The seeds from the fennel plant have been used for centuries for their medicinal properties. Recently, I’ve been making fennel tea at home by boiling the seeds with water. Not only is fennel tea delicious, but it can cause some great noticeable health improvements as well.
I wanted to share with everyone a few of the proven benefits of fennel tea to give you an idea of why you should consider adding it into your daily routine.
#1 Fennel Tea Promotes Heart Health
Fennel tea is a great beverage to help support your entire cardiovascular system. Your liver assists with efficiently breaking down and regulating cholesterol within your body. Fennel seeds support the liver in carrying out this function and makes a fantastic detox tea ingredient. http://www.liversupport.com/6-tea-ingredients-to-help-detox-your-liver-and-aid-digestion/
Fennel is also a great source of fiber. A healthy balanced diet that contains an adequate dietary fiber intake has been linked with lower rates of cardiovascular disease. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16407729 Soluble fiber is capable of binding with LDL cholesterol particles (the ‘bad’ kind) and eliminating them from the body before they can be absorbed.
Fiber can also lower your risk of stroke and developing type 2 diabetes. The fiber in fennel, in addition to its potassium content, can also assist with lowering blood pressure and relieving hypertension.https://www.webmd.com/diet/features/fiber-heart#2
You should be including plenty of whole grains, fruits, and vegetables in your daily diet to ensure you are getting enough fiber. By adding fennel tea into the mix, you can further boost your fiber intake with a delicious hot cup of tea.
#2 Fennel Helps Improve Digestion
The fennel plant is widely known for its ability to help improve the digestive system. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22010973
It has a proven ability to improve the overall health of your gastrointestinal tract. Not only does the fiber content in fennel tea help to keep your heart healthy, but it also keeps your large intestine and colon healthy.
Insoluble fiber also helps relieve constipation or irregular bowel movements, as it promotes the movement of material through your digestive system and increases the bulk of your stool. https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/fiber/art-20043983
Fennel tea is also capable of improving digestion by disrupting some of the harmful bacteria responsible for causing flatulence. https://www.pacificcollege.edu/news/blog/2014/07/24/chai-tea-digestion
Along with peppermint oil, there is evidence that fennel tea can also relieve symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). It can prevent and treat symptoms of bloating and gas by helping to relax the gut. http://www.healthcenter.vt.edu/content/dam/healthcenter_vt_edu/assets/docs/MCInfoSheet-IBS.pdf
#3 Fennel Tea Boosts the Immune System
In addition to being an excellent source of fiber, fennel also contains several other essential vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, folate, calcium, potassium, magnesium, iron, selenium, niacin, copper, and manganese.
We all know that the immune system is greatly influenced by the nutrients that we provide our bodies. Whenever I start to feel even a little under the weather, vitamin C is one of the first things I turn to.
Vitamin C directly improves your immune system. Several cells involved in the immune response, such as phagocytes and t-cells require it to carry out their tasks. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19263912 The selenium found in fennel tea also helps to stimulate the production of t-cells.
When you make fennel tea, the oil from the seeds is released directly into the beverage. This oil has been shown to have potent antioxidant and antimicrobial properties. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11199122 Antioxidants help prevent cellular damage caused by harmful free radicals in your body, helping to protect against diseases like cancer.
#4 Fennel Tea Helps Prevent Cancer
As I mentioned in the point above, fennel tea contains an abundance of antioxidants that have been shown to be protective against cancer. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15138375
It isn’t just the antioxidant content that helps protect against cancer though. Fennel seeds have additional bioactive compounds, such as quercetin, that have anticancer properties. In particular, studies have examined the ability of fennel to protect against prostate cancer. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14666653
Another important thing that you should keep in mind is the role that inflammation plays in the development of many types of chronic disease, including cancer. Fortunately, fennel also contains a phytonutrient known as anethole.
This compound has demonstrated some potent anti-inflammatory properties, helping round out fennel tea as a fantastic beverage to help protect yourself against cancer. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4232798/
#5 Fennel Tea Can Help Manage Diabetes Symptoms
There are many great foods that can help alleviate complications that arise from diabetes. Some of most prominent foods include spinach, lemon, cumin, black pepper, and fennel. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19114390
This is partly due to the fact that fennel is quite low on the glycemic index (GI). This makes it a beneficial ingredient to include in a diabetic diet as it doesn’t cause sudden drastic blood sugar spikes.
In addition to being a low GI food, the potassium contained in fennel seeds is also beneficial for increasing insulin sensitivity. The selenium content also helps lower blood sugar levels. https://goo.gl/8sot1g This makes fennel tea even more appealing when it comes to managing type 2 diabetes symptoms.
#6 Fennel Tea Can Help Relieve Arthritis Symptoms
Inflammatory arthritis commonly caused pain, swelling, and tenderness in the joints. Other symptoms associated with high levels of inflammation in the body can include skin rashes, dry mouth, hair loss, and eye inflammation. http://www.arthritis.org/about-arthritis/types/inflammatory-arthritis/
The anti-inflammatory properties found in anethole are also effective when it comes to relieving the pain caused by these unpleasant arthritis symptoms. In addition, an antioxidant known as superoxide dismutase helps to further reduce levels of inflammation within the body. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17122956
Fennel has been used for decades among several different cultures all over the world as an effective treatment for arthritis.
