Fenugreek Benefits and Side Effects

Fenugreek (Trigonella foenum graecum L.) is an annual plant in the family Fabaceae. Seeds contain alkaloids  and protein high in tryptophan and lysine. Its steroidal saponins and mucilaginous fiber are thought to account for many of the useful effects of fenugreek. The seed of the fenugreek has pharmacological effects, and because of this, is cultivated for use as an natural remedy in China, Turkey and India.

Fenugreek Benefits

One of the fenugreek effects includes its ability increase milk production in lactating females. Ayurvedic doctors prescribe fenugreek to nursing mothers. This effect attributed to the presence of diosgenin in fenugreek. Diosgenin, has been shown experimentally to reproduce milk flow. It is thought that fenugreek stimulate sweat production and that this influences milk production as the two structures are similar. Has been found that fenugreek can enhance a nursing mother’s milk supply within 24 to 72 hours after taking the herb.

Fenugreek showed hepatoprotective activity against alcohol-induced liver damage. Further, fenugreek decreased the toxicity associated with cyclophosphamide and buthionine sulfoximine in mice. Fenugreek may decrease the oxidative stress on the liver, according to a research reported in the “Indian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology” in 2001.

This plant contains 4-hydroxyisoleucine, which appears to increase the body’s production of insulin when blood sugar levels are high. The secretion of insulin from the pancreas is stimulated by 4-hydroxyisoleucine. This substance, is an amino acid derivative that helps the pancreas produce insulin, helps reduce glucose resistance and develops the uptake of glucose. Some researches have shown that patients with type 2 diabetes had noteworthy lower blood sugar levels after eating fenugreek.

Fenugreek may increase male libido and help with the maintenance of normal testosterone levels. Lately, the was verified using a special extract of fenugreek, named Testofen, was shown in a double-blind study of healthy males to significantly increase both libido and the ability to orgasm. Scientists found that men taking fenugreek can boost their sex drive by at least a quarter. A June 2011 study at the Australian Centre for Integrative Clinical and Molecular Medicine found that men aged 25 to 52 (60 healthy men) who took a fenugreek extract twice daily for 6 weeks scored 25 percent higher on tests gauging libido levels than those who took a placebo. This research, “Phytotherapy Research” was published on February 2011 edition.

This plant, has been used for loss of appetite and stomach complaints. Some research suggests that taking a special fenugreek product (FenuLife) before the two biggest meals of the day decreases symptoms of heartburn. Fenugreek are assumed to have  nutritive properties. Animal-based study, rats were given the seed extract orally, mixed together with food, and control animals were monitored in parallel. The findings show that chronic oral administration of the fenugreek seed extract significantly increases food intake and the motivation to eat.The German Commission E (an official government agency similar to the  FDA), has approved the use of fenugreek for treating loss of appetite, and for topical use to treat skin inflammation. Irritable bowel syndrome is a common illness of the digestive system. It can cause bloating, abdominal cramping, and a change in bowel habits. Fenugreek is known to help avoid  aid in dissolving excess mucus in the digestive system, which can help reduce Irritable Bowel Syndrome.

Fenugreek Side Effects

Possible side effects of include gas, bloating, and diarrhea. Fenugreek may change the smell and color of the urine. A uterine stimulant in high doses. Therefore could cause uterine contractions that might lead to preterm labor.

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