Anise Seed Pimpinella anisum
- Common Names
- Anise Seed , Aniseed
- Botanical Name
- Pimpinella anisum
Medicinal Uses & Benefits of Anise Seed
- Medicinal Uses: * Aromatherapy
* Herbal Steam
* Herbal Teas
- Properties: * Abortifacient * Anodyne * Antibacterial * AntiCancer * Aphrodisiac * Aromatic * Carminative * Diaphoretic/sudorific * Diuretic * Expectorant * Galactagogue * Nervine * Stimulant * Stomachic * Tonic
- Parts Used: Seeds, essential oil
- Constituents: choline, sugar, mucilage. the essential oil contains up to 90 percent anethole.
How to Use: Anise Seed
Anise has been a popular remedy here in North America for hundreds of years as carminative, a herb that relieves gas pains and bloating. Other traditional uses include colic, rheumatism, and the familiar licorice-flavor in cough drops. 3
The therapeutic powers of anise's phytochemicals, including creosol and alpapinene, are commonly used in herbal remedies to break up congestion, and ease coughing. Anise is an expectorant that is also antiseptic to the mucous membranes. This means that anise does double duty: it kill germs while clearing the lungs of congestion.1
Anise and the closely related fennel both contain anethol which has estrogenic properties. Both of these herbs have a folklore reputation as tonics for women who are nursing and want to increase milk production , or have menstrual problems like delayed or skimpy periods. 1
Preparation Methods & Dosage :Sweet and very aromatic, anise can be used in tea, or in baking and cooking, the taste compliments cookies, cakes, and pasta dishes. Aniseed gives the Greek liqueur ouzo it's distinctive licorice taste.
Anise Seed Remedies
Anise Seed : Essential Oil Profile
Anise essential oil has a sweet, licorice-like aroma that inspires exhilaration, euphoria and elation. Anise oil improve appetites and lift the mood when diffused in the air before dinner.
Traditional Chinese Medicine Star anise is found in many traditional Chinese and Japanese recipes for food and medicine. It is used for similar purposes as sweet anise, but is considered to be drying and warming.
Anise Seed Side Effects: Narcotic in large doses. Anise seeds contain anethole, a plant hormone similar to human estrogen, that promotes menstruation, and lactation in nursing mothers. Anise should not be used while pregnant and in young babies. The essential oil is for topical use only.
Koehler's Medicinal-Plants 1887
- Flowers:Small white and yellow flowers produced in umbels
- Stem: Tall stalks, 1 to 2 feet in height
- Leaves: Feather like ovate, divided, bright green
- Seeds: The essential oil is distilled from the seeds
- Preferred Habitat: Hot summers needed for seeds to ripen
- Flowering Season:Summer
- Distribution:Eurasia and N. Africa
Regional Traditions :European *
How to Grow Anise Seed
An annual herb the likes full sun and fairly rich soil. Grows to a height of 1 to 2 feet tall. Plant when all danger of frost is over. Gather the seeds in the fall when they start to turn brown. Cut the entire umbel along with a length of stalk, and hang upside down to dry.
Related Species Star anise, Illicium verum , is found in many traditional Chinese and Japanese recipes for food and medicine. It is used for similar purposes as sweet anise, but is a different herb altogether.
History and Traditions & FolkloreAniseed, or anise is one of the earliest known herbs, mentioned in records before the birth of Christ. The Greeks, including Hippocrates, the peoples of Asia Minor, and the Romans found many uses for it. Japanese plant star anise trees on in their temples and on tombs, and use the pounded bark for incense.
Anise is said to increase psychic abilities and ward off the Evil Eye in magical practices. Anise seed can be burned as incense or drunk as a tea to aid in the inducement of spiritual trances. 3
- Balch, Phyllis A . Prescription for Herbal Healing, Harcourt, (2002): , 22
- A.W. Smith. "A Gardener's Handbook of Plant Names:",(1997) The Greeks used teas made from anise and fennel for asthma and other respiratory ailments. They both contain creosol and alpha-pinene, which help to loosen bronchial secretions. ,
- Maud Grieve. "A Modern Herbal",(1931) Carminative and pectoral. Anise enjoys considerable reputation as a medicine in coughs and pectoral affections. In hard, dry coughs where expectoration is difficult, it is of much value. It is greatly used in the form of lozenges and the seeds have also been used for smoking, to promote expectoration. The volatile oil, mixed with spirits of wine forms the liqueur Anisette, which has a beneficial action on the bronchial tubes. ,39
- W.T. Fernie, M.D.. "Herbal Simples Approved for Modern Uses of Cure",(1897) The herb is a variety of the Burnet Saxifrage, and yields an essential oil of a fine blue colour. To make the essence of Aniseed one part of the oil should be mixed with four parts of spirit of wine.(alcohol) This oil, by its chemical basis, "anethol," represents the medicinal properties of the plant. It has a special influence on the bronchial tubes to encourage expectoration, particularly with children.