Nearly everyone has experienced some form of digestive discomfort at some point in their life, and for many people, it is a common occurrence. In many parts of the world, these issues have been treated with herbal remedies for centuries. Fennel is one such herb, and has long been used to help alleviate digestive discomfort.
There are various forms of digestive problems that people regularly experience. While there are certainly multiple diseases or conditions that can be responsible for digestive disorders, many doctors believe that most of these disorders can be linked to a combination of five simple root causes. These causes are:
• Dehydration: Many people drink coffee, soda, tea, and other flavored beverages, and do not drink enough pure water to supplement their body’s needs. This can lead to dehydration, which has several consequences.
• Nutritional Deficiency: While most people in North America and Europe get plenty of macronutrients (proteins, carbohydrates, fats and fiber), a large portion are lacking in micronutrients, such as vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids, and others. Our body needs these for daily function, but the typical diet provides very few of these nutrients.
• Nutritional Excess: The body can likewise suffer from too much of one kind of nutrient. Too much protein, too many fats, and too many refined carbohydrates wreak havoc on the digestive system. Eating too much, too quickly, or too frequently is also damaging to the digestion.
• Dysbiosis: Many people are not aware that living in the digestive system are thousands of bacteria that are not only helpful to us, but are actually essential for healthy digestion. Things like antibiotics and poor digestion can kill off these good bacteria and permit the growth of harmful bacteria. Restoring good bacteria can be quite simple, by changing the diet to a positive place for the bacteria, and by taking probiotic supplements.
• Stress: This can include physical stress and emotional stress. Overtaxing the body with too much work, too little rest, or exposure to toxic substances can have a severe effect on digestion. Furthermore, drawn-out emotional stress puts the whole body under heavy tension, and will affect all systems, including digestion.
A doctor can help to determine which of these factors may apply to each specific case, and determine a course of action thereafter. Eliminating these causes may also help the doctor determine if there is something more serious at work.
Fennel has been used for centuries to aid various digestive issues, and has several qualities that make it very effective at doing so. Equipped with a good number of vitamins, minerals, and essential oils, fennel helps to supplement a diet that may be lacking in these important micronutrients. Furthermore, fennel also contains dietary fiber, which helps to ease constipation. Its essential oils also help to relax the muscles in the digestive tract, releasing trapped gas and easing muscle spasms. This can reduce painful cramping, as well as bloating and flatulence. Fennel also encourages the absorption of nutrients, and has antibacterial properties that help cleanse the digestion of harmful bacteria. Finally, fennel is safe enough in appropriate doses that it may be given to small children, even infants who are nursing.