Methi Seeds Have Many Health Benefits, Try These 5 Home Remedies
Have you ever wondered what gives Indian pickles that smacking taste in your mouth? Well, in most cases that palate-tickling flavour comes from fenugreek seeds (methi)! These seeds are also responsible for the nutty aroma in many Indian curries.
Fenugreek is mainly found in Mediterranean countries as well as in the Middle East and South East Asia. India is one of the biggest fenugreek producers in the world, with 80 percent production being from the state of Rajasthan.
Fenugreek leaves are used either dry or fresh. Fenugreek seeds are used as they are, and are also sprouted and used as micro greens. In cuisine, fenugreek seeds act as a stabilizer, flavouring agent as well as thickener.
5 Home Remedies Using Methi or Fenugreek Seeds
Here are some quick home remedies with methi seeds:
1. Lactation Tea
This tea should have almost immediate effects on increasing milk supply, usually within 24 hours. Continue taking the tea till a proper supply system has been established.
2. Fenugreek Poultice
The paste helps to treat any pain or swelling in the area, and is more effective than OTC drugs or medications.
3. Weight Loss Tonic
This water helps flush out toxins and reduces water retention and bloating. It also reduces appetite and overeating throughout the day.
4. Anti-Ageing Face Pack
This pack tackles several problems at once – they reduce oiliness, remove acne scars and blackheads and also bring out a natural glow.
5. Fenugreek Hair Pack
This hair pack reduces hair fall by strengthening hair and also gives it a natural shine unmatched by any conditioner.
Health Benefits of Fenugreek Seeds
Besides its uses in cooking, fenugreek seeds have also been used in alternative medicine like Chinese medicine and Ayurveda. Ayurveda considers fenugreek an excellent food for people with a kapha dosha.
Here are some more health benefits of fenugreek seeds.
1. Increases Lactation
Breast milk is the only recommended food for babies in the first six months, making low breast milk supply a serious issue. Fenugreek seeds are well known for boosting milk production in lactating mothers, which in turn helps babies gain weight. This is due to the seeds’ galactogogue properties, which stimulate the milk ducts to increase supply.
2. Reduces Inflammation
Fenugreek seeds possess certain compounds including flavonoids that offer several antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. Fenugreek seeds are used either directly or in poultice form to heal joint pain, swelling and wounds.
3. Strengthens Hair
Fenugreek seeds are an important ingredient in traditional hair strengthening remedies. The seeds contain proteins and nutrients that strengthen roots. The potassium in the seeds also help prevent premature greying while the nicotinic acid and lecithin stimulate follicles for growth.
4. Improves Skin Health
Thanks to their anti-inflammatory properties, fenugreek seeds are used to heal skin issues like acne, hyper-pigmentation and excessive oiliness. The niacin, calcium and Vitamin A in the skin help reduce oil production. The natural fiber in the seeds also make them an excellent exfoliant.
5. Aids Digestion
Fenugreek seeds contain water soluble fiber which relieves constipation and regularizes bowel movements. They also help against digestive issues like heart burn, with its effects being as good as those of an antacid. In fact, fenugreek seeds are often used in diet plans to treat ulcerative colitis.
6. Reduces Period Pain
Dysmenorrhea or painful menstrual cramps can be severely limiting, and fenugreek seeds work as effective painkillers for the same. They contain compounds that imitate oestrogen, like diosgenin and isoflavones, which provide almost immediate relief from pain.
Tips to Buy and Store Fenugreek Seeds
It’s best to buy whole fenugreek seeds and grind them at home whenever required. Since the aroma of the seeds decreases quickly, it’s best to grind small quantities at a time. Choose seeds with a golden yellow color with uniform size and strong aroma. Organic seeds tend to have better flavour than others.
When stored in an airtight container in a cool, dark place, the seeds will last for up to one year, although the powder will only stay fresh for a few weeks. The best way to dry roast fenugreek is to roast on a heated pan over medium heat for 2-3 minutes, tossing the seeds till they turn brown.
Fenugreek seeds may trigger uterine contractions which is why they are not recommended for pregnant women or women having any kind of medical issue with hormones.
(Pratibha spent her childhood in idyllic places only fauji kids would have heard of. When she's not rooting for eco-living or whipping up some DIY recipes to share with her readers, Pratibha is creating magic with social media. You can view her blog atwww.pratsmusings.com or reach to her on Twitter at @myepica.)