Constituents and Pharmacology Properties of Fennel.
- Basic Botanical Information of Fennel,Fructus Foeniculi.
- What Is It?General Description of the Fennel Seed.
- History,Region and Habitat of Fennel Origin.
- History and Modern Use of Fennel.Traditional and Ethnic Uses of Fennel.
- Fennel Legends,Myths and Stories.
- Constituents and Pharmacology Properties of Fennel.
- Medicinal Properties,Healing with Fennel for common health problems.
- Various Common Uses Of Fennel.
- Fennel:Administration and Indications Guide,Dosages and Safety.
- Research Update:Fennel.Fructus Foeniculi.Foeniculum vulgare Mill.
Constituents and Pharmacology Properties of Fennel.
Fennel seed contains essential oils (4%), of which 50.0% is trans-anethole, 9.2% (+)-fenchone, 2% estragole (methyl chavicol), plus a- and b-pinene, a-phellandrene, limonene, camphene, and others; fixed oil (17?0%), of which 60?5% is petroselinic acid; the flavonoids kaempferol, quercetin, isoquercitrin, and rutin; protein (16?0%); minerals (relatively high in calcium and potassium); sugars; and vitamins (Bruneton, 1995; ESCOP, 1997; Leung and Foster, 1996; Wichtl and Bissett, 1994).
The Commission E reported that fennel seed promotes gastrointestinal motility and in higher concentrations acts as an antispasmodic. In experiments, anethole and fenchone have been shown to have a secretolytic action in the respiratory tract. In the frog, aqueous fennel extracts raise the mucociliary activity of the ciliary epithelium.
The British Herbal Pharmacopoeia reported its action as carminative (BHP, 1996). Aqueous infusion of bitter fennel seed increased the transport velocity of the isolated ciliated epithelium of a frog esophagus by 12% (ESCOP, 1997; Leung and Foster, 1996; M ller-Limmroth and Frlich, 1980). Fennel administered orally increased the spontaneous movement of the unanesthetized rabbit stomach and taken intravenously reduced the inhibition of stomach movement by sodium pentobarbitone (Niiho et al., 1977). A bitter fennel infusion reduced spasms induced by acetylcholine and barium chloride in vitro in isolated guinea pig ileum and inhibited in situ ileum spasms in vivo in cats (ESCOP, 1997).
Phytochemicals:1,8-cineole, 3-carene, 5-methoxypsoralen, 8-methoxypsoralen, Alanine, Alpha-pinene, Alpha-terpinene, Alpha-terpineol, Alpha-thujene, Alpha-phellandrene, Aluminum, Anisaldehyde, Anisic-acid, Anisic-ketone, Apiole, Arachidates, Arginine, Ascorbic-acid, Aspartic-acid, Avicularin, Benzoic-acid, Bergapten, Beta-phellandrene, Beta-carotene, Beta-sitosterol, Beta-pinene, Boron, Caffeic-acid, Calcium, Camphene, Camphor, Ceryl-alcohol, Choline, Chromium, Cinnamic-acid, Cis-anethole, Cis-ocimene, Citric-acid, Cobalt, Columbianetin Copper, Cynarin, Cystine, D-limonene, Dianethole, Dillapiol, Dipentene, EO, Estragole, Fenchone, Fenchyl-alcohol, Ferulic-acid, Fumaric-acid, Gamma- terpinene, Gamma-tocotrienol, Gentisic-acid, Glutamic-acid, Glycine, Glycollic- acid, Histidine, Imperatorin, Iodine, Isoleucine, Isopimpinellin, Isoquercitrin, Kaempferol, Kaempferol-3-arabinoside, Kaempferol-3-glucuronide, L-limonene, Limonene, Linalool, Linoleic-acid, Magnesium, Malic-acid, Manganese, Marmesin, Methionine, Methyl-chavicol, Myrcene, Myristicin, Nickel,O-coumaric-acid, Oleic-acid, Osthenol, P-cymene, P-hydroxybenzoic-acid, P-coumaric-acid, P-hydroxycinnamic-acid, Palmitic-acid, Pectin, Petroselinic-acid, Phenylalanine, Phosphorus, Photoantheole, Potassium, Proline, Protocatechuic-acid, Psoralen, Quercetin, Quercetin-3-l-arabinoside, Quercetin-3-arabinoside, Quercetin-3-glucuronide, Quinic-acid, Riboflavin, Rutin, Sabinene, Scoparone, Scopoletin, Selenium, Serine, Seselin, Shikimic-acid, Silicon, Sinapic-acid, Stigmasterol, Stigmasterol-palmitate, Syringic-acid, Tartaric-acid, Terpinen-4-ol, Terpinolene,Thiamin, Threonine, Tin, Tocopherol, Trans-ocimene, Trans-anethole Trans-1,8-terpin, Trigonelline, Tryptophan, Tyrosine, Umbelliferone, Urease, Valine, Vanillic-acid, Vanillin, Xanthotoxin, Zinc
The content of essential varies strongly (0.6 to 6%); fruits in the center of an umbel are generally greater, greener and stronger in fragrance. Time of harvest and climate are also important.
