Benefits of Fennel Seeds- Side Effects

Fennel seed is very beneficial for relieving various diseases, from congestion and stomach gas to asthma and diabetes. The seeds contain phytonutrients and powerful antioxidants. The strongest of them is anethole which makes them extremely nutritious and powerful. Fennel seeds are also called Semillas de Hinojos in Spanish, grains de fenouil in French, and budhur alfianal in Arabic. Read on to find out more about the health benefits of fennel seeds.

Fennel plant

The fennel plant is a perennial herbaceous plant and belongs to the tent family (English: Apiaceae), and its scientific name is Foeniculum vulgare, and it has 4 to 5 hollow stems, and its leaves resemble a feather, which is simple and linear, as it produces flowers A tent made of small yellow flowers, the fennel can reach a height of two meters, and has two types: wild fennel and sweet fennel, depending on its variety, and its place of origin, whether from southern Europe, or the Mediterranean region, and in fact this plant is one of the plants Short term, and its growth is often around.

What are Fennel seeds?

As for the aromatic fennel seeds, they are divided into two types according to their source, namely: sweet fennel seeds, and bitter fennel seeds, which are used in cooking as spices to add flavor, as they are sometimes taken between meals to smell the breath, and other uses, and in some varieties, they are consumed The bulb of fennel is often cooked, or added raw to salads, and it’s fresh, or dried leaves can also be used as a spice, as it is added to fish dishes, soups, and stews,

In addition, tea can be prepared by soaking its dried seeds in water Boiled after grinding. Fennel is also available in the form of nutritional supplements, dried herbs, and essential oils, as its oil contains the trans-anethole compound (English: Trans-anethole), which is the active compound that can help reduce bacterial and inflammatory activities in the body, but nevertheless, the benefits The potential for fennel oil and its supplements, as well as unconfirmed tea, compared to fresh or cooked fennel provides a great nutritional value.

Health Benefits of fennel seeds according to the degree of effectiveness -It’s content of nutrients

Dietary fiber:

Fennel seeds contain large amounts of fiber, which help to reduce constipation, and other digestive problems that may cause gases, as well as maintain the correct movement in the gastrointestinal tract, in addition, in some cases, they help relieve watery diarrhea, which It helps reduce the movement of the loose intestine, and raw fennel is a good source of fiber, and the recommended amount of fiber is equivalent to between 25 to 30 grams per day.[1]

Vitamin K:

Fresh fennel is a good source of vitamin K, but its low consumption is linked to an increased risk of bone fracture. [2]


One cup of raw fennel provides 7% of the recommended amount of potassium, which is equivalent to 4700 milligrams per day. This mineral is essential for controlling high blood pressure, and eating foods rich in it can help boost kidney function and bone health. , And muscle strength,  In addition, fennel seeds contain good amounts of this element; As a tablespoon, save 98.25 milligrams. [3]


As fennel contains a collection of plant nutrients, such as a compound organic Alonathol, which was found in laboratory studies that have anti-inflammatory properties, which may help reduce the risk of cancer, as it appeared that the aromatic oils Produced by anethole, can contribute to reducing the risk of liver poisoning in animals.

Health Benefits of fennel seeds according to the degree of effectiveness- Possibly Effective

Benefits And Side effects of Fennel seeds

Reducing colic in infants:

Some people use drinks containing fennel for infants, as it can help reduce symptoms of colic, or gases,  In a study published in the Journal of Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine in 2003, 125 children were conducted, ranging from Their ages are between two weeks to 12 weeks, and they suffer from colic. Fennel seed oil emulsion reduces the severity of infant colic, as it was found that this oil reduces intestinal spasms and increases the movement of the small intestine. However, there are no clinical studies confirming this efficacy.

There is insufficient evidence for its effectiveness

Reducing bloating:

Fibers in fennel seeds can help reduce gases, as well as reduce digestive problems that cause gases. Fennel also has anti-bacterial, inflammatory, and fungi properties, which may help get rid of bacteria that can cause gases in infected people. In cases of poisoning, or stomach disorders, these anti-inflammatory properties may help reduce flatulence, reduce stomach irritation, and improve digestion, which contributes to reducing gases caused by constipation, or stomach acid reflux (in English: Acid reflux).

Reducing constipation:

The fibers in fennel help reduce the incidence of constipation, and it also enhances the health of the digestive system.