#7 Fennel Tea Promotes Eye Health
Fennel tea also has a few interesting uses when it comes to your overall eye health. Believe it or not, the tea can be used directly as an eye drop or as a compress.
Extract from fennel seeds has been shown to have therapeutic potential in treating glaucoma. http://www.bismarcknd.gov/DocumentCenter/Home/View/493
The vitamin C content of fennel also plays a role in protecting your eyes. Studies have demonstrated that decreased levels of vitamin C in the eyes can lead to an increased risk of developing cataracts. http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/vitamins/vitamin-C
The antioxidant content of the vitamin C in fennel also helps to further protect your vision. This is due to your eyes having an elevated metabolic rate, causing them to require an increased need for antioxidative protection.
Fennel is also a useful remedy for treating inflammation that can occur in the eyes. https://goo.gl/es675M
#8 Fennel Tea Helps Treat Many Respiratory Conditions
There’s few things in life that make me more miserable than when I come down with a respiratory infection like bronchitis. The feeling of not being able to breathe properly along with chest congestion is awful.
Thankfully, fennel tea can be quite effective when it comes to helping with respiratory ailments. Just one cup of fennel tea can help soothe your sore throat, calm a dry cough, and provide antibacterial support to help your immune system fight off infection. http://www.fenneltea.org/respiratory-support/
Along with eating a healthy diet, avoiding exposure to tobacco smoke and other external irritants, drinking fennel tea is one of the best all natural ways to give your respiratory system a boost.
#9 Fennel Tea Can Assist Weight Loss Efforts
Just as the fiber content of fennel tea can improve your digestion, so too can it benefit your overall efforts to shed some unwanted pounds.
The improvements to your digestive tract enable your body to better assimilate nutrients, leaving you feel more satiated and helping to ward off hunger pangs. By helping to keep your appetite under control, fennel tea can directly impact your weight loss efforts.
Fennel tea also reduces serum glucose levels in the bloodstream and promotes a balanced weight. This is a common effect of hot temperament herbs, of which fennel is a part of. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3977068/
#10 Fennel Tea Helps Balance Hormones In Both Men and Women
Fennel tea contains traces of phytoestrogens. According to one study conducted in Italy, phytoestrogens serve to promote hormonal balance. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4153070/
The importance of maintaining hormonal balance cannot be overstated — symptoms of hormone imbalance can cause many unpleasant symptoms in both men and women.
Specifically for women, a hormonal imbalance can raise the risk of breast cancer and contribute to insulin resistance. There are many health conditions that have been linked with insulin resistance, such as obesity type 2 diabetes. http://womeninbalance.org/seventh-woman/causes/
One of the most important hormones for balancing your thyroid and glandular system is progesterone. Fennel tea can help support these glands due to the fact that it contains progestognenic compounds that assist with keeping your hormone levels in check. https://goo.gl/QvAHyd
Fennel tea has also demonstrated positive benefits when it comes to male sexual health. It’s known to boost the libido, prolong orgasms, and relieve issues related to the bladder and prostate. https://goo.gl/W8Y2wh
A Few Other Great Fennel Tea Benefits
The list above highlights 10 of the very best health benefits that fennel tea can provide. A few other beneficial reasons to drink fennel tea include:
- Treating heartburn
- Eliminating internal parasites
- Improving gum health
- Relieving morning sickness
- Helps cope with menstrual problems
- Reduces colic symptoms in babies
- Treatment for acne
All of these reasons combine to demonstrate just how amazing this simple seed and the oil it contains can prove to be for your overall health.
How to Make Delicious Fennel Tea
Making a good cup of fennel tea is incredibly straightforward. All that is required is to simply boil fennel seeds with water. The volatile oils found within the seeds are released and mix with the water to produce a tea that has a flavor quite similar to anise.
My personal favorite fennel tea recipe is as follows:
- Use 2 teaspoons of crushed fennel seeds (alternatively, you can use fennel leaves or root to make the tea as well)
- Add the crushed seeds to 2 cups of water and bring to a low boil
- Brew the tea for no more than two or three minutes, as excessive heat can destroy the volatile oils in the fennel seeds
- Strain the tea into a teapot or cup and sweeten to taste
- Consume the tea as soon as it cools enough — the longer you wait, more of the volatile compounds that make the tea so beneficial escape into the air
If you’d rather see a visual reference on how to properly brew fennel tea, you can check out a great video tutorial below;
Fennel Tea & Possible Side Effects
While fennel tea is capable of providing all of the great health benefits that I discussed above, it should be noted that it’s also possible to experience some side effects with it. Although they are quite rare, possible side effects can include:
- Allergic reactions
- Increased sensitivity to sun exposure
- Possible drug interactions – consult with your doctor if you are currently taking any prescribed medications before trying fennel tea
Additionally, pregnant or nursing women should not consume fennel tea without first consulting with their healthcare practitioner.
So what do you guys think of the list? I hope it’s convinced you to give fennel tea a try, especially if you suffer from any of the medical conditions that it can help alleviate like diabetes, high blood pressure, or digestive issues.
If you’re already a regular fennel tea drinker, have you experienced any of the beneficial effects that I described? Have you noticed any other health improvements that aren’t mentioned? Sound off in the comments below and let me know.
P.S. – Feel free to share this article with your friends and family if you think they could learn a thing or two. Who knows — maybe it will encourage them to give fennel tea a try!
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