Fennel seeds are widely preferred and a common spice in the kitchen. The herb is highly famous for its delicious flavor and cooling sensation, but its medicinal values are also interesting.
The green and white plant with feathery leaves offers edible bulbs and seeds. These two parts have been a part of Ayurvedic medicines for ages.
The bulbs and seeds of fennel plants contain numerous nutrients, including antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, etc., that would benefit in preventing or curing certain health conditions.
Hence, this article will list all the benefits of fennel seeds for their best usage.
Benefits Of Fennel Seeds
May Help Reduce Bad Breath
You might have seen people chewing fennel seeds after their meals. Do you know why? Fennel seeds are considered one of the best things to chew to reduce bad breath.
The spoon of fennel seeds would be enough after an odorous meal to avoid foul breath.
These seeds contain antimicrobial properties and increase saliva secretion, which would help restrict the growth of certain microbes responsible for bad breath.
Additionally, it offers a sweetened flavor and fresh sensation alongside reducing foul breath.
Moreover, some people prefer consuming fennel seeds tea instead of chewing them raw to reduce bad breath.
Apart from oral hygiene, fennel seeds also benefit oral health as their antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties relieve sore gums.
May Improve Digestion
Fennel seeds could be highly beneficial in aiding digestion and reducing digestive issues.
The seeds offer carminative effects to the consumers that would benefit in soothing the digestive tract and preventing gas formation.
Moreover, these seeds have higher fiber content that improves digestion. A study has shown that it could also relieve symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome.
It may also help retain the digestion mechanism after chemotherapy or radiation treatments.
Soaking a few spoons of fennel seeds in water overnight and drinking it in the morning soothes the stomach and improves digestive issues like bloating, constipation, etc.
May Lower Body Weight
Fennel seeds could potentially lower body weight. Consuming roasted fennel with lukewarm water regularly on an empty stomach may help reduce body weight.
Generally, fennel seeds are highly rich in fiber that helps to keep you full for long.
Moreover, the high fiber content suppresses the appetite resulting in low food intake, as shown in the study.
Fennel seeds also offer diuretic properties and enhance metabolism, which increases calorie burning.
Hence, people who consume fennel seeds along with a routine diet and exercise may observe visible changes in their overall body weight.
Additionally, fennel seeds regulate the smooth digestion process, which is essential for better nutrition absorption.
It could also benefit in avoiding overeating, a common mistake during the weight loss process.
May Stimulate Breast Milk Production
Fennel seeds could be beneficial for lactating women. These seeds could benefit a woman by improving her digestion and increasing milk production.
This government paper shows that the galactogenic effects of the seeds could be due to some compounds like dianethole and photo-anethole.
Apart from milk production, fennel seeds may help increase the production of a hormone, prolactin, that signals milk production.
Hence, fennel seeds may help women properly feed the infant during their lactation period.
But, additional studies would be required to confirm the fennel seed’s role in women’s milk production.
Therefore, women must consult the doctor before taking any additional supplement or food to enhance milk production for the betterment of the infant.
Contains Multiple Useful Plant Compounds
Fennel seeds contain multiple plant compounds that complement the benefits offered to consumers.
The seeds contain volatile compounds like rosmarinic acid, quercetin, chlorogenic acid, apigenin, etc.
These essential compounds play a vital role in several metabolic activities occurring inside the body.
Rosmarinic acid, a polyphenol compound, offers anti-inflammatory properties that may prevent several chronic disorders like cancer, diabetes, etc.
Fennel seeds also contain several antioxidants that help protect the body from oxidative stress.
Moreover, some compounds also show antibacterial, antiviral, and antimicrobial properties that may prevent the growth of disease-causing microorganisms.
These seeds also contain a vital plant compound, limonene, essential for fighting against free radicals. Moreover, it may reduce the cellular damage caused due to chronic disorders.
May Help To Keep The Heart Healthy
Fennel seeds may protect and keep the heart healthy. These tiny seeds contain a high amount of fiber that may prevent heart-related diseases.
Fibers may potentially lower high cholesterol levels and maintain bad cholesterol in the blood.
Moreover, fibers prevent untimely snacking by offering a feeling of fullness, which is healthy for the heart.
Besides fibers, fennel seeds contain various nutrients like magnesium, calcium, and potassium, essential for the smooth regulation of heart functions.
For example, a potassium-rich diet could help lower blood pressure, a potential cause of heart disease.
