer diverse health benefits. Chewing on 2-3 fennel seeds after meals or dissolving Gas-O-Fast's Active Saunf in water and drinking it once a day improves immunity.
Health benefits of regular saunf consumption
Fennel has been used in India for centuries. While the rich used it to enhance the aroma and taste of dishes, the poor chewed on the seeds to keep hunger at bay. All parts of the fennel plant are beneficial – the stalks are consumed as vegetables, the leaves are sautéd with onions and served as a side dish, fennel oil is applied on fruits and vegetables to prevent fungal growth, the nectar of the flower aids in apiculture and fennel powder keeps fleas away. India in a major cultivator and exporter of fennel.
Fennel seeds have ananti-inflammatory essential oil called anethole. It combats indigestion and acidity. Estragole and fenechone are essential oils with anti-spasmodic properties. They aid in digestion by stimulating the production and secretion of gastric enzymes. Saunf is also greatly beneficial to people suffering from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
Regular consumption of fennel seeds helps bring relief to sinus and asthma patients. Fennel seeds are rich in phytonutrients which pacify inflamed sinuses. It also has expectorant properties and hence offers releif in cases of cough and congestion.
Chewing fennel seeds increase the nitrite content in saliva which leads to a decrease in blood pressure. The essential oils and fibers flush out the toxins present in the bloodstream and purify the blood. The fiber present in the seeds bind themselves to bile salts, also known as cholesterol, and prevent them from clogging arteries. Hence, heart-related disorders are prevented.
Vitamin A keeps the eye healthy and ensures proper vision. Vitamin A is one of the vitamins present in the storehouse of fennel seeds. In earlier days, Indians used to chew fennel seeds toimprove the symptoms of glaucoma.
Essential oils such as quercetin and kaempferol help in fighting the signs of aging i.e. wrinkles, dark spots, dry skin, etc. by preventing degenerative reactions from occurring. Drinking fennel tea helps reduce acne. The presence of minerals like zinc, calcium, and selenium regulate hormone and oxygen balance. Vitamin C that is present in fennel seeds The skin is revitalized by.
Problems exclusive to women
Saunf is rich in iron, Vitamin K, folic acid and Vitamin C. These nutrients decrease anemia which is a common problem among females. Fennel seeds also increase the production of breast milk in nursing mothers. Osteoporosis is a bone disorder that many women face in old age. Regular consumption of iron, zinc, phosphorus, manganese, calcium, magnesium, and Vitamin K reduce the chances of osteoporosis and bone-related disorders. Fennel seeds have reserves that are rich in these minerals. It is also a source of the hormone estrogen.
Ayurvedic sciences also highlight the benefits of saunf. Fennel seeds strengthen the agni without disturbing pitta. It is a tridoshic herb i.e. it finds a balance between pitta, vata, and kapha. The sattvic qualities of saunf refresh and sharpen the mind. Mental alertness is also increased.
Ways to integrate saunf in the daily diet
Regular consumption of saunf can boost your immunity and overall health in several ways. Saunf can be integrated into the diet in different ways – from teas to salads. The health benefits range across a broad spectrum. Moreover, fennel seeds are pleasing to the tongue and gut.
Fennel is not hard to come by and all parts of the plant can be effectively used. Therefore, it is advisable to make it a part of one's lifestyle.