Active substance: Clomiphene
Side Effects and Cautions of Fenugreek Possible side effects of fenugreek when taken by mouth include gas, bloating, and diarrhea.
Fenugreek can cause irritation when applied to the skin.
Given its historical use for inducing childbirth, women should use caution when taking fenugreek during pregnancy. Tell your health care providers about any complementary and alternative practices you use.
Give them a full picture of what you do to manage your health.
This will help ensure coordinated and safe care. Fenugreek, known as venthiyam in Tamil and methi in Hindi, is one of the oldest cultivated plants. This native of South Eastern Europe and West Asia is now extensively cultivated in India where its seeds and leaves are an important flavouring ingredient in many regional cuisines.
It has been found that fenugreek is so far the only plant containing an unusual amino acid, known as 4 hydro isoleucine 4 HO-ILE, an element which could help enhance insulin secretion under hyperglycemic conditions, thus increasing insulin sensitivity.
An ICMR report also reveals that consuming 25-100 gm of fenugreek seeds a day diminishes hyperglycemia, while significantly reducing levels of glucose serum cholesterol and triglycerides.
Since the seeds are mucilaginous, they are also effective in soothing heartburns and gastro-intestinal inflammation as they coat the stomach and intestinal lining.
This property is significantly helpful in case of ulcers. The steroidal saponins, which fenugreek contains, help reduce absorption of cholesterol from fatty foods.
The diogenin present in it is actually used to make a semi-synthetic form of estrogen. In fact, methi seems to be a very woman-friendly ingredient: at the onset of puberty, to prevent anaemia in young girls, they are fed with the cooked leaves.
The seeds are said to increase milk flow and they help post-partum mothers tone up their reproductive system after delivery.
For this reason, in some communities, the seeds are fried in ghee, finely powdered and mixed with wheat flour and sugar to prepare a halwa for new mothers.
Cosmetically too, both methi leaves and seeds work wonders for the hair and the skin. A paste of fresh leaves, applied to the scalp regularly, helps lengthen hair and prevent premature greying. At night, applied to the face and washed with warm water, it helps clear the skin and prevent early appearance of wrinkles.
A paste made from the seeds that have been soaked overnight, when applied to the scalp, helps reduce dandruff and other minor fungal or bacterial infections.
Fenugreek also promotes well being: it is a powerful detoxifier, increasing colonic health and overall body cleansing, eliminating bad breath and body odour. For best results, it is advised to have a tea made from fenugreek seeds.
This tea also soothes inflamed stomach and intestines while cleansing the stomach, bowels, kidneys and respiratory tract of excess mucus. On the culinary front, when using seeds, lightly toast them to reduce bitterness and enhance aroma and flavour.