Similarly, consuming optimum amounts of magnesium could prevent or reduce irregular heartbeat.
Moreover, it would relax the walls of blood vessels, resulting in lowered blood pressure.
Hence, you could readily supply your body with these essential nutrients by consuming fennel seeds.
May Reduce Body’s Water Retention
Water retention in the body could lead to the deposition of toxins and several other diseases.
Moreover, excessive water retention may cause swelling of the hands, legs, and other regions. Here, fennel seeds could do wonders by reducing water retention in the body.
Fennel seeds tea has diuretic properties, hence, consuming fennel seeds tea in the morning would help remove excess fluid from the body, as per this study.
Moreover, applying strong fennel tea to puffy eyes may reduce the puffiness caused due to water retention.
Fennel seeds also possess diaphoretic properties that would increase sweating.
Hence, consuming fennel seeds regularly may help detoxify the body by removing toxic fluids through sweat and urine.
Moreover, it may prevent developing urinary tract problems and several severe conditions like stones.
May Lower Respiratory Illnesses
Fennel seeds have been linked with lowering the symptoms of several respiratory disorders. Fennel seeds contain multiple phytonutrients that may help clear the sinuses.
Moreover, these seeds may help relax the bronchi resulting in reduced symptoms of asthma, bronchitis, etc.
Drinking one or two cups of fennel tea could help lower the symptoms of cough and cold.
Also, you may soak fennel seeds in warm water and gargle the strained water to get instant relief from congestion.
Fennel seeds possess mild expectorant properties that may help relieve multiple respiratory problems.
Hence, it is a potential medicine for common illnesses like cough, cold, flu, congestion, etc.
May Manage Menstrual Cycle
Several women worldwide face menstrual cycle-related problems like irregularity or delayed menstruation.
Some common causes of these problems could be stress, poor diet, medications, etc. Here, fennel seeds may help get the menstrual cycle on track and continue timely menstruation.
Fennel seeds offer emmenagogue properties to consumers that may promote and regulate the menstrual cycle.
Moreover, the fennel plant contains phytoestrogens which may help treat conditions like premenstrual syndrome, breast enlargement, menopause disorder, etc.
Fennel seeds additionally offer aphrodisiac properties that may enhance libido in both males and females.
Hence, you may consider consuming fennel seeds to make your menstrual cycle regular.
May Improve Skin Condition
Fennel seed consumption could be highly beneficial in improving an individual’s skin condition.
Generally, fennel seeds may prevent acne, rashes, and dryness on the skin. These seeds may help keep the skin hydrated and smooth throughout the day.
Fennel seeds contain several antioxidants that protect the skin from free radicals. Moreover, these compounds may keep the skin healthy for a longer period.
Alongside antioxidants, fennel seeds contain multiple minerals like potassium, selenium, and zinc, essential to keep the skin healthy.
These minerals play an important role in balancing the hormone level.
Additionally, it may also maintain the oxygen level in the blood required for the optimum supply of oxygen to the skin cells.
Generally, people prefer using fennel seeds as a mouth freshener after meals. But, the benefits of these seeds make them a superfood after a healthy meal.
You may go through the above-listed benefits of fennel seeds to get a brief idea of the hidden advantages of consuming these tiny seeds.
But, if you have any existing severe medical conditions, you must consult any specialist before consuming fennel seeds.
Working4Health prefers using primary and verified references. We have strict sourcing guidelines and our primary references include peer-reviewed research, academic, and medical institution studies.
- Raid Al Akeel, Ayesha Mateen, Rabbani Syed, et al. Screening, Purification and Characterization of Anionic Antimicrobial Proteins from Foeniculum Vulgare Molecules. 2017 Apr 8;22(4):602. doi: 10.3390/molecules22040602. Available from: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28397764/
- Sujata Tungare; Nowera Zafar; Arati G. Paranjpe. Halitosis Last Update: August 27, 2021. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK534859/
- Rajkumar Manohar, Akila Ganesh, N Abbyramy, et al. The effect of fennel seeds on pH of saliva – A clinical study Indian J Dent Res. 2020 Nov-Dec;31(6):921-923. doi: 10.4103/ijdr.IJDR_185_19. Available from: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33753665/
- Huihui Liu, Jinlu Li, Shuqin Lin, et al. Effects of dietary fennel (Foeniculum vulgare Mill.) seed powder supplementation on growth performance, nutrient digestibility, small intestinal morphology, and carcass traits of broilers PeerJ. 2021; 9: e10308.Published online 2021 Jan 28. doi: 10.7717/peerj.10308
- Piero Portincasa, Leonilde Bonfrate, Maria Lia Lia Scribano, et al. Curcumin and Fennel Essential Oil Improve Symptoms and Quality of Life in Patients with Irritable Bowel Syndrome J Gastrointestin Liver Dis. 2016 Jun;25(2):151-7. doi: 10.15403/jgld.2014.1121.252.ccm. Available from: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27308645/
- JiYoung Bae, JiEun Kim, Ryowon Choue, et al. Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) and Fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum) Tea Drinking Suppresses Subjective Short-term Appetite in Overweight Women Clin Nutr Res. 2015 Jul; 4(3): 168–174.
