Star Anise fills the nature around us, besides other wondrous plants and herbs essential for our lives and health.
Hence, we should utilize these natural goods and benefit from them as much as possible.
In this article, we will talk about Star Anise and discuss its benefits and uses.
What is Star Anise?
It is a type of spice extracted from an evergreen tree native to China and Vietnam.
The tree has dry fruits that look like stars, ranging from red to orange, which people may confuse with normal anise, but there’s no relation.
It is necessary to know that Star Anise has two types; Chinese and Japanese.
The Chinese type is safe to use, while the Japanese type is poisonous and can only be distinguished by chemical analysis.
What are the therapeutic characteristics?
It was used by Chinese doctors thousands of years ago as part of traditional medicine and is recently used now in modern medicine.
Its popularity is due to its antioxidant properties and resistance to bacteria, viruses, and fungi.
It’s rich in vital nutrients since every 100 gm of star anise contain the following:
- Carbohydrates: 50.02 g.
- Fat: 15.9 g.
- Protein: 17.6 g.
- Potassium: 1441 mg.
- Iron: 37 mg.
- Calcium: 646 mg.
- Vitamin C: 21 micrograms.
- Dietary fiber: 14.6 g.
Star anise is low in calories, with only 23 calories per tablespoon and 337 calories per 100 grams.
Does star anise affect blood pressure?
Studies have shown that it has a positive effect on heart health and blood pressure because it is rich in powerful antioxidants and can prevent the accumulation of harmful free radicals.
Therefore, adding it to a balanced diet keeps the heart healthy and prevents certain diseases, such as stroke.
The skin benefits of star anise
Star anise purifies the skin of toxins and free radicals, which help reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fight signs of aging.
It contains materials with anti-inflammatory properties that reduce skin irritation and infections.
It also helps prevent the emergence of acne for its antibacterial effect on the skin.
It’s rich in antioxidants that give the skin essential hydration and make it more supple and uniform.
It also makes the skin healthier because it contains active elements with an antibacterial and antimicrobial effect that prevents harmful bacteria and fungi from growing on the skin surface.
You can utilize its skin benefits by applying this mask.
Star anise mask for skin tightening and wrinkle reduction
It is necessary to do an allergy test on the skin before applying this mask, and you can prepare it as follows:
Use three seeds of Star anise with a glass of water.
Preparation and usage
Boil the Star anise in water for five minutes and let it cool down, then wipe the face with this water in the evening and leave it on all night.
Star anise and diabetes
There is no doubt that diabetes is one of the common chronic diseases that, if uncontrolled, may lead to severe complications.
Some studies have demonstrated its effectiveness in controlling blood sugar by containing a powerful compound called anethole.
Anethole regulates some of the essential enzymes involved in carbohydrate metabolism.
Therefore, adding a portion or two to a balanced diet with an active lifestyle will maintain a normal blood sugar level.
Star anise and flu
This plant contains Shikimic acid, found in flu therapy drugs.
Some studies discovered the potential of this acid to increase the production of immune cells to fight influenza.
Nutritional benefits of star anise
It contains valuable compounds that have a potent and effective impact on health, including:
- Linalool: This substance has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties.
- Vitamin C: In addition to being a potent antioxidant, it also improves immune system function and helps prevent diseases.
- Shikimic acid: Besides being a common ingredient in many influenza drugs, it also has strong antibacterial properties.
- Anethole: This aromatic compound can help fight cancer, diabetes, and infections, as well as maintain brain health.
The benefits of star anise for pregnant and lactating women
A pregnant woman should stay away from eating anise because it can cause premature labor.
However, this aromatic oil can benefit lactating women; It increases the flow of breast milk.
The benefits of star anise for gastroesophageal diseases
It can be used to treat indigestion, colics, intestinal parasites, as well as relieve flatulence.
How to make the tea
Add half a small tablespoon of grated seeds or three stars in good condition to a glass of boiling water.
Leave covered for five minutes, then sieve it and drink it warm.
You have to consult a doctor before taking it, especially for those with chronic diseases or pregnant and lactating women.
Star anise for children and infants
It would be better to avoid giving it to children or infants because if the dose is too high or contaminated with the Japanese type; It’ll lead to poisoning and dangerous neurological symptoms.
Before dealing with this type of spice, you should pay attention to the following;
- Avoid taking the Japanese star anise; Because it contains neurotoxins that can lead to dangerous symptoms, such as hallucinations or nausea.
- Increased dose or contamination with the Japanese type in children causes poisoning and adversely affects the nervous system. It is, therefore, advised not to give it to children and infants.
- Check the source well before buying.
- Perform allergy testing before application to the skin.
Put some preparation on the inside of your wrist or elbow, and wait 24 hours to see if you develop an allergic reaction.
If skin irritation or itching develops, then the individual has an allergy to the star anise formula.
In conclusion, we enjoy the benefits and bounties of nature all around us and, we should take advantage of it as much as possible, especially star anise.