Fennel is a plant that has it all; it’s actually a vegetable, spice, and herb! The ground bulb is the vegetable, the sprouts are the herbs, and the flower that produces the seeds are the spice. The seeds are a big hit with many people because they go well with so many dishes. Many people are not aware of the amazing health benefits that fennel seeds offers. Did you know that fennel seeds have been shown to help with menstrual cramps? It’s also been shown to have a healing effect for colitis, glaucoma, heart disease, and high blood pressure. In an Indian study, researchers discovered that fennel seeds had a strong impact on boosting brain activity, making the seeds good for those with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Fennel seed is very easy to incorporate into your diet because it compliments dishes with mushrooms, salmon, tomatoes, curry and chicken. The flavors in the seeds pair nicely with allspice, ginger, garlic, and coriander.
FAST FACT: In folk medicine, fennel was used to soothe digestive disorders including bloating and gas.