Fenugreek – The Healing Spice

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FENUGREEK

Fenugreek (SCIENTIFIC NAME- Trigonella foenum-graecum) is a legume and it has been used as a spice throughout the world to enhance the sensory quality of foods. Fenugreek in India is know as menthee (मेंथी). The seeds and green leaves of fenugreek are used in food as well as in medicinal qualities such as anti-diabetic,  antioxidant, and immunological activities. Fenugreek is an annual plant belongs to the family Leguminosae. This plant’s leaves, seeds are used for herbal uses. Fenugreek seeds are very popular in India

Cultivation

India is the largest producer of fenugreek in the world. During 2016–17, production was 121,775 tonnes of seeds from an area of 96,304 hectares (237,970 acres). Its seed is traded as a spice, and in an oil extract form as Oleoresin. Within the country, its seed production is the highest in the state of Rajasthan. This plant is generally cultivated throughout the year in areas where the climate is moderately cool, and frost free.

Nutritional Value –

Fenugreek contains 23–26% protein, 6–7% fat and 58% carbohydrates of which about 25% is dietary fiber. Fenugreek is also a rich source of iron.

A) Leaves

Leaves contain about 86.1% moisture, 4.4% protein, 0.9% fat, 1.5% minerals, 1.1% fiber, and 6% carbohydrates. The mineral and vitamins present in leaves include calcium, zinc iron, phosphorous, riboflavin, carotene, thiamine, niacin and vitamin C, ascorbic acid, β-carotene

B) Seed

Fenugreek is known for its pleasantly bitter, slightly sweet seeds. The chemical in fenugreek seeds are diosgenins, rhaonticins, isovitexin. These are very complex structure  present in small quantity this compound has lots of healing benefits.

Health Benefits –

FENUGREEK

A) Help To Prevent Weight Gain and Diabetics

Fenugreek may be able to assist you with weight loss as its effects on insulin and blood sugar. Insulin is a major barrier that many people do not realize impairs weight loss, with improved blood glucose control normally equating to greater weight loss.

B) Thins Blood and reduce heart attack

Fenugreek actually prevents the aggregation of platelets together this reduces the likelihood of these clots blocking tiny blood vessels, or even larger blood vessels which are important to the brain or heart itself.

C) Can Improve Skin Health

Fenugreek contains the extremely rare fiber type known as mucilage, a sticky fiber that gels in the presence of water, forming a sort of paste. Mucilage is an excellent moisturizing agent, as it traps water in its matrix structure and in addition, application of a fenugreek seed paste also decreases the but amount of melanin present in the skin.

How to include this in diet –

In India, most of the people use the seed part of Fenugreek. In most of the household people make a paste of fenugreek then the little amount is added in daily cooking. Most of the curry has this paste added as this increase taste and aroma in dishes.

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