The fruit volatile oil components complicated,main constituents known as:trans-anethole 63.4％,limonene13.1％,fenchone l2.1％,other constituents known as estragole4.7％,gamma-terpinene 2.7％,alpha-pinene 1.9%,myrcene 0.7％,beta-pinene 0.4％,camphor0.2％,camphene 0.1%,methoxyphenyl acetone 0.1％,sabinene,alpha-phellandrene,p-cymene,1,8-cineole,4-terpineol,trans-fencho- lacetate,anisaldehyde,etc.They fatty oil of the fruit identified 16 kinds of fatty acids components including:10-octadecenoic acid 38.0％,arachic acid 31.4％,plmitic acid 21.2％,behenic acid 2.8％,myristic acid 2.2％,stearic acid 2,2%,lauric acid 0.2％,pentadecanofc acid 0.2％,henicosanoic acid 0.2%,etc.Fruit also contains stigmasterol,umbelliferone,wax mixture,beta-sitosierol,xanthotoxin,alpha-amyrin,imperatorin,bergapten,marmesin.(see 2)
The essential oil of the most important fennel variety (var.dulce) contains anethole (50 to 80%),limonene (5%),fenchone (5%),estragole (methyl chavicol),safrole,alpha-pinene (0.5%),camphene,beta-pinene,beta-myrcene and p-cymene.In contrast,the uncultivated form (var.vulgare) contains often more essential oil,but since it is characterized by the bitter fenchone (12 to 22%),it is of little value.
The best varieties of Fennel yield from 4 to 5 per cent of volatile oil (sp. gr. 0.960 to 0.930), the principal constituents of which are Anethol (50 to 60 per cent) and Fenchone (18 to 22 per cent). Anethol is also the chief constituent of Anise oil.
The essential oil of the most important fennel variety (var. dulce) contains anethole (50 to 80%), limonene (5%), fenchone (5%), estragole (methyl-chavicol), safrole, α-pinene (0.5%), camphene, beta-pinene, beta-myrcene and p-cymene. In contrast, the uncultivated form (var. vulgare) contains often more essential oil, but since it is characterized by the bitter fenchone (12 to 22%), it is of little value.
Fenchone is a colourless liquid possessing a pungent, camphoraceous odour and taste, and when present gives the disagreeable bitter taste to many of the commercial oils. It probably contributes materially to the medicinal properties of the oil, hence only such varieties of Fennel as contain a good proportion of fenchone are suitable for medicinal use.
There are also present in oil of Fennel, d-pinene, phellandrine, anisic acid and anisic aldehyde. Schimmel mentions limonene as also at times present as a constituent.
There is reason to believe that much of the commercial oil is adulterated with oil from which the anethol or crystalline constituent has been separated. Good oil will contain as much as 60 per cent.
Saxon Fennel yields 4.7 per cent of volatile oil, containing 22 per cent of fenchone.
Russian, Galician and Roumanian, which closely resembles one another, yield 4 to 5 per cent of volatile oil, of which about 18 per cent is fenchone. They have a camphoraceous taste.
French sweet or Roman Fennel yields only 2.1 per cent. of oil, containing much less anethol and with a milder and sweeter taste, probably due to the entire absence of the bitter fenchone.
French bitter Fennel oil differs considerably, anethol being only present in traces. The oil (Essence de Fenouil amer) is distilled from the entire herb, collected in the south of France, where the plant grows without cultivation.
