We know that this herb was sacred to the ancient Egyptians because it was found in the Tombs of pharaohs, including King Tutankhamun. Some surviving records show it was used to treat conditions associated with excess phlegm, and to help lactating women. It was a herb much-praised by Hippocrates who, as we have explained, was initiated by ancient Egyptian priests.
Scientists have studied the medical properties of Fenugreek, and the results are quite remarkable. The 2017 study, “A small plant with big benefits: Fenugreek for disease prevention and health promotion” summarises some of the findings.
It is an antioxidant, which means it can protect cells from DNA damage (the cause of many cancers and other conditions). In today’s world, we are bombarded by DNA-damaging toxins so anti-oxidants are very important. There has been a lot of diabetes research involving Fenugreek and it has been shown to keep blood sugar levels under control. It can be used for weight loss, it protects the liver, it boosts testosterone in men, and relieves menstrual cramps in women. Extracts of Fenugreek have been shown to kill breast cancer cells. Not bad for a cooking ingredient!