Fennel makes a delicious juicing ingredient (try The Natural Energiser for a good example). Now researchers have claimed fennel could help millions of women beat the monthly misery of pre-menstrual tension.
Young women who took drops made from the plant’s seeds felt less depressed and found it easier to get on with their jobs, their friends and their family.
It is believed that the liquorice flavoured seeds could help to rebalance the female sex hormones which lay behind some of the symptoms of PMT, the Daily Mail reported.
Around three-quarters of women suffer with PMT, with up to 40 per cent claming that it impacts on their quality of life, and minority becoming violent or suffering severe depression.
PMT is also said to have an economic impact with time off or loss of productivity estimated to cost employers £3,000 a year for every female staff member.
Scientists in Iran, where fennel already has a variety of medical uses, looked the affect it had on 36 women who were split into three groups.
One group took a fennel extract from three days before their period until three days afterwards, the second exercised regularly and the third did nothing differently.
The symptoms eased for those exercising, but the biggest difference was for those taking the fennel supplement, the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology’s annual conference heard.
Dr Hassan Pazoki, of Urmia University, said: “After eight weeks, the severity of symptoms had reduced so much that they could do their jobs and have a normal relationships with their friends and family. Depression was also reduced.”
His team believe that combining exercise with the fennel extracts could have an even bigger impact.
Although bitter, the drops do not have any side effects.
But Professor John Studd, of the London PMS and Menopause Clinic, dismissed the findings, claiming any impact was likely to be psychological.
Earlier this year a separate study suggested that eating broccoli, sesame seeds and other plant foods rich in iron could help combat PMT.
The benefits of eating fennel have been rumoured for many years, and it was introduced to Britain by the Romans, whose warriors are said to have eaten it to make them strong.
Get your juice on!
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2013 Miles in 2013
This year I am trying to complete 2013 miles self-powered miles. It is has been 10 years since my cousin’s son Adam lost his fight with Cystic Fibrosis. Adam was just 18 years old when when he lost his lifelong battle with CF, the UK’s most common life-threatening inherited disease. Despite spending large parts of his short life in hospital Adam never once complained, not even of a headache and was determined to make the most of everyday.
My 2013 miles in 2013 challenge is in aid of the Cystic Fibrosis Trust as I have been surprised since I started fundraising for the CF Trust just how many people are unaware of this disease and so I hope my efforts will not just raise money, but also awareness of the UK’s most most common life-threatening inherited disease.
The first person to commit to sponsoring my 2013 mile challenge has committed to 1p per mile (£20.13 in total) and this got me thinking. I am hoping that as many as possible of those reading this will commit to do the same and the best thing is, if each person does this on a “pay as you go” type approach all you will need to part with is approx £2 just after each pay day. In January I completed 205.9 miles, in February I completed a further 200.9 miles, in March I completed 185.7 miles, in April I completed 192.1 miles, in May I completed 168 miles and in June I completed 145 miles. If you can please spare £10.98 to help the Cystic Fibrosis Trust it will be greatly appreciated.
The easiest way to give your sponsorship is to visit my Just Giving page: http://www.justgiving.com/2012-AYearWithoutBeer-CF.
2013 Miles in 2013 – The rules
The rules for my 2013 miles in 2013 challenge are quite simple:
- All miles must be completely self powered (no motors, sails, etc)
- I must be able to evidence all miles, either via GPS or with a picture of any static gym equipment
To complete my 2013 miles I will be running, cycling, rowing and who knows, I might even try a few other self powered methods along the way.