Mon, 22 Feb 2010 06:11:01 GMT

Top Seed: All about fenugreek (methi) seeds

The bitter fenugreek (methi) seeds lend a distinct taste to mango pickles and preparations like kadhi and sambhar. Fenugreek leaves and seeds are also used extensively to prepare extracts for medicinal uses. Their medicinal properties have been described in Greek, Latin and Ayurvedic literature.

Top Seed: All about fenugreek seeds

Other health-promoting properties of fenugreek seeds (soaked in water) include smoothening the throat, protecting against abdominal discomfort and aiding in digestion. They also have diuretic and astringent properties.
Fenugreek seeds are known to help in menstrual cramps and regulate menopausal symptoms, bronchitis, arthritis and promote breast milk production in nursing mothers. A recent study reports that lactating women showed a 20 per cent increase in milk volume after two weeks of being given fenugreek supplementation.

Health benefits of germinated fenugreek seeds are considered to be more beneficial than dried seeds due to the high presence of plant chemicals like flavonoids.
Fenugreek seeds should not be consumed raw, they are better taken soaked or powdered. For diabetics, the dose depends on the severity of the condition. The prescribed dose varies between 25 to 50 grams i.e two to three tablespoons. You can divide 25 grams of the seeds in two doses of 12.5 grams each (about one tablespoon) that can be had with lunch and dinner. They can be added to chapattis, rice, dal, vegetable, curd, pickle, chutneys, or as sprouts in salad.

This bitter but beneficial seed usually has no side-effects, however, some people may develop diarrhoea or flatulence initially. If the symptoms persist, reduce quantity or build up slowly. Besides, they should not be taken by children before they reach puberty as they are believed to contain steroid-like compounds.

Source: Indian Express

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