Fenugreek is a multipurpose herb. From Western Asia to the Mediterranean, people have used this herb for 1000s of years to flavor food, boost health, and ward off maladies.
In recent times, fenugreek has gained international popularity as an herbal supplement with a wide range of benefits for your health. So, let’s decode fact from fiction, as we delve deeper into the evidence-backed ways this herb boosts your health.
Fast Facts About Fenugreek
- Fenugreek reduces the risk of diseases like cancer.
- The herb wards off lifestyle diseases like diabetes and obesity.
- It is known for its positive impact on blood pressure and insulin levels.
- It is a potent anti-inflammatory.
- It is one of the oldest medicinal plants.
- It is used for soaps, teas, condiments, and even spice blends.
- It is a potent antioxidant.
- It contains nutrients like biotin and vitamin A, B, inositol, and choline.
What Is Fenugreek? How Does It Work?
Fenugreek is a herb akin to clover native to Southern Europe, Western Asia, and the Mediterranean region. Seeds of fenugreek are used to make medicine and even in cooking. The leaves of this herb are also taken as a vegetable in India and other Asian countries. It works effectively to counter digestion issues like loss of appetite, upset stomach, constipation, gastritis, and much more.
Fenugreek is also used for warding off hormonal conditions like PCOS, thyroid problems, and painful menstruation. It serves to stave off lifestyle diseases like diabetes and obesity, too. It is also useful for conditions impacting heart health such as arteriosclerosis or hardening of the arteries.
Fenugreek is also used for beriberi, kidney ailments, boils, skin conditions, mouth ulcers, Parkinson’s disease, and even cancer. Milk flow production during pregnancy can also be boosted through the ingestion of this herb, which serves as a potent anti-inflammatory.
So if you’re facing pain or swelling, fenugreek is the herb to use. Its scientific name is Trigonella foenum-graecum, and it has oblong green or yellow leaves consumed fresh or dried. Fenugreek seeds have been used in Egyptian, Ethiopian, Eritrean, Persian and Turkish cuisine on account of their sweet properties.
Archaeologists even discovered fenugreek seeds dating back to 4000 BC in Iraq! Fenugreek seeds have several health benefits.
What makes this herb work are its seeds containing many essential nutrients. Trigonelline is one betaine molecule in this herb known to prevent(1) and manage diabetes.4-hydroxy Isoleucine and 2-oxoglutarate are other molecules with insulin stimulating impact. 3-Hydroxy-4,5-dimethyl-2(5H)-furanone and Yamogenin are other health-impacting compounds found in fenugreek.
10 Health Benefits Of Fenugreek
1. Improve Milk Production During Nursing
Breast milk is a crucial source of nutrition, yet some mothers may struggle to produce sufficient amounts. While prescription drugs are used for breast milk production, research indicates fenugreek could be an effective solution.
One study found drinking herbal fenugreek tea helped mothers to increase breast milk production. Another found the volume of pumped milk also rose when fenugreek tea or supplements(2) were used.
2. Boosting Testosterone
Fenugreek supplements boost testosterone levels. It has many beneficial effects, including increased libido and strength. One study found that taking 500 mg of fenugreek seeds per day were stronger and produced higher testosterone and reduced body fat(3).
3. Control Diabetes and Blood Sugar Levels
Fenugreek may help in metabolic disorders like diabetes. It impacts both type 1(4) and two diabetes, along with carb tolerance(5) in people. People with diabetes found reduced blood sugar levels and LDL cholesterol after taking fenugreek(6).
A 13%(7)reduction in blood sugar levels was noted in other patients who took the herb. These benefits stem from this herb’s role in regulating insulin function.
4. Appetite Control
5. Controlling Cholesterol
Fenugreek can also lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels, according to research evidence(11).
6. Heartburn and Acid Reflux
A two-week pilot study found those with frequent heartburn reduced their symptoms through fenugreek, which worked(12) as well as antacids.
7. Reduce Inflammation
The herb also lowers inflammation, as per research studies conducted on animals. It has potent anti-inflammatory properties(13). Some reviews and reports from traditional medicines indicate fenugreek can help in ulcerative colitis, skin issues, and other conditions.
8. Combat Digestion Issues
Digestive problems, including loss of appetite, constipation, and gastritis, can also be kept at bay using fenugreek herb.
9. Reduce Risk of Blood Pressure and Heart Conditions
Fenugreek helps to regulate cholesterol levels and boost blood pressure stabilization, that reduces heart conditions and improves heart health. This is primarily because fenugreek seeds contain 48% fiber, which is hard to digest and forms a gel in the intestine, making it tough to digest sugars.
10. Pain Relief
Fenugreek has also been deployed for pain relief in traditional medical systems. Researchers hold that compounds known as alkaloids help to block sensory receptors that perceive pain.
A 2014 study even found women taking capsules of fenugreek seed powdered form thrice a day for the first three days of the painful menstruation period for two months in a row experienced less pain and fewer symptoms(14).
Taking 1800 to 2700 mg of fenugreek seed powder thrice a day also reduced the need for painkillers for women facing dysmenorrhea or painful menstrual periods.
So, if you are facing a host of medical conditions or just a single annoying health problem, this multipurpose herb can be just the solution you need to keep the doctor away. Use this fantastic herb in any form. Science-backed research adequately proves you’re 100% right in doing so!