Reducing stomach cramps:

Fennel seeds can help relax the smooth muscles of the digestive system, and thus reduce stomach cramps. Fennel tea can also be used to reduce stomach muscle cramps caused by digestive problems, such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome, and inflammation Ulcerative colitis, and Crohn’s disease.

Reducing indigestion:

Fennel seeds can help reduce indigestion that occurs after eating meals, as they possess antispasmodic properties, as tea can be drunk, or chewed its seeds to alleviate this condition.

Other Benefits of fennel seeds:

There is insufficient evidence about the effect of fennel in relieving some conditions, such as airway swelling, bronchitis, and upper respiratory tract infection, among others.

Benefits of fennel seeds for colon

Fennel seed consumption is associated with a reduction in the symptoms of colitis; Where a study was published in the journal Vutreshni Bolesti, it appeared that a group of chronic colitis patients had reduced symptoms after eating a mixture of herbs containing fennel, and the pain in their large intestine eased after 15 days of consuming fennel. [14] Another study published in the journal Annals of Gastroenterology in 2018 indicated that fennel oil extract can improve symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome and the quality of life of those with this syndrome, and that appeared after 211 patients consumed capsules made from a mixture of fennel oil Aromatic, and another kind of herbs for two months.

Health benefits of Fennel seeds  for women

Fennel benefits for breastfeeding women and postpartum

There are many conflicting scientific opinions about the degree of safety and effectiveness of using fennel during lactation to increase milk production; As some warn against its use due to the presence of only two cases, the consumption of herbal tea that contains fennel was related to the infant’s nervous system damage and therefore it is possible that it is not safe to consume during the lactation period, while some studies indicated its role in increasing milk production, such as a study published in a general magazine. She indicated this result when a breastfeeding woman consumes fennel tea, [4]

It is worth noting that mothers who are allergic to tent plants such as carrots or celery and others are advised to avoid consuming fennel to avoid an allergic reaction in them, or even in the infant, especially if he suffers From this allergy,

Although herbal consumption is common among breastfeeding women, information about the degree of safety and its effect is still limited, and therefore the nursing mother must consult a doctor before using various herbs, according to a study published in the journal BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine in 2013. [19]

Health Benefits of fennel seeds for the menstrual cycle

The use of fennel may reduce the signs and duration of dysmenorrhea, as a study published in the Journal of Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology in 2014 conducted a group of students who took one capsule containing 30 mg of fennel for every 4 hours before The menstrual period is three days, and a period that exceeds three months, and the results showed that fennel can contribute to alleviating the signs of dysmenorrhea, and the duration of their menstrual cycle,  but despite this, there is not enough evidence on the effectiveness of using dietary supplements for dysmenorrhea, Nor for her safety. [5]

Health Benefits of fennel seeds for  uterus

Consumption of essential oil of fennel seed is linked to reducing uterine contractions and relieving dysmenorrhea, according to a preliminary study conducted in mice and published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology in 2001,  and it should be noted that women with hormone-sensitive conditions, such as cancer Uterine, uterine endometriosis, and uterine fibroids (Uterine fibroids) can get worse due to exposure to estrogen, as fennel may play the role of estrogen, so it is advised not to use it by those with these Cases and can be read more about that in the Fennel Damages Clause.

The benefits of fennel seeds for weight loss

A study published in the Journal of Clinical Nutrition Research in 2015 indicated that fennel seeds can help reduce appetite in women who suffer from excess weight, as it was found that drinking 250 milliliters of fennel tea made with two grams of his seeds before lunch, reduced them. Feeling hungry, as they consumed fewer calories, but there are conflicting studies about the effectiveness of these seeds, so more studies are needed.[6]

Studies on the health benefits of fennel seeds

A comprehensive analysis that includes a set of studies, and was published in the Journal of Menopausal Medicine in 2018, indicated that fennel contributes to alleviating symptoms associated with menopause in women, such as vasomotor symptoms, vaginal itching, dehydration, and dyslexia (English: Dyspareunia), In addition to improving sexual activity and sleep quality.

A laboratory study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology in 2018 indicated that the Chloroform fraction of Foeniculum vulgare can inhibit the proliferation of breast cancer cells, in addition to stopping the cell cycle, and the occurrence of programmed cell death (in English: Apoptosis).

