This seems like an amazing herb. I just got some seeds to use for thinning mucous. ...however
What the heck do I do with them? They are as hard as gravel. Should I soak them over night and drink the water next morning? If I do that, should I also eat the soggy seeds? Should I make a hot tea from them? Should I try to pulverize them into powder? Manually powder them; or can I put them in the coffee grinder?
Fenugreek is an erect, strongly scented, robust, annual herb, about 30-80 cm high. It has compound leaves of light green color, 2 - 2.5 cm long; with Yellow flowers and thin pointed pods. The seeds are brownish yellow and have peculiar odor.
It has been used since ancient times both as a food and medicine by the people living on the shores of Mediterranean and across Asia.
Fenugreek has excellent medicinal virtues. Its regular use helps keeps the body clean and healthy. The leaves of Fenugreek are aromatic, cooling and a mild laxative. The seeds have soothing effect on the skin. They increase the secretion and discharge of urine, promote lactation in nursing mothers. They are the best cleanser within the body, highly mucus solvent and soothing agents . Fenugreek has the ability to soften and dissolve hardened masses of accumulated mucus. It helps to expel toxic wastes through lymphatic systems. It expels mucus and phlegm from the bronchial tubes.
It has antiseptic properties and kills infection in the lungs. Fenugreek contains lecithin which dissolves cholesterol and contains lipotropic (fat dissolving) substances, which dissolves deposits of fat, prevents fatty accumulates and water retention. The constituents in the seeds contain saponin closely related to those in Yucca. Fenugreek is also considered an aphrodisiac.
During the early stages of any of the respiratory tract infections such as Bronchitis, Influenza, Sinusitis, Catarrh and suspected Pneumonia, Fenugreek tea helps to perspire, dispel toxicity and shorten gestation period of fever. One can take up to four cups of Fenugreek tea. The quantity may be reduced as the condition improves. To improve flavor few drops of lemon juice can be used. During the treatment no other food or nourishment must be taken as fasting aids the body to correct respiratory problems in few days.
Tea made from Fenugreek seeds is equal in value to quinine in reducing fevers. Fenugreek used with lemon juice and honey also helps reduce fevers. Seeds when moistened with water become slightly mucilaginous and the tea made from this has the power to dissolve sticky substance like mucus.
Fenugreek tea has a soothing effect on the inflamed stomach and intestines. It cleans the stomach, bowls and kidneys. It helps healing peptic ulcers by providing coating of mucilaginous matter. Fenugreek leaves (preferably fresh) are beneficial in the treatment of indigestion, flatulence and a sluggish liver.
The leaves of Fenugreek help in blood formation. The cooked leaves prevent anemia and run down condition in girls usually associated with the onset of puberty and a sudden spurt in growth. The seeds also help in recovering from anemia being rich in iron. The seeds help restore the senses of taste and smell. The sense of taste becomes dull due to improper functioning of salivary glands which often becomes clogged with mucus and accumulated juices causing swelling. Similarly the sense of smell is obstructed due to prolonged accumulation of mucus and other impurities in the nose where the olfactory nerves (the special sensory nerve of smell) are based.
The tea is beneficial for the bad breath and Body Odor . Unpleasant odors emanate from the body due to accumulations of hardened mucus and other toxins in the nasal and oral passages, the gastrointestinal tract, the urinary tract, the blood and vagina. Fenugreek tea taken regularly helps remove these accumulates from the spots where mouth wash and soap can never penetrate.
Fenugreek seeds can also be taken for diabetes. The normal dose is 2 tsp. of powdered seeds take daily in broth or milk. Two tea spoons can also be swallowed as whole daily or they can be soaked in a cup of water at night and the water taken in the morning.
Fenugreek seeds are also used for removing dandruff. Two table spoons should be soaked overnight in water. In the morning softened seeds can be ground to a fine paste and applied on scalp and left on for half an hour. The hair is then thoroughly washed with soap-nut (ritha nut) solution or shikakai. A paste of Fenugreek leaves applied over the scalp regularly before washing the scalp also cures dandruff.
An infusion of the leaves is used as a gargle for recurrent mouth ulcers. A gargle made from the seeds is best for ordinary sore throat. The solution used to gargle should be stronger than tea. Two tablespoons of Fenugreek seeds are put in a liter of water and allowed to simmer for half an hour over a low flame. It is then cooled to room temperature and strained. Then the whole liquid is used as gargle.
Fenugreek tea is used as a douche in curing very effective leucorrhoea. The solution is prepared in the same way as the throat gargle.
Poultice made with Fenugreek leaves can be used for external and internal swellings. It can also be used for burns due t0 its cooling properties.
Fenugreek seeds made in gruel, given to nursing mothers increase the flow of milk.
Steaming is considered the best method of cooking leaves. In this, the vitamins are retained and the vegetables become palatable. The drained leaves can be compared to pulses for their protein content.
Fresh Fenugreek leaves paste applied over the scalp regularly before bath helps hair grow, preserves natural color and keeps hair silky. The same paste can be applied on face every night before going to bed and then washed with warm water in the morning. This will prevent one from getting pimples, black heads, dryness of face and early appearance of wrinkles. It improves complexion and make one look younger.
In Indian homes, Fenugreek seeds are generally used as a condiment for flavoring. They form an ingredient of curry powder.
Fenugreek is rich in Vitamin A and D. It also contains an oil that resembles cod liver oil. Fenugreek is rich in minerals and is high in protein. It has Vitamin B1, B2, B3 and contains chlorine, lecithin and iron. Fresh Fenugreek leaves are available at many Indian and Middle Eastern Grocery stores. While the seeds are available in almost all grocery stores.