Fenugreek is one of the oldest medicinal plants known to man, yet surprisingly has not gained as much popularity within the United States as it has in other parts of the world. More commonly known around the world as Methi, this annual plant is native to the Middle East as well as Southern Europe and Asia. It is a member of the bean family. Fenugreek has a variety of herbal, medicinal, as well as culinary uses. Different parts of the plant may be used for different purposes, although most benefits of Fenugreek can be found in the ground seeds which may be used as a spice in many cultures.
Fenugreek is rich in vitamins, minerals, fiber, and polysaccharides, and is known to provide relief from many ailments, including but not limited to:
- Sore Throat
- Mouth Sores
- Stomach Disorders
- Respiratory Disorders
- Other Inflammation
Other benefits of Fenugreek seeds include boosting of the immune system, promoting a healthy digestive system and reduced risk of colon cancer. Its high levels of polysaccharides help lower levels of bad cholesterol by reducing the absorption of bile salts into the colon.
There are no major side effects of Fenugreek, although over-use can lead to mild gastrointestinal discomfort. Pregnant women are advised not to use Fenugreek.