Anise in Ayurveda: Uses, Benefits and More

Published by LivAyur
at November 8, 2021

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Anise, also known as Pimpinella anisum, is a flavorful and aromatic herb, widely used to flavour dishes and drinks. Although it is indigenous to the Mediterranean region, it is now also cultivated in India, in the states of Uttar Pradesh, Orissa and Punjab.

Anise is not only a culinary herb; it is also a popular herbal medicine used to treat various digestive and respiratory disorders. It is known as Shvetpushpa or Anisuna in Sanskrit and is vastly used by Ayurveda in treating flatulence and loss of appetite.   

Ayurvedic Properties of Anise

Anise has Madhura (sweet), Tikta (bitter) and Katu (pungent) taste and exhibits a hot potency. It is an Ushna Virya herb that helps pacify Vata and Kapha Dosha while increasing Pitta in the body.   

Medicinal Properties of Anise

  • Anise is highly rich in antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties. 
  • It is an abortifacient agent and helps to induce abortion.
  • It exhibits antiparasitic effects and helps to expel parasitic worms from the body.
  • Anise is an anticatarrhal herb. Anticatarrhal herbs help to remove excess mucus from the body.
  • It is rich in antioxidants, and therefore, aids in reducing the free radical damage in the body.
  • Anise also exhibits antispasmodic properties.
  • It is a carminative agent which helps prevent and relieve flatulence from the body.
  • It is also highly rich in expectorant properties and therefore is vastly used to treat coughs.

Uses and Benefits of Anise

  • Anise is highly effective in treating and preventing common colds, coughs and fevers.
  • The antimicrobial, anticatarrhal and expectorant properties of anise make it extremely effective in relieving the symptoms of bronchitis.
  • The antispasmodic and expectorant activities of anise also help in treating asthma. 
  • Anise is used to induce menstruation and relieve menstrual pain.
  • It is highly beneficial to improve digestive health. It relieves colic, removes flatulence, treats constipation, cures haemorrhoids and prevents the formation of stomach ulcers. 
  • Anise also helps to reduce the inflammation in the mouth and pharynx.
  • It is very effective in the treatment of pertussis.
  • Anise helps to treat loss of appetite or anorexia. 
  • It also helps to fight against mites and lice. It has strong anti-fungal properties that help prevent head-lice. 

How To Use Anise?

  • You can use aniseeds as a flavouring agent in foods. It is the easiest and the most convenient way to use anise.
  • You may also make anise tea by boiling aniseeds in water. It is highly effective to cure coughs and colds.   
  • Anise can also be used as an oil. You may apply this oil to your head or skin to treat various disorders. 

Side Effects and Precautions

  • Anise can induce abortion. Therefore, it should not be taken during pregnancy.
  • Although there are no adverse effects of anise, it may cause allergic reactions of the skin, respiratory tract and GI tract in some people.  
  • People who are sensitive to anethole should avoid taking anise.
  • Anise oil should not be used by people who have dermatitis or allergic skin conditions. 
  • People who have a Pitta imbalance should also avoid anise as it can increase Pitta Dosha in the body. 

Takeaway:

Anise is a highly potent herb used to treat various disorders such as bronchitis, asthma, flatulence, indigestion, loss of appetite, etc. It exhibits many medicinal properties that make it one of the most effective herbs in natural and holistic medicine. Using aniseeds regularly can yield various benefits to the body. However, expert consultation before usage is recommended.

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