15 Surprising Benefits of Fennel Essential Oil

by Meenakshi Nagdeve last updated -

The health benefits of Fennel essential oil can be attributed to its properties as an antiseptic, antispasmodic, aperitif, carminative, depurative, diuretic, emmenagogue, expectorant, galactagogue, laxative, stimulant, stomachic, splenic, tonic, and a vermifuge substance.

The essential oil of fennel may be obtained through the steam distillation of crushed fennel seeds, an herb which bears the scientific name of Foeniculum vulgare. Fennel seeds may have been in use in culinary applications and as a mouth freshener since ancient times. They might also be widely used for medicinal purposes. These medicinal properties may come from the various components of the essential oil of fennel, including alpha-pinene, anisic aldehyde, cineole, fenchone, limonene, myrcene, methyl chavicol, and trans-anethole.

Fennel Essential Oil Health Benefits

Given below is a list of medicinal properties of fennel essential oil.

May Heal Wounds

The essential oil of fennel may have certain compounds which contribute to its antiseptic properties. By virtue of this property, fennel oil may protect wounds from becoming septic. It might also be found to be effective in preventing incisions from becoming septic, particularly after surgeries, caesarian deliveries, and other more serious wounds.

May Relieve Spasms

Spasms can be fatal if not treated properly. Spasms are unwanted and abnormal contractions in respiratory tracts, intestines, muscles, or nerves, resulting in continuous coughing, hiccups, acute pain and pulling sensation in the intestines, cramps, muscle pulls, convulsions, or epileptic attacks. If not treated in time, a patient may have acute pain in the intestines or may run out of breath in cases of coughs and hiccups and could even die. Fennel essential oil may have a relaxing effect on nerves, muscles, intestines, and the respiratory system and it might pacify spasmodic attacks, giving quick relief for the previously mentioned situations.

May Smoothen Bowel Movements

Aperitif may be a similar property to purgative, but a little milder. An aperitif may act more on the intestinal peristaltic motion, rather than by adding to the bulk of bowel. Fennel oil might help clear the bowels and provide relief from constipation.

May Act As A Carminative

As a carminative, fennel oil may make gases escape from intestines and can give a person immense relief from problems such as indigestion, restlessness, pain in the abdomen, stomach, and chest, as well as lessen hypertension. It may also have another benefit of not letting additional gases form. It is very good for people with chronic gas trouble.

A bottle of fennel essential oil, fennel seeds, and fresh fennel bulbs on a wooden table

Fennel essential oil is known to be a potent and powerful aid for digestive health. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

May Kill Worms

Fennel oil might be an effective worm destroyer. It may kill the worms and their spores in the intestines and the excretory tracts. This may prove to be a great oil for children, who frequently suffer from parasitic worms, and can prevent malnourishment or stunted growth.

May Stimulate Urination

Fennel oil might increase the frequency of urination and the quantity of urine, and may help not only remove excess water, sodium, uric acid, bile salts, and other toxic elements from the body but also lowering blood pressure, cleansing the kidneys and reducing fat. There is just one thing to remember; if you are not suffering from swelling or accumulation of water in the body, then you should drink more water when taking fennel oil since very frequent urination can cause dehydration.

May Be A Good Emmenagogue

Women who have problems with irregular, obstructed or painful menstruation may benefit from the emmenagogue property of fennel oil. Not only can it help clear obstructed menses and make them regular, it also might give relief from the other symptoms associated with periods such as headaches, pain in the abdominal area, dizziness, and mood swings. It may also help prevent untimely or premature menopause.

May Promote Lactation

This oil may play an important role for lactating mothers. It might increase the amount of milk in them by boosting production of a hormone called estrogen. This benefits the baby as well as the mother. This milk may also inherit some of the carminative and digestive properties of fennel oil and may protect the baby from flatulence, indigestion, and gas, which are very common in infants.

May Act As A Laxative

Fennel oil might be a good laxative and may benefit in both chronic and acute constipation. However, unlike synthetic laxatives, it has no side effects and can be used regularly.

May Act As A Stimulant

Fennel oil may act as an emmenagogue, galactagogue, and diuretic due to a single property, which is its stimulating quality. Being a stimulant, it may promote all the activities going on inside the body. It might stimulate the brain and neural activity, nervous system, secretions from endocrine and exocrine glands (including the secretion of milk, sebum, sweat, tears, urine, and discharges during menses), digestive system, and excretory system. This stimulating effect may also help overcome fatigue, and dizziness.

May Keep Stomach Healthy

Being a stomachic may simply mean being a protector of the stomach. Fennel oil might help keep the stomach healthy and functioning properly and may maintain the normal function of all the secretions of digestive acids and bile. Furthermore, it may also protect the stomach from infections and ulcers, thus ensuring the all-around health and wellness of the stomach.

May Help Maintain A Healthy Spleen

Just as stomachic means something is good for the stomach, splenic means something that is good for the spleen. The spleen plays a vital role in our body as it is involved in the production of lymphocytes and red blood cells. A healthy spleen results in a good level of red blood cells and a more healthy and active life. Fennel oil may help maintain the spleen and keep it toned. It might also protect it from various infections.

May Have A Tonic Effect

This means an agent which tones and boosts health. Fennel oil may work as a tonic by toning all the systems that function in the body, such as the respiratory, digestive, nervous and excretory systems, while also facilitating the absorption of nutrients in the body, thereby increasing strength and boosting immunity.

May Help Purify the Blood

Fennel oil may do the work of a detoxifier and purify the blood, and is therefore considered a depurative. Actually, it might help the blood empty itself of blood urea, uric acid and certain unwanted hormones, which are the primary toxins found in our bloodstream. Apart from this, it may also balance sodium level in the blood and help in the removal of other toxic substances which get into the blood from external sources.

May Fight Chronic Cough

Fennel oil may have proven to be effective in providing relief from the depositions of mucus and phlegm that lead to congestion of the nasal tract, larynx, pharynx, bronchi, and lungs due to cold and viral infection. It might particularly be effective against frequent or chronic coughs.

Other Benefits

Fennel oil may reduce obesity, wrinkles on the skin, and can be used to address insect bites and colic, nausea, vomiting, anorexia, hiccups, dyspepsia, rheumatism, and excess cellulite.

Word of Caution: An organic component called trans-anethole, present in fennel essential oil, may boost the production of the estrogen hormone. Although this is beneficial for lactating mothers but it is harmful for pregnant women. In heavy doses, it may have narcotic effects and can result in convulsions, hallucinations, and mental imbalance. People suffering from epilepsy or with a history of that condition should avoid using fennel essential oil.

Blending: Fennel oil blends well with Sandalwood, Lavender, Geranium and Rose oils.

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About the Author

Meenakshi Nagdeve, Co-Founder, Organic Facts is a health and wellness enthusiast and is responsible for managing it. She has completed the Nutrition And Healthy Living Cornell Certificate Program, Cornell University, US. She holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Management from IIM Bangalore and B. Tech in Metallurgical Engineering and Materials Science from IIT Bombay. Prior to this, she worked for a few years in IT and Financial services. An ardent follower of naturopathy, she believes in healing with foods. In her free time, she loves to travel and taste different types of teas.

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