A laboratory study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food in 2011, which was conducted in mice carrying abdominal dropsy (English: Ehrlich ascites carcinoma), indicated that the methanol extract of fennel seeds could reduce the risk of some types of cancer, as it may possess characteristics It inhibits liver cancer cells, in addition to its strong activity in reducing free radicals, which may reduce oxidative stress and protect cells from the damage it causes.

A preliminary study published in the Journal of Food Chemistry in 2016, which evaluated several properties of 23 samples of fennel extracts, indicated that this extract possesses antibacterial activity for four foodborne pathogens, and some samples had an inhibitory activity of three types of bacteria, as they contribute Phenolic compounds present in fennel increase this activity.

An animal study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food in 2006 indicated that fennel extract can benefit their mental health, as it may reduce cognitive disorders, such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, caused by aging.

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The nutritional value of fennel seeds

The following table shows the nutrients in 100 grams of raw fennel, and its seeds:

The nutritional component

Raw fennel

Water (milliliter) – 90.21

Calories (kcal- 31

Protein (grams)- 1.24 g

Fat (grams) – 0.2

Carbohydrates (grams) – 7.3

Dietary fiber (grams) -3.1

Calcium (milligrams) – 49

Iron (milligram) – 0.73

Magnesium (milligrams) – 17

Phosphorus (milligram) – 50

Potassium (milligrams) – 414

Sodium (milligram)- 52

Zinc (milligrams) – 0.2

Manganese (milligram)- 0.191

Vitamin C (milligrams)- 12

Vitamin A (international units)- 963

Vitamin B1 (milligrams) – 0.01

Vitamin B2 (milligram) – 0.032

Vitamin B3 (milligrams)- 0.64

Vitamin B6 (milligrams) – 0.047

Choline (milligrams)

Drug interactions of fennel seeds

Fennel can interfere with some medications, so you should consult a doctor before taking it with it, and we mention some of the following:

Birth control pills:

Some types of birth control pills contain estrogen, and since fennel may have the same effect, taking it with these medications can reduce its effectiveness. Examples of birth control pills are Ethinyl estradiol, and levonorgestrel (English: Levonorgestrel), and Norethindrone.


It is a type of antibiotic, as fennel can reduce the amount of medicine absorbed by the body, and thus reduce its effectiveness, and avoid this fennel can be taken at least an hour after taking the medicine.


Eating large amounts of fennel may lead to the same effect that estrogen causes, so taking it with estrogen pills can reduce the effect of these pills, for example, Conjugated equine estrogens, and estradiol (English: Estradiol), and ethinylestradiol.

Liver-altering medications:

Fennel can reduce the liver’s rapid analysis of these medications; Which may lead to an increase in their effectiveness, so you should consult a doctor before eating fennel along with these drugs, examples of which are: calcium channel blockers, such as diltiazem, and chemical treatments, such as Etoposide, and antifungals, such as Ketoconazole (glucocorticoids), fentanyl (English: Cisapride), and others.

Medications that slow blood clotting:

Fennel may also slow blood clotting, so taking it with these medications may increase your risk of bleeding and bruising. Examples of these medications include aspirin, warfarin, and clopidogrel (English: Clopidogrel).


It is a drug used to help treat some types of cancer sensitive to estrogen, which is affected by its levels in the body, and since fennel affects estrogen levels as well, it may reduce the effectiveness of this medicine.

Common questions about fennel seeds

Is fennel seed useful for pregnant women?

As we mentioned earlier, there is not enough information about the degree of safety of fennel consumption during pregnancy or lactation, so it is advised to avoid eating it.

What are the health benefits of fennel seeds oil?

Fennel seeds essential oil contains more than 87 volatile antioxidant polyphenols that in turn reduce inflammation and improve health, and these compounds are acids called Rosmarinic acid, chlorogenic acid, quercetin, and Apigenin,  and as we mentioned earlier, Fennel oil may reduce colic in infants,  and may improve symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome.

Are there benefits for fennel for children and infants?

As we mentioned earlier, fennel may reduce colic for infants with the importance of using the appropriate doses for a period of no more than a week, and there is no other information about the benefits it can provide to children.

What are the health benefits of fennel to the stomach?

As we mentioned earlier, eating fennel may improve cases of bloating, stomach cramps, indigestion, and other digestive problems.

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