Fenugreek powder obtained from the fenugreek seeds commonly known as Methi is a staple spice found in most Indian households. This multi-purpose herb though well known for adding a distinct flavour in various dishes and cuisines has innumerable health benefits. Right from maintaining cholesterol levels in blood, treating heartburn or acid reflux, promoting hair growth, preventing dandruff, fenugreek does it all.
Fenugreek, which goes by the botanical name Trigonella foenum-graecum is native to Western Asia and the Mediterranean’s. Be it the cuboidal shaped seeds, fresh leaves, or sprouts, this traditional herb has found its way in several Indian cuisines, pickles, vegetable curries, or as spice mixes used for tadka in sambar or dal. Owing to its sweet, maple-syrup like scent and flavour, methi seeds are also used in artificial maple syrup, ice creams, candies, beverages, shampoos, soaps, and cosmetics.
Ancient folklore has it that the mucilage content in fenugreek seeds, allowed Ancient Egyptians to use the powder for the purpose of embalming the mummies. The holistic science of ayurveda also documents the use of fenugreek powder to stimulate milk production in new moms, help to treat respiratory and intestinal problems, arthritis, bronchitis, asthma and is extremely effective in healing wounds.
Fenugreek powder is a powerhouse of numerous health-promoting nutrients like dietary fiber, protein, vitamin B1, B2, B3 and C, zinc, iron, copper and polyunsaturated fats. It also contains bioactive constituents like saponins, volatile oils, mucilage, and alkaloids like choline and trigonelline. Several types of research document that people consuming raw methi seeds or powder have low cholesterol and healthier hearts.
Benefits Of Fenugreek Powder
Promotes Milk Production In New Mothers:
Breast milk is extremely essential for newborn babies since it is enriched with essential nutrients required for the growth and wellbeing of the baby. But due to some health issues, some women cannot secrete enough breast milk to meet the daily nutrient intake of the newbie. Fenugreek powder shows strong galactagogue properties that stimulate the secretion of milk in new moms. Hence, under proper consultation, a cup of fenugreek infused tea effectively increases the production of breast milk in new mothers. Also Checkout: World Breastfeeding Week: Diet Plan For Better Lactation- Infographic
Good For Male Reproductive System:
Methi powder is indicated for improving men’s health. The powder, being a natural antioxidant improves the production of male hormones like testosterone and luteinizing hormone. It has powerful spermatogenic properties that are extremely beneficial for treating conditions like hypospermia (low volume of semen), oligospermia (i.e. low sperm count), asthenozoospermia (i.e. sperm motility) and enhances spermatogenesis (i.e. sperm production). It also treats conditions like erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation and improves sexual function and libido.
The excellent hypoglycaemic property of fenugreek powder plays a noteworthy role in alleviating the blood sugar levels of the body. The production of insulin from the β-pancreatic cells becomes active while taking methi powder and helps to reduce the breakdown of starch into glucose which in turn leads to low blood glucose levels.
Improves Skin Health:
Laden with vitamin C and antioxidants, it is used for treating oxidative free radical damage due to the sun rays, and hence treats the various signs of aging like wrinkles, fine line, spots, dark circles, etc. It also reduces acne, pimples and bestows a smooth and glowing skin. The natural oils present in fenugreek powder hydrates and moisturise the skin and make it supple and soft.
Relieves Hair Problems:
Methi has been a boon for promoting hair growth since ancient times. The anti-microbial nature of the plant treats various scalp and hair infections like folliculitis, itching and dandruff. It nourishes the hair follicles with essential nutrients, improves blood circulation and strengthens the hair strands from the roots. By normalising the secretion of the stress hormone, it also prevents hair fall and breakage due to stress and anxiety.
Apply a hair pack of methi powder by mixing with henna, curd and almond oil and keep it on for 45 minutes. Wash off, shampoo and condition your hair. Do this once a week for thwarting dandruff and hair fall and stimulating hair growth.
Fenugreek considered as the ‘spice of life’ has numerous health benefits. From the ancient ages, this potent spice is not only used for flavouring food but also for increasing milk production in breastfeeding mothers, boosting male stamina, lowering inflammation and blood cholesterol levels and augmenting skin and hair health.