Fennel, scientifically called Foeniculum vulgare, is a herb that belongs to the carrot family.
It is one of the oldest spice plants. And plays a significant role in European food culture. Its feathery leaves, fleshy pale bulb, and aromatic seeds are frequently used in cooking.
Fennel is highly nutritious and safe for human consumption in daily life. It’s considered one of the world’s most important medicinal plants.
In this article, we’ll discuss the health benefits of drinking fennel tea. Let’s get started.
1. Improves sleep
Sleep is so important to our daily growth and development and shouldn’t be ignored.
Better sleep means a better you. Many health problems can be linked to inadequate sleep or a lack of quality sleep. And this is where fennel comes in.
Fennel has soporific effects. It contains magnesium, a major mineral in the body.
In one study, researchers gave 60 patients diagnosed with insomnia supplemental magnesium. Their findings showed that magnesium has a beneficial effect in treating insomnia.
Fennel is also known to be an effective phytoestrogen. Phytoestrogens increase sleep efficiency and reduce sleep-related problems.
Another study examined the impact of fennel on 60 menopausal women with sleep disturbances.
Researchers gave 20 of the participants a combination of fennel with another plant Officinalis.
The results were stunning. All 20 showed significant improvement in all aspects of sleep disturbance.
But there’s even more.
So if you are struggling to sleep at night, try making for yourself a hot cup of fennel tea.
2. May lower blood pressure
Worried about your blood pressure? Fennel tea might just be right for you
One study investigated fennel’s ability to lower blood pressure. The findings showed that Foeniculum Vulgare appeared to act as a diuretic and natriuretic.
And this in turn increased the excretion of water and sodium, an important mechanism in controlling blood pressure (Related: 10 Best Reasons to Eat a Low Sodium Diet).
But that’s not all.
Nitrates, potassium, calcium, and magnesium found in fennel also help lower blood pressure and protect the heart.
Fennel’s unique properties make it hypolipidemic and anti-atherogenic. So basically this is what it does. It prevents the build-up of fatty deposits in arteries.
This permits uninterrupted blood supply to the vital organs of the body including the heart.
3. Can help control diabetes
A growing body of research has looked into the anti-diabetic properties of fennel seeds.
One study investigated its effects on lowering blood sugar. The findings suggested fennel could be useful for controlling blood glucose.
But there is even more good news.
The researchers also found that fennel could be effective in reducing chronic complications associated with diabetes.
Here’s the thing:
Obesity plays a major role in diabetes development and progression. Weight control is one of the mainstays in diabetes management.
Generally, if appetite can be suppressed then to some extent weight can be controlled. The researchers evaluated the subjective appetite of the participants.
If you are trying to lose weight, this is one of the health benefits of fennel tea to take advantage of.
And interestingly the women who drank the fennel tea had more fullness and a lower level of prospective food consumption.
4. May help fight cancerous activity
Fennel plays a role in suppressing cancer activity. Anethole found in fennel seed has an inhibitory effect on cancer growth and progression.
A group of researchers looked into its antitumor activities. They discovered that human leukemia cell lines were significantly suppressed.
Other studies reveal significant anticancer activity against breast cancer cells.
The Johns Hopkins University listed flavonoids, carotenoids, and phenolic compounds as effective cancer-fighting phytochemicals. And guess what? All of these compounds are found in fennel.
5. Can help fight infections
Generally, we drink herbal teas to fight infections. Teas supply the body with enough fluids to flush out toxins produced by infectious microorganisms.
Fennel tea can be used to treat many bacterial, fungal, and viral infections.
Several studies in the past have been carried out to validate its effect against many microorganisms.
Fennel owes it’s antimicrobial activity to certain compounds such as linoleic acid. Let me explain.
In one study, researchers took extracts of fennel seed and investigated its antibacterial effects.
They found that compounds in fennel seed helped to inhibit the growth of Pneumonia-linked bacteria and many others which are common causes of respiratory, skin, and gastrointestinal infections.
Another research revealed how fennel was used traditionally to treat a wide variety of gastrointestinal infections such as gastritis and peptic ulcers.
6. Protects against irritable bowel syndrome
Take for example a study published in the Annals of Gastroenterology. The researchers on a total of 211 patients with irritable bowel syndrome.
Their predominant symptoms were diarrhea and constipation. Two-thirds had both. The researchers gave them extracts of turmeric and essential fennel oil.
Over two months they observed significant improvements both in symptoms and quality of life of these patients.
7. Can stimulate breastmilk production
Insufficient milk supply is a very important concern for lactating mothers. Researchers acknowledge the galactagogue properties of fennel..
Anethole, as well as fenchone and estragole found in fennel, are compounds that stimulate the production of milk.
In two studies, researchers assessed certain parameters such as milk volume, fat content, and infant weight gain.
Nursing mothers were placed on fennel galactagogue therapy. They reported that these parameters increased after the intake
8. May help reduces menstrual pain
Menstrual disturbances are by far the most common gynecological problems faced by women.
They are the reason for the rise in workplace absenteeism and the decreasing quality of life among women.
Most women experience a wide variety of physical and emotional disturbances such as:
- mood swings
- tender breasts
- severe cramping abdominal pain
About one in ten women are unable to perform their normal routine for one to three days of each menstrual cycle due to severe abdominal pains.
Research shows that women with menstrual cramps have high levels of oxytocin and prostaglandins
These hormones are known to cause cramping abdominal pain. In one study researchers confirmed the antispasmodic effect of fennel on isolated rat uterus.
They observed that fennel reduced the intensity of oxytocin and prostaglandins induced contractions significantly.
In a placebo-controlled trial, complete relief of menstrual pain was reported by 80% of the participants after the administration of fennel.
9. Promotes healthy eyes
Fennel seeds are rich in vitamin A, which is very important for eyesight.
Fennel has anti-inflammatory effects. And that is particularly helpful for watery and inflamed eyes. It could be used as a natural home remedy for pink eye or conjunctivitis.
Research proves that fennel can help treat other eye conditions like glaucoma and cataract.
The researchers who looked into its oculohypotensive properties noticed that it was effective in lowering intraocular pressure.
Do you want healthier eyes? Just place a teaspoon of fennel seeds into a teacup with hot water.
10. Can improve fresh breath
You can be assured that fennel won’t leave you with bad breath. This is one of the many little-known health benefits of fennel tea, and I’ll explain.
Fennel seeds protect against dental caries. Its antibacterial effects can destroy oral germs.
Also, saliva is one of the most important factors in maintaining oral health. Thanks to fennel we won’t be bothered.
Fennel seeds increase saliva secretion. And you can use fennel to lubricate and moisten the mouth.
The health benefits we can get from drinking fennel tea are simply awesome. Maybe its time you considered fennel tea.
Avicenna was right: “There are no worthless herbs – only the lack of knowledge.”
Fennel seeds and fennel tea has proven that medicinal herbs have fewer side effects than synthetic drugs.