Anise (Pimpinella anisum) is a spice and at the same time a medicinal plant that is particularly known for its effects against coughs, colds and digestive problems. In addition, the compounds it contains have strong antimicrobial properties, which means anise can even protect against multi-resistant bacteria.
Anise is believed to have originated in the Eastern Mediterranean, the Balkans and Asia Minor. The plant belongs to the umbelliferous family and is known by various names. For example, anise is called Roman fennel, round fennel, sweet caraway or arnis.
Reduces inflammation and spasms
Umbelliferous plants are plants containing a variety of coumarin compounds, and coumarin is known to inhibit blood clotting. Additionally, it reduces inflammation and can prevent cramps.
Already in ancient Greece, anise was used as a medicinal plant for respiratory and digestive problems. For example, anise reduces flatulence and feelings of fullness.
In one study, taking anise also reduced the symptoms of a subtype of functional dyspepsia.
This was the so-called “postprandial distress syndrome” (PDS), in which an increased feeling of fullness and early satiety occurs. This results in meals not being finished, resulting in insufficient calories and nutrients being consumed. The quality of life of those affected is usually significantly reduced.
Anti-diabetic and anti-inflammatory effects
According to another study, the seeds of anise and oil extracted from the medicinal plant also protect intestinal function. And according to the researchers, the anise seeds and anise oil appear to counteract diabetes, relieve cramps and reduce pain and inflammation.
The experts add that anise seeds and anise oil are also effective against bacteria, viruses and fungi. This is confirmed by the results of another research paper published in March of this year.
Anise against bacteria, fungi and viruses
This investigated whether anise extracts have potential antioxidant, phytochemical and antimicrobial properties against multi-resistant (MDR) bacteria. Anise extracts are known to contain various compounds such as flavonoids, terpenes and essential oils, which have antimicrobial properties, the experts report.
The researchers found that all of the multi-resistant bacteria they examined were very sensitive to the antibacterial effects of anise. The team assumes that the antibacterial effect is due to the phenolic compounds, which include catechins, methyl gallates, caffeic acid and syringic acids.
Taken together, the study results show that anise can not only help reduce digestive problems, but also protect against dangerous fungi, viruses and even multi-resistant bacteria. (as)