There are a number of spices which comes with incredible amount of health benefits. One of such spice is the chakra phool or star anise. This is used frequently as an exotic spice in Chinese and Indian cuisines. This spice has got a star shape and possesses licorice-like flavor. In this article we will take a look on some of the health benefits of chakra phool or star anise.
What Is Chakra Phool Or Star Anise?
Chakra phool or star anise originated in South China and it has been used in Asian as well as Eurasian cooking since several years. This age-old spice has got licorice-like flavor and it is popular for its great medicinal properties. Star anise is famous by the name of “Chakra phool” in India.
The name suggests that the spice is star-shaped and it contains approximately 5-8 segments which have dark brown color.
Chakra phool or star anise has got a strong and delightful fragrance and is thus primarily used in chicken, biryani, and some other vegetarian recipes. But now, we are here to think “apart from the kitchen” and its use as a spice in dishes. We will talk about its beneficial effects on human health.
This small flower-like spice is a storehouse of several key ingredients, which can actually help combat a lot of illnesses. Star anise is dried in the sun till it turns grayish-brown and then it is grounded to form a powder and used for treating several health ailments.
Chakra phool or star anise supply a lot of polyphenols and flavonoids and these are mostly responsible for the medicinal benefits of the spice.(1)
12 Amazing Health Benefits Of Chakra Phool Or Star Anise
Chakra Phool or Star Anise Is Used For Diabetes:
Star anise is the spice that is loaded with antioxidants and vitamins such as vitamin A and vitamin C, which help in fighting against free radicals that are quite responsible for diabetes and also early ageing.
It Is Used For Proper Digestion:
Chakra phool or star anise also helps in improving digestion, alleviating cramps and reducing symptoms of nausea. Consuming the tea prepared from star anise powder after meals aids in treating digestive ailments like gas, bloating, indigestion, and constipation.
Chakra Phool or Star Anise Is Beneficial In Treating Cough And Cold:
Star anise oil contains terpineol, thymol, and anethole, which is used in treating flu and cough. The anti-oxidant rich chakra phool or star anise is great for building your immunity and also it aids in fighting against free radicals. The antibacterial and antifungal properties along with a rich concentration of vitamin A and vitamin C in this spice make it an excellent source for treating cough and cold.
Apart from this, star anise is also known to benefit you in bronchitis and asthma; and this is because of the presence of shikimic acid that offers it its antiviral properties.
It Is Beneficial For Women’s Health:
Chakra phool or star anise is known to benefit women’s health in several ways. In fact this spice is used traditionally in China for helping women during their pregnancy and also helping new mothers for increasing their milk production. It is true that Traditional Chinese practitioners usually recommend star anise for pregnant women.
Researchers have found that chakra phool had an estrogenic effect because of the compound anethole, which aids in modulating hormonal functions in case of women.
Star anise is also known to enhance the functioning of immune system and stave off illness in women during the important time of pregnancy or lactation.
Apart from this, chakra phool or star anise can also be used in enhancing the health of female reproductive organs.
Chakra Phool or Star Anise Is Used In Treating Cancer:
Some animal and test-tube research has indicated that the antioxidant property of star anise might even possess anti-cancer properties like reducing the tumor size.(2,3)
However, more research is still essential for better understanding on this in human health.
One study that was conducted by School of Biochemistry of Devi Ahilya University shows that star anise reduces the size of tumors, reduces oxidative stress and thus has got an immense anti-carcinogenic potential. Star anise helps in preventing free radical damage because of its antioxidant properties. This reduces the risk of getting cancer and also heart diseases and diabetes.
Chakra Phool or Star Anise Benefits In Treating Candida And Fungal Infection:
There are various studies that have shown that chakra phool or star anise exhibits some antifungal activity against candida albicans that is the yeast. The Korean Journal of Medical Mycology also states that star anise can even prevent throat and mouth infections.
There are some agricultural research that has found that transanethole that is derived from chakra phool or star anise might inhibit the growth of pathogenic fungi is some edible crops.
It Helps In Treating Rheumatism and Joint Pain:
Chakra phool or star anise oil when applied topically acts as an excellent treatment for back pain, rheumatism and joint pain. However, you need to know that before making use of this oil, it should be combined with carrier oil and also massaged in to your affected areas.
It Fights Against Free Radicals:
Antioxidants are known to fight against free radicals that might result in cellular damage and might be responsible for diseases such as heart problems, diabetes, and even cancer. It is being produced continually in our body as a metabolic byproduct. The excessive production as well as deposition can be neutralized only by consuming foods that are packed with antioxidants.
There are reports that have shown a potential antioxidant property of chakra phool or property. Star anise contains a chemical known as Linalool that is known to provide antioxidant property to the spice. Vitamin A and vitamin C even contributes to the antioxidant property of chakra phool or star anise.
Chakra Phool or Star Anise Is Effective Against Flu:
Chakra phool or star anise is a wonderful source of Shikimic acid and it has got a potential antiviral property when it is combined with another compound, known as quercetin, which is a substance rich in antioxidant. Combining these two chemicals helps you in preventing influenza.
It Is Good For Heart:
This spice, in fact the oil of this spice helps in maintaining the level of blood pressure. This in turn reduces the pressure of your heart. In addition, because the star anise oil is detoxifying in nature, it aids in improving the flow of blood and also keep your heart quite healthy and well balanced. The chakra phool or star anise oil rejuvenates your heart and keep its quite healthy and lively.
Chakra Phool or Star Anise Promotes Better Sleep:
Who does not like to have a good night sleep? Well, if you are suffering from worries, tension or interrupted sleep then you definitely need to try chakra phool or star anise. This spice has got mild sedative properties which can actually assist your nerves in settling down and also helps you have a good night’s sleep.
So, try one cup of chakra phool or star anise tea before going to bed if you have difficulty sleeping. This will work as a great treatment for sleeping issues.
Chakra Phool or Star Anise Increases Sex Drive:
It is true that chakra phool or star anise offers a lot of health benefits; however the Japanese star anise can also cause some serious side effects such as seizures, nausea, and hallucinations, along with some other physical symptoms. The pure Chinese chakra phool or star anise is usually considered safe in most people, but there might be few allergic reactions in some individuals.
So, in order to remain safe and keep away from any side effects you need to check the source of the chakra phool or star anise that you are purchasing and be very much sure that you are buying the Chinese variety of star anise. Moreover, we also suggest not taking excess of the spice at once so as to avoid any accidental intoxication.
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