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Fenugreek (Hindi: Methi) is an annual plant in the family Fabaceae. The seeds of this plant are used for medicinal purposes.

Benefits of taking Fenugreek

  • Fenugreek is used as a remedy for digestive problems. These include loss of appetite, stomach ache, constipation, gastritis inflammation
  • Fenugreek is used to treat muscle pains, swelling of lymph nodes, wounds, ulcers, boils, etc
  • It is used for heart related problems, triglycerides and balancing cholesterol in the body
  • Fenugreek is considered to be helpful for people suffering from chronic cough, diabetes (both type I and II), baldness, bronchitis, beriberi (a vitamin deficiency)
  • Research has shown that Fenugreek seeds help to increase the breast milk flow in women. Although, there is insufficient evidence to support this
  • Some men take Fenugreek for problems like hernia and erectile dysfunction
  • Further, Fenugreek seeds are rich in vitamins, minerals and anti- oxidants. These protect the body cells from any damage
  • It is sometimes added to medicines to mask the odor and taste of medicines

Natural sources of Fenugreek
Fenugreek is a plant and its seeds (in powdered and capsule form) are used for various medicinal purposes.

When should you take Fenugreek?
Fenugreek is taken for a variety of problems ranging from digestive problems to heart related problems to diabetes.

When should you avoid Fenugreek?
If you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy, then you should not take Fenugreek as it has properties which can induce early labor. However, if you are suffering from diabetes, or any blood clotting disorders, then also you should speak to your healthcare professional before taking Fenugreek supplement. Fenugreek should not be used by children as some studies have shown that the use of Fenugreek has caused unconsciousness and might lead to an unusual body odor among children.

Quantity to be taken
A spoon full of powdered Fenugreek seeds a day is good. If you are taking Fenugreek for increasing breast milk production, very low doses won’t be effective. Taking a 300 mg Fenugreek in capsule form thrice a day is recommended. Consuming Fenugreek in very high quantities is not advisable. It can lead to various problems like nausea, wheezing and other allergic reactions.

Expert tips/ Precautions

  • Although, Fenugreek is said to increase breast milk production, there are doubts about its safety. Therefore, it is best to avoid its use during breast feeding.
  • If you take Fenugreek just before the delivery, it might cause the baby to have an unusual odor, but does not cause long term effects. So, if you are pregnant, or having a baby, Fenugreek must be taken only after consulting a doctor as it might lead to early contractions.