Plant part used: crushed seeds
Extraction method: Steam-distillation
Odor: Sweet, almost peppery, earthy
Country of Origin: India
Use: Fennel is well known throughout the food industry which utilizes all parts of the plant.
Properties: Analgesic, antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antiseptic, antispasmodic, aperitif, carminative, depurative, digestive, diuretic, emmenagogue, expectorant, galactagogue, laxative, stimulant, stomachic, tonic, vermifuge
Blends Well With: Bergamot, black pepper, cardamom, cypress, dill, fir, geranium, ginger, grapefruit, juniper, lavender, lemon, mandarin, marjoram, niaouli, orange, pine, ravensara, rose, rosemary, sandalwood, tangerine, ylang ylang
The name is from the Latin word 'foenum' which means 'hay'. It grows up to 2 meters (6 feet) in height and is a biennial or perennial herb, with green feathery leaves and golden yellow flowers, that bees like. In Medieval times it was known as 'Fenkle' and was a very popular herb with the ancient Chinese, Egyptians and Romans, who believed it conveyed longevity, courage and strength, as well as warding of spirits. Not only did they use it to strengthen eyesight, but they also used it for snakebites, colic and to rid dogs of fleas. Fennel essential oil is extracted from Foeniculum vulgare var. dulce, which is sweet fennel (also known as F. officinale, F. capillaceum and Anethum foeniculum) of the Umbelliferae (Apiaceae) family and is also known as fenkel and Roman fennel. Sweet fennel oil (the one we sell) is extracted from crushed seeds by steam distillation and yield 2 - 4 %. Bitter fennel oil, not used for aromatherapy, is extracted from the crushed seeds and/or the whole herb of the Foeniculum vulgare var.amara plant.
Fennel oil is a remedy for digestive complaints such as flatulence, constipation, colic, nausea, vomiting, anorexia, dyspepsia and hiccups. It is also used in cases of obesity, as it promotes that 'full feeling' and has a diuretic effect that helps to disperse cellulite.
For the mind, it adds courage and strength in the face of adversity. It has a cleansing and toning effect on the skin, helping with bruises, sorting out overly oily skin and to fight wrinkles in more mature complexions (possibly due to the estrogenic properties of the oil).
Sweet fennel oil is powerful and shouldn't be used in large doses, as it may have a narcotic effect. It should be avoided altogether in pregnancy and cases of epilepsy.
It contains high amounts of trans-anethole and for that reason people with estrogen linked cancers, as well as breast-feeding mothers, pregnant women and women suffering from endometriosis should rather avoid it.
As with all essential oils, never use them undiluted. Do not take internally unless working with a qualified and expert practitioner. Keep away from children. If applying an essential oil to your skin always perform a small patch test to an insensitive part of the body (after you have properly diluted the oil in an appropriate carrier.)
Fennel Seed Oil
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