India is the largest exporter of fennel seeds, widely known as saunf. A common practice in most Indian households is to have few fennel seeds or saunf at the end of every meal. This practice you might think is to freshen the mouth, but think again. A concentrated source of minerals like Copper, Potassium, Calcium, Zinc, Manganese , Vitamin C, Iron, Selenium and Magnesium, the age old practice does much more than simply beat bad breath.
Here are health benefits of fennel seeds :
Tackles Microbial Infections
Fennel acts against many harmful pathogens and can, therefore, protect you from various infections. For instance, studies have found that it shows antibacterial activity against a range of bacteria such as Enterococci bacteria which can cause urinary tract infections, wound infections, and bacteremia; Staphylococcus aureus which can lead to staph infections; as well as Shigella bacteria, Escherichia coli, and Salmonella typhimurium which can cause food poisoning.
Keeps Your Skin Young
One study looked at the effect of applying a cream containing fennel seed extracts and found that it was extremely beneficial for the skin. The formulation reduced fine wrinkles and improved the elasticity of connective tissues. It also had a moisturizing effect. It is thought that the presence of flavonoids and polyphenols in fennel, which give it potent antioxidant properties, contribute to its anti-aging properties
Reduce Asthma Symptoms – Fennel seeds and their phytonutrients help clear sinuses. They make a great tea to aid with bronchitis, congestion and cough as they have expectorant properties.
Helps Purify Blood- The essential oils and fiber in these seeds are considered very useful to flush out toxins and sludge from our bodies, thus helping to cleanse the blood.
Keeps Cancer Away – The seeds also have very powerful free radical scavenging properties that help beat oxidative stress and protects the body from various cancers of the skin, stomach and breasts. Fennel seeds have a very potent chemo modulatory effect too.
Improves Eyesight– Fennel seeds contain Vitamin A, which is important for eyesight. In ancient India, extracts of these seeds were used to improve the symptoms of glaucoma.
Great for Acne – When fennel seeds are eaten on a regular basis, they provide the body with valuable minerals like zinc, calcium and selenium. These minerals are very helpful to balance hormones and in helping up the oxygen balance. When consumed, fennel has a cooling impact on the skin, hence giving a healthy glow.