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Food & Nutrition

Health Benefits of Fennel For Moms To-Be & Kids

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  • October 1, 2021
  • MKB Team

Herbs are popular in both medicinal and culinary uses. They have several beneficial compounds which can potentially boost human health. Fennel is an aromatic herb that has been used for a long time for its wide array of benefits.

 

As a member of the carrot family, fennel is related to other aromatic herbs like cumin, dill and anise. They have a similar kind of aroma and sweetness just like anise. Fennel has a long medical and culinary history. 

Almost all parts of fennel plants including shoots, leaves, seeds and flowers are edible and used in flavouring foods. The seeds are used in baking bread and biscuits; the stems are eaten as a vegetable and the leaves are used in salads; and the essential oil from the fennel seeds are used in cosmetics, foods, medicines and perfumes. Fennel seeds are also used as an important spice throughout the world.   

Here is the nutritional profile of fennel seeds.

Nutritional Profile

100 gm of fennel seed have:

  •         8.81 gm water
  •         345 calories
  •         15.8 gm protein
  •         14.9 gm fat
  •         52.3 gm carbohydrates
  •         39.8 gm fiber
  •         1200 mg calcium
  •         1690 mg potassium
  •         487 mg phosphorus
  •         385 mg magnesium
  •         88 mg sodium
  •         21 mg Vitamin C

Fennel seeds also have minerals like zinc, copper, manganese and selenium; vitamins like Vitamin A, Vitamin K. Vitamin B6, folate, niacin, riboflavin and thiamine.

The Many Health Benefits of Fennel for Kids and Adults:

Improves bone health: Rich in calcium and potassium, fennel support healthy bone structure. Potassium helps to build stronger bones and teeth by improving calcium retention in the body. On the other hand, Vitamin K plays an important role in keeping the bones functioning. Vitamin K in fennel reduces the risks related to osteoporosis and fracture.

Reduces inflammation: Although inflammation is natural in the human body, chronic inflammation can result in several serious health issues like diabetes and liver conditions. You should keep inflammation under control to improve overall health. Fennel essential oil has several beneficial polyphenol compounds which are anti-inflammatory in nature.  These polyphenol antioxidants can protect you from chronic inflammatory diseases.

Manages blood pressure: Patients with high blood pressure should control their sodium intake. However, increasing potassium intake can also help in managing blood pressure as potassium plays important role in the contraction of blood vessels. Consumption of recommended dosage of potassium regularly can bring the high blood pressure significantly down.

Cures bad breath: Fennel seeds have aromatic properties and the essential oils in fennel seed are anti-bacterial in nature. It can kill bad breath causing bacteria in your mouth and give a fresh breath. If you are struggling with bad breath, just start munching few fennel seeds regularly. You will see the results instantly.

Benefits of Consuming Fennel during Pregnancy:

During pregnancy, women suffer from various kinds of minor health hazards which can be dealt with with simple home remedies. Fennel has been an important part of home remedies due to its wide range of medicinal properties.   

Improves digestive system: Fennel essential oil can boost the secretion of digestive juices and enzymes in your body. This can do wonders in reducing constipation, bloating and other digestive issues. Fennel also has anti-inflammatory properties that can soothe your inflamed digestive tract to promote digestive health. You can try fennel try, especially before bed, to see better results with indigestion.

Aids weight management: Studies have found that anethole, a compound present in fennel, can be effective in suppressing appetite. It can reduce the hunger pangs and cravings during pregnancy which can reduce the chances of unnecessary weight gain. Fennel seeds also boost metabolism which can further aid weight loss.  

Helps with breastfeeding: Fennel may help to breastfeed women as it has a compound named anethole which can mimic estrogens. Fennel promotes lactation in pregnant women as anethole has galactogenic properties. Breastfeeding women can safely use fennel in moderation to increase milk secretion.    

 Reduces respiratory ailments: The essential oil in fennel is rich in phytonutrients and they can reduce respiratory ailments. During pregnancy, issues like sinus can make the whole scenario worse. Fennel can effectively clear sinus. Even women suffering from asthma can get relief using fennel as it promotes bronchial relaxation.

Risk of Consuming Fennel during Pregnancy:

It is very normal to wonder whether certain foods are safe or not during pregnancy. Fennel is likely to be safe if taken moderately. However, pregnant women should avoid taking fennel from concentrated sources like extracts and supplements as it may bring some complications.

Fennel has estrogenic properties named anethole and in concentrated form fennel supplements or essential oil can be very high in anethole. Pregnant women should avoid essential oil with higher anethole content as it can be toxic for them. It can affect fetal development. It can even result in miscarriage in pregnant women.

Tasty Ways of Including in Your Diet:

Fennel seeds can be used in both sweet and savoury dishes for flavouring. In India, they are one of the five ingredients of a spice mixture called panch phoron which is used to tamper foods.

  •         Fennel seeds can be used in baking bread and biscuits.
  •         You can add them to the sausage mixture.
  •         Fennel seeds give a unique flavour in pickles.
  •         Using fennel seeds or stem in a fish soup can add some extra flavour and aroma.
  •         You can use fennel seeds in salad dressing.
  •         You can flavour meatballs with ground fennel seeds.

Fennel plants grow easily in temperate regions and they are now cultivated all over the world. They are widely used in European and Asian cuisine. However, when it comes to pregnant women, they should always avoid fennel extract or supplements as they can be toxic during pregnancy. 


Published by

MKB Team

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