Indian Fennel yields only 0.72 per cent of oil, containing only 6.7 per cent of fenchone.
Sicilian Fennel oil is yielded from F. piperitum.
It was formerly the practice to boil Fennel with all fish, and it was mainly cultivated in kitchen gardens for this purpose. Its leaves are served nowadays with salmon, to correct its oily indigestibility, and are also put into sauce, in the same way as parsley, to be eaten with boiled mackerel.
The seeds are also used for flavouring and the carminative oil that is distilled from them, which has a sweetish aromatic odour and flavour, is employed in the making of cordials and liqueurs, and is also used in perfumery and for scenting soaps. A pound of oil is the usual yield of 500 lb. of the seed.
Pharmacology Effects and Findings of Fennel.
China Scientists and herbalists found various pharmacological effects of the herb Fennel:(2)
"1.The effects of digestive system:
1.1 Effects on gastrointestinal movement:Fennel on rabbit in vivo can promote bowel movements. Anethole 2.5×10(-5) g/ml of isolated mouse intestine stimulant, enrichment appeared relaxation, relaxation of the bowel no response to acetylcholine. Foeniculum oil on mice early in vitro intestinal stimulant, then makes it flaccid, approximately 25% of this relaxation effect of papaverine, anethole about 28%, about 3% anise ketone, anisaldehyde about 4% , limonene is about 2%, eucalyptol about 1%. Volatile oil acting on guinea pig ileum longitudinal muscle bundles, enhance its contraction, EC50 is 6-7μg /ml.Cumin acetone extract of quail in vitro stimulant rectum, the active ingredient is fennel brain shrinkage reaction is histamine-like effect. The tiny water-filled balloon rabbit pyloric sphincter implantation layer, recording changes in pressure inside the balloon gastric motility was observed at intravenous sodium pentobarbital pent-bar inhibition of gastric motility status, oral cumin 24mg / kg, gastric motility can appear there meaning of recovery, especially in 30 minutes and 35 minutes, compared with control group there was a significant difference after administration.
1.2 Anti-ulcer effect:Fennel 600mg / kg duodenum or oral administration, inhibition of gastric secretion in rats of about 38.9%, of Shay ulcer gastric secretion inhibition was 34.9%, while the secretion of gastric stress ulcer inhibition was 33.8%. But at the end of cumin administered orally or duodenum, irrespective of aspirin-induced ulcer or stress ulcer in rats had no significant effect.
1.3 Choleretic effect:Fennel show choleretic effect, can promote the secretion of bile, bile and increase the solid content.
2.The Effects on the trachea:Fennel volatile oil on tracheal smooth muscle relaxation, the volatile oil was dissolved in 12% ethanol to the anesthetized guinea pigs orally, can increase fluid secretion trachea, cutting off the stomach does not affect the nerve that this effect is not The reaction caused by the stomach.
3.The Effects on the liver:liver removal of some rats, Fennel volatile oil administered 10 days, an increase in liver tissue regeneration,increased liver weight than the control group.
4.The hormone-like effects:male rats to fennel acetone extract 15 days,testes,vas deferens reduce total protein content, total protein refined wing and prostate significantly increased, these organs acidic, alkaline phosphatase activity decreased; female , breast, fallopian tubes, endometrium, myometrium weight gain in rats with acetone extract 10 days, appear inside the vagina and sexual cycle keratosis promote that fennel had estrogen-like effects. Another report, that the active ingredient is anethole and polymers such as dimerization anethole.
5.Other effects:fennel volatile oil,anethole has a central brain paralysis for frog,frog myocardium start slightly excited,then cause paralysis.It showed a curare-like neuromuscular paralysis, muscle excitability itself weakened by the fennel extract a plant polysaccharides have anti-tumor effect. Volatile oil of fungal spores, bird Mycobacterium, Staphylococcus aureus,have sterilization."(2)
1: Fennel Seed or Xiao HuiXiang,the seed of Foeniculum vulgare Mill,a pungent herb nature warm,its botanical introduction,chemical constituents,history and uses since ancient till today.
2: see CHMM(Zhong Hua Ben Cao,or Chinese Herbal Materia Medica)
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