Fenugreek, a well-known herb belonging to the Fabaceae family, is used in many medicinal, nutritional and culinary functions. It thrives in South Asian countries where people like its aromatic taste when mixed to create curry pastes. India is the largest producer of fenugreek, specifically in the state of Rajasthan, which accounts for about 80% of the India’s total production. It thrives in other countries, such as Nepal, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Argentina, Spain, Morocco, Egypt and China. Today, it has made its way into major western markets, through health supplement producers such as NOW Fenugreek. It is popularized as an herbal supplement for general use and specifically for bodybuilding.
It seems as though the tiny seeds of this little known Mediterranean herb have a ton of beneficial uses. In Indian Ayurvedic medicine, the herb helps in treating kidney problems and a ton of body aches. People in India regularly take a few seeds in the morning, even earlier than their morning coffee or toothbrush, to avoid experiencing several kinds of body pains throughout the day. In the evening, it has also become a custom for some Indians to take a few more seeds with warm water to improve digestion. The cube-like yellow fenugreek seed is called methi in India and the name is commonly used in the west as well.
In China, on the other hand, it is one of the most commonly used herbs to detoxify the kidney and as relief for body pains, fever and colds.
Other supposed medicinal benefits of the magical fenugreek is that it can manage or lower cholesterol and blood sugar levels, improve digestion and metabolism, cleanse the intestines, increase libido, relieve menstrual and testicular pains, and cure skin diseases, asthma, bronchitis, sore throat and fever. As most herbs and herbal supplements, most of the fenugreek’s uses and therapeutic claims have no strong scientific bases, but are more traditional than modern. Yet, western doctors and breastfeeding consultants agree that fenugreek is an effective galactagogue or breast milk-producing agent.
With proper dosage and with water or juice, lactating mothers have said to have experienced an increase of milk production by as much as 900 percent. Fenugreek is sold as capsules for this purpose.
NOW Fenugreek primarily promotes the herb as a supplement to bodybuilding. Fenugreek has been found to boost testosterone levels, which makes it helpful in building up muscles. Users of NOW refer to the herb as “fen”. They like this supplement because it is cheaper and more affordable than other bodybuilding supplements. Well, there are still no scientific studies for now to support claims that fen helps build muscles, but several users have said they like its effects.
NOW Fenugreek capsules and teas are available online and distributed through several health centers around the United States. A bottle containing 100 500-mg capsules only costs $7.49 but can go down to only $3.99 on special online rates. A bodybuilding supplement this cheap makes it easy to convince people to try it.