Latin name: Foeniculum vulgare
Common name(s): Fennel, Sweet Fennel
Fennel is an herb that has been used for centuries in herbal healing. It was recommended for the production on milk in nursing mothers by the ancient Greek physicians Dioscorides and Hypocrites. It was recommended for breaking up kidney stones by the British herbalist Culpepper.
Fennel is excellent for improving digestion, stopping nausea and it stops hiccups. Fennel can be used to treat gout. It is an antidote to poisonous mushrooms. Fennel is a biennial or perennial which is tall and clump forming. It has deep roots, hollow stems which are erect. It has pinnate glossy leaves which are divided into thread-like leaflets. In the summer it blooms tiny umbel dull yellow flowers which are then followed by ovoid grayish-brown seeds.
Fennel is native to South Europe but it has been naturalized in many countries which included North America, Australia and North Europe. Fennel is sweet aromatic herb that is a diuretic. The parts of the plant that are used in herbal healing are the leaves, oil, roots, seeds and stems. Fennel is rich in vitamin A which is excellent for improving your vision at night.
Fennel tea is an excellent gargle and breath freshener for gum disease and sore throat. Fennel tea works in riding the intestinal tract of mucus. Fennel works to expel worms and it can be used as a poultice to reduce inflammation and relieve swelling in the breasts of nursing mothers according to ‘The Rodale Herb Book’ by William H. Hylton.
Fennel is an antacid, anti-inflammatory, anti-spasmodic, aromatic, carminative, diuretic, emmenagogue, expectorant, galactagogue, parasiticide, stimulant, stomachic and tonic. Fennel seeds are good for treating colic, gas, indigestion and insufficient lactation in nursing mothers. Fennel roots are good for treating urinary disorders.
Fennel works in expelling phlegm from the lungs. Fennel leaves are eaten in salads and are used as garnish on dishes such as fish. Fennel seeds are used in bread and sausages for seasoning. Fennel oil is used as flavoring in liqueurs and tooth paste. It is also used in air fresheners and perfumes.
Fennel can be used to treat any of the following:
Abdominal cramps, asthma, bedwetting, bronchitis, colic, colon disorders, conjunctivitis, constipation, convulsions, coughs, digestion, emphysema, expels gas, eyewash, food poisoning, gall bladder, gout, hoarseness, increases lactation, indigestion, insect bites, intestinal problems, jaundice, kidney stones, liver cleanser, low cholesterol, lung problems, migraine headaches, morning sickness, obesity, sedative, sinus trouble, snake bites, spleen problems, stomach acid, suppresses appetite, uric acid, retention and weight reduction.