Remarkable health benefits found in Fenugreek, especially long-lasting youth. Image Courtesy – MomJunction
Fenugreek is a native plant to Southern Europe and Asia. It has white flowers and hard, yellowish-brown and angular seeds. The scientific name of Fenugreek is Trigonella foenum-graecum. Its other names are ‘Methi’, ‘Greek hay’, ‘Greek Clover’, ‘Bird’s Foot’, ‘Fenugrec’, ‘Hu lu ba’, ‘Trigonella’ and ‘Bockshornklee’.
Fenugreek is an annual tree. It produces flower and fruit only once. Three leaves grow together. It has flowers and three petals. There are two types of flowers, female and male and colours are usually white and yellow. Brown-yellow seeds are almost rectangular in shape.
Fenugreek is a source of multivitamins and minerals. Some important vitamins are found in Fenugreek seeds like Thiamin, Riboflavin, Niacin, Folic Acid, Vitamin A, Vitamin B6, Vitamin C etc. It is also rich in minerals like Calcium, Potassium, Copper, Iron, Zinc, Manganese, Magnesium, Selenium etc. Vitamin K is also available in leaves of the plant.
Seeds of Fenugreek contain Trigonelline, Lysine, I-Tryptophan, Saponin and fibres. Seeds are used in many traditional ways of treatment.
Decreases the level of Cholesterol:
It is said that the seeds of Fenugreek have the capacity to reduce cholesterol from the human body. Scientific research showed that Saponin has a role in reducing cholesterol level in the human body. As we know that LDL cholesterol is the bad cholesterol that is very much harmful to the human body. The component Saponin present in Fenugreek seeds has an important role in decreasing LDL cholesterol. A study on rodents proved that Fenugreek can significantly decrease cholesterol concentration.
Protection from Cancer:
Scientific research revealed that this herb has estrogenic effects and may be effective in Hormone Replacement Therapy. This herb contains Saponin and a gelatinous component that bind toxins in the food. These toxins are then flushed out from the body thereby protecting the mucus membranes of the colon from cancer.
An unusual amino acid present in Fenugreek is capable to enhance insulin secretion under hyperglycemic condition and grow insulin sensitivity. Studies have shown that diabetic patients who eat Fenugreek regularly are less prone to diabetes and have a lower risk of stroke. Fenugreek is nearly the best diet for diabetic patients.
Helps in losing body weight:
This herb proves as a complementary for exercise and dieting regarding weight loss. This is a ‘thermogenic’ herb that subdues appetite and grows energy in a short period. In this way, it harmonizes the carbohydrate metabolism of the body and helps in losing weight.
Increase Testosterone secretion:
Fenugreek increases the level of testosterone in the human body and it has a positive effect on male libido to maintain a healthy sexual life. A research was conducted on 60 males of 25 to 52 years with Fenugreek extract combined with minerals. The research result showed that the male covered by the study have increased their sexual arousal and orgasm. By consuming cooked vegetables made of fresh green plants of Fenugreek in the season when it is available, health and vitality increases due to the development of testosterone in the body. When the level of testosterone increased in a human body it prolongs youthfulness by pushing away ageing.
Increases Breast Milk for mothers:
Fenugreek is such a herb that promotes milk production and flow in a mother’s body. Thus, it has traditionally been used for mothers while nursing and breastfeeding. In a traditional way, mothers are supplied with herbal tea consists of Fenugreek seeds to increase the production of breast milk and to stimulate milk flow.
Remove digestion problem:
This herbal seed is an effective remedy for heartburn or acid reflux disease. It creates a coating in the stomach and intestine and helps in bringing a soothing effect to gastrointestinal inflammation.
Side effects of Fenugreek:
During the pregnancy period, Fenugreek should be avoided because it has an effect of abnormality in physiological development. It may cause defects in child-birth.
In case of any bleeding, consumption of this herb should be stopped and consultation with a doctor is needed.
Those who are allergic to this herb should not consume it.
Reference: Med India