Published online 2015 Jul 31. doi: 10.7762/cnr.2015.4.3.168
- Somayyeh Sadrefozalayi and Farah Farokhi Effect of the aqueous extract of Foeniculum vulgare (fennel) on the kidney in experimental PCOS female rats Avicenna J Phytomed. 2014 Mar-Apr; 4(2): 110–117.
- Fennel Last Revision: March 21, 2022. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK501793/
- Shamkant B. Badgujar, Vainav V. Patel, and Atmaram H. Bandivdekar Foeniculum vulgare Mill: A Review of Its Botany, Phytochemistry, Pharmacology, Contemporary Application, and Toxicology Biomed Res Int. 2014; 2014: 842674.Published online 2014 Aug 3. doi: 10.1155/2014/842674
- Chunxu Luo, Lin Zou, Huijun Sun, et al. A Review of the Anti-Inflammatory Effects of Rosmarinic Acid on Inflammatory Diseases Front Pharmacol. 2020; 11: 153.Published online 2020 Feb 28. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2020.00153
- Lujain Bader Eddin, Niraj Kumar Jha, M. F. Nagoor Meeran, et al. Neuroprotective Potential of Limonene and Limonene Containing Natural Products Molecules. 2021 Aug; 26(15): 4535.Published online 2021 Jul 27. doi: 10.3390/molecules26154535
- Maliheh Afiat, Elham Amini, Masumeh Ghazanfarpour, et al. The Effect of Short-term Treatment with Fennel on Lipid Profile in Postmenopausal Women: A Randomized Controlled Trial J Menopausal Med. 2018 Apr; 24(1): 29–33.
Published online 2018 Apr 30. doi: 10.6118/jmm.2018.24.1.29
- Sigal Eilat-Adar, Tali Sinai, Chaim Yosefy, et al. Nutritional Recommendations for Cardiovascular Disease Prevention Nutrients. 2013 Sep; 5(9): 3646–3683.Published online 2013 Sep 17. doi: 10.3390/nu5093646
- Sichao Zhang, Xi Chen, Ichinkhorloo Devshilt, et al. Fennel main constituent, trans-anethole treatment against LPS-induced acute lung injury by regulation of Th17/Treg function Mol Med Rep. 2018 Aug; 18(2): 1369–1376.
Published online 2018 Jun 7. doi: 10.3892/mmr.2018.9149
- Shabnam Omidvar, Sedighe Esmailzadeh, Mahmood Baradaran, et al. Effect of fennel on pain intensity in dysmenorrhoea: A placebo-controlled trial Ayu. 2012 Apr-Jun; 33(2): 311–313.doi: 10.4103/0974-8520.105259
- M Albert-Puleo Fennel and anise as estrogenic agents J Ethnopharmacol. 1980 Dec;2(4):337-44. doi: 10.1016/s0378-8741(80)81015-4. Available from: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/6999244/
- Ozra Akha, Khadijeh Rabiei, Zahra Kashi, et al. The effect of fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) gel 3% in decreasing hair thickness in idiopathic mild to moderate hirsutism, A randomized placebo controlled clinical trial Caspian J Intern Med. 2014 Winter; 5(1): 26–29.
- About the Author
- Latest Posts
Alisha Matthew has been a practicing nutritionist since 2016. She holds a master’s degree in nutrition from the University of IOWA. She is a staunch believer in improving the human health index by educating people about nutrition and the importance of nutrition in leading a healthy and happy life. Her long-term goal is to keep educating people on general health and keep herself updated with the latest trends in the field of health.