Fenugreek, better known to us as Methi and botanically from the Fabaceae family is used as an herb (dried or fresh leaves), a spice (seeds) and also as a vegetable (fresh leaves that is methi and sprouts).
One of the healthiest seeds used in cooking and also for its medicinal properties, slightly bitter in taste, is known to have an array of health benefits. Fenugreek leaves or methi leaves, the wonder herb, being rich in vitamins minerals, iron, calcium and proteins increases its culinary value while fenugreek seeds, being a rich source of dietary soluble fiber helps provide essential control on various health conditions such as body fluids, blood pressure, heart rate and diabetes mellitus.
BENEFITS OF FENUGREEK THE MULTI-TALENTED SEEDS
- Prevents Diabetes - Well known to control blood sugar levels in diabetic people by slowing down the sugar absorption rate in the blood.
- Reduces Cholesterol Contains Saponins, that help reduce the bodys absorption of cholesterol from fatty foods, especially the bad LDL cholesterol and triglycerides.
- Aids in Weight loss - Being a natural soluble fiber source and suppressing appetite, increases the supply of energy and modulates carbohydrate metabolism.
- Increases breast milk supply - Fenugreek has Galactagogue properties helping in the supply of breast milk for nursing mothers.
- Protects from Cancer The mucilage in fenugreek bind with foods flushing out toxins from the body and thus prevents cancer.
FENUGREEK SEEDS IN DIABETES MANAGEMENT
Fenugreek seeds, a source of soluble fiber, contain Galactomannan , an essential constituent that helps lower the rate of digestion and absorption of carbohydrates. This in turn helps lower the blood glucose levels in people with diabetes and improves overall glucose tolerance. Besides this, fenugreek seeds also an unusual amino acid (4-hydroxyisleucine), having anti-diabetic properties such as enhancing insulin secretion under hyperglycemic conditions, and increasing insulin sensitivity, thus helping in the treatment of type 1 and type 2 diabetes mellitus.
BEST WAYS OF CONSUMING FENUGREEK
- Dry roast fenugreek seeds on medium-high heat for one to two minutes, Stir frequently and add 1 teaspoon over Indian curries , salads and stir-fry dishes.
- Soak 1 teaspoon overnight in water and gulp the next morning with 1 glass water
- Sprout fenugreek seeds by soaking them in water overnight , keeping them in a jar covered with a cloth for few days until tiny green shoots appear. The sprouted fenugreek seeds can be added to any kind of salads.
- Fresh fenugreek leaves can be added to rotis , parathas , dosas and idlis.
- Herbal teas made with fenugreek seeds, lemon and honey is an effective remedy used to treat fevers.
- Fenugreek Seed Tea :
Take 1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds and crush slightly. Soak in hot water for 3 hours. Strain the water, add 1 tea bag or tea leaves , add lemon and a pinch of honey for flavor and enjoy your cup of hot herbal tea.
- Methi Sprouts Salad:
Soak methi seeds in water overnight in a jar and cover with a muslin cloth for few days until you see green shoots appear. Once sprouted completely, make a salad using 2 tbsp methi sprouts, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, capsicum or any other veggies of your choice. Season with lemon and pepper and enjoy this healthy salad.