Fennel is an herb found growing wild in much of the United States. Nutritionists and dieters alike often laud the ability of fennel to aid in weight loss. Specifically, making fennel into a tea and drinking it regularly, along with maintaining a healthy diet and exercise plan, can help suppress appetite, boost metabolism and ultimately aid in weight loss.
There are several ways to take fennel tea for weight loss. Fennel tea can be bought at natural food stores, but you can also make your own at home. Also, when combined with nettle leaves, fennel can create a gentle, soothing tea that's great for weight loss.
To make fennel and nettle tea, combine 1 tsp fennel seed with 2 tsp nettle leaves and steep in 3 cups of water.
If you want to make tea simply with fennel seed, steep 4 tsp seeds in 2 pints of boiling water. Reduce heat to low and simmer for five minutes, and then let stand, covered, for 5 minutes. The strained tea can be drunk hot or iced three to four times daily.
Fennel tea works as an appetite suppressant, a diuretic, an antioxidant and a metabolism booster, all of which are useful if you're trying to lose weight. Fennel also contains healthy levels of B and C vitamins, as well as potassium, magnesium and calcium.
While fennel is a natural supplement, that doesn't mean it can't have potentially harmful side effects. If you have a fennel allergy, drinking fennel tea for weight loss can cause hives, itching, and swelling of the skin. If you have an allergy to carrots or mugwort, you may be sensitive to fennel as well.
Because of its chemical make-up, fennel isn't recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding women or people with epilepsy. Fennel can be toxic in large doses, so be sure not to exceed the dose recommended by your doctor or nutritionist.
Some people assume that natural herbal supplements are miracle cures, but that's not the case. Fennel works slowly over time, and likely won't make much of a difference on its own. Simply adding fennel tea to your diet won't necessarily help you lose weight. Fennel tea must be combined with a healthy diet and exercise plan to produce results.
The Science Behind Fennel
Experts are continually researching the weight loss properties of fennel and other natural supplements, and fennel has been found to promote weight loss in several ways.
As an antioxidant, fennel seeds may be able to physically remove fat cells and mucus from the body. Fennel is also a metabolism stimulator and appetite supressant; this means that those who drink fennel tea burn more calories at rest and also eat less than those who don't.
Fennel has also been found to reduce bloating, indigestion and gas, to work as an anti-inflammatory and to flush excess water and toxins from the body.