9 Surprising Benefits Of Star Anise

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  • As the name suggests, Star anise is the hard pericarp of the star anise tree's fruit, which is scientifically known as Illicium verum. This fruit is native to Southeast Asia and parts of China. It can be ground into a valuable powder used as a spice or even used whole in specific preparations and dishes. In this article, we are discussing the Star Anise benefits. 9 Surprising Health Benefits Of Star Anise include Skin Health, Immune System, Respiratory Infections, Sleep Issues, Circulation, Fungal Infections, Digestion, Hormones, and Cancer Risk.

This star-shaped spice is highly desired due to its active chemical compounds, particularly those found in star anise oil. This herb also contains a compound called shikimic acid, an essential part of anti-influenza medications worldwide. The most interesting thing is that extracting and processing this acid takes almost a year. The global demand for influenza medications largely determines the cost of this herb.

However, due to its flavor, this herb has been used for thousands of years for culinary and traditional medical applications, closely resembling the more expensive aniseed and its rich nutrient density. The name star anise is a combination of its shape and its similarity in flavor to aniseed. Although the plants are not related, the presence of anethole in both plants provides the distinctive licorice flavor, which makes it so popular in cooking.

There are a few different variations of star anise, some of which are toxic to consume, so caution should be taken when cultivating your own or purchasing from a new herbalist/natural healer. When used in moderation, this spice can also provide an impressive list of health benefits.

Read Also: Health Benefits of Yellow Bell Pepper

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Health Benefits Of Star Anise

The most notable health benefits of star anise include its ability to promote healthy skin, prevent fungal infections, support respiratory health, lower your risk of cancer, stimulate the immune system, optimize digestion, boost circulation, and aid sleep.

1. Star Anise Benefits for Skin

With a relatively high level of various antioxidants, star anise can help to promote the elimination of free radicals throughout the body, particularly those that can cause oxidative stress in the skin. This can help minimize the appearance of wrinkles, boost skin elasticity, and cover-up old scars and blemishes to keep your skin looking young and vibrant.

Read Also: Best Home Remedies for Oily Skin

2. Immune System

One of the most important stars anise health benefits is improving the immune system. The antibacterial effects of star anise are widely researched and well known. This spice has been used to treat bacterial infections of the stomach and other body parts for centuries. Perhaps most importantly, this spice appears to be effective against several antibiotic-resistant bacterial strains, making it very valuable to the pharmaceutical industry.

3. Respiratory Infections

More specifically, star anise helps in supporting respiratory health, so if you have a cough or a sore throat, or feel the early stirrings of the flu, a cup of anise tea may be able to sort out the inflammation rapidly and neutralize the underlying infection before more severe symptoms arise.

Read Also: 11 Incredible Benefits Of Walnuts Nutrition

4. Sleep Issues

Numerous studies have found that star anise possesses some level of sedative properties attributed to the antioxidant levels and the magnesium content of the spice. It can stimulate the release of certain neurotransmitters that induce relaxation and sleep, making this spice valuable for people who have insomnia and regularly interrupted sleep patterns.

5. Circulation

The most notable mineral found in star anise is iron, and a single tablespoon of these small fruiting bodies contains roughly 13% of your daily recommended amount. While eating an entire tablespoon of these fruits is unlikely, the concentration of iron can still help boost red blood cell production, thus increasing energy levels by promoting circulation and proper oxygenation of the body’s extremities.

6. Fungal Infections

Most notably, this spice has powerful anti-fungal properties. It has been a trusted natural remedy for many fungal infections, including Athlete’s foot, ringworm, Candida, and other common strains. When we talk about the star anise tea benefits, a regular dosage of star anise tea can give your immune system the necessary boost against these pathogens.

7. Digestion

Anecdotal evidence points to star anise as being an effective digestive, and the fruits are commonly eaten after meals to promote proper digestion. It can also help relieve bloating and excess flatulence while easing cramping and improving the bacterial balance in your gut for high nutrient uptake efficiency.

8. Hormones

The effects of star anise on hormone levels are widely studied, as it can have quite a powerful effect on both men and women. In men, it can provide an energy boost and increase sex drive, whereas, in women, it can regulate menstrual cycles, control mood swings, and other hormone-driven side effects of menstruation.

9. Cancer Risk

The diverse range of antioxidants in this spice, from quercetin and kaempferol to thymol and coumaric acid, can all affect oxidative stress in the body. By reducing free radical levels and supporting the immune system, there is a lower risk of mutagenic effects in the body, leading to cancer cells and tumor formation.

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Fungal Infections
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