HealthFenugreek For Weight Loss? – Health Benefits & How To Use It...

Fenugreek For Weight Loss? – Health Benefits & How To Use It 2024

Did the ancient Romans utilize fenugreek to enhance the flavor of their wine? Did they also employ it as a means to maintain a figure? Fenugreek, scientifically referred to as Trigonella foenum graecum is widely recognized as one of the employed herbal remedies for weight loss, in modern times. However amidst the abundance of herbs and superfoods that claim to aid in weight loss does fenugreek truly live up to its reputed effectiveness?

Fenugreek seeds have a smell reminiscent of curry and maple syrup, thanks to a powerful compound called sotolon. Enough sotolon is also an indicator of well aged wine. However, there is no clinical evidence to support the effectiveness of fenugreek for weight loss. In addition, its use can potentially lead to serious side effects.

This brings up the issue of whether or not including fenugreek, in a weight loss program is advisable. Are the risks outweighing the benefits? The answer will become apparent as you dig deeper into this conversation.

Is Fenugreek Beneficial For Weight Loss?

There is evidence to suggest that fenugreek seeds may help you lose weight, especially if you have metabolic problems such as insulin resistance or diabetes. Experts believe that the weight loss effects of fenugreek may be due to bioactive compounds in the seeds. These bioactive compounds are substances that are known to affect the body. Some of the bioactive compounds found in fenugreek are

  • Diosgenin A naturally occurring steroid hormone
  • 4-hydroxyisoleucine An amino acid renowned for its anti diabetic properties
  • Dietary fiber Plant-derived food that cannot be completely broken down by human digestive enzymes
  • These and other compounds found in fenugreek work through mechanisms to support weight management, including suppressing appetite and preventing fat accumulation.

What Is Fenugreek And Where Does It Come From?

Fenugreek, a herb and spice known for its earthy scent with a subtle touch of maple syrup in its taste originates from the Mediterranean and West Asia. Its rich history is just as captivating as its flavor, which holds great value in Egyptian cuisine and finds extensive usage, in Indian and Middle Eastern culinary traditions.

This small leguminous plant has brown seeds that are like culinary treasures, adding depth and complexity to dishes as diverse as curries and flatbreads. Beyond its uses, fenugreek is also renowned for its potential health benefits, making it more than just a delicious addition to your spice collection, but also a source of wellness.

Where Can I Find Fenugreek Recipes?

Exploring the world of fenugreek is an adventure. You’ll discover an abundance of fenugreek recipes from sources. From treasured family cookbooks to a range of food blogs and recipe websites there is plenty of inspiration available. If you have a preference, for a cuisine you can explore cookbooks that specialize in Indian, Middle Eastern or Mediterranean flavors.

These cuisines feature fenugreek in mouth-watering dishes such as butter chicken lentil stews and homemade flatbreads. In addition, vibrant communities on media platforms provide a space for home cooks and chefs to share their imaginative creations infused with the flavours of fenugreek, inviting you to join them on this taste adventure.

How Can Fenugreek Assist In Achieving Weight Loss?

Fenugreek for weight loss image

Blood Sugar Level Regulation

Fenugreek has the potential to assist with weight loss by aiding in the regulation of blood sugar levels. When blood sugar fluctuates it often triggers snacking and can eventually result in weight gain. Therefore it is essential to maintain blood sugar levels when aiming to lose weight.

Research suggests that fenugreek may have properties that balance blood sugar levels, which may be particularly beneficial for people with type 2 diabetes. Although these studies have not directly measured the effect on weight loss specifically, it is thought that stabilising blood sugar levels indirectly supports weight management.

During a research individuals who consumed two chapatis per day for a period of 12 weeks noticed a notable decrease in their HbA1c levels. This measurement is an indicator of insulin resistance, abdominal fat and overall body weight. However it is worth mentioning that this study did not have a control group to make a comparison, with.

Protection Against Damage

A high-fat diet can lead to inflammation and oxidative damage. This can contribute to the development of metabolic syndrome. Make weight management more difficult. In addition, metabolic syndrome can cause leptin resistance, which reduces the effectiveness of the ‘satiety hormone’, making people more prone to overeating.

In a research mice were provided with a diet high in fat causing an increase, in inflammation elevated levels of leptin and subsequent weight gain. However an intriguing occurrence took place when these mice were administered fenugreek seed extract.

The mice given fenugreek had lower levels of inflammatory markers, leptin and body fat. This suggests that fenugreek may have anti-inflammatory properties and may even provide some protection against the metabolic damage caused by an unhealthy, high-fat diet.

Appetite Control

Fenugreek has been found to have an impact on temporary appetite regulation and feeling full. A recent study has brought attention to fenugreek as one of four herbs that could potentially be used as remedies to reduce the urge to eat. Although the exact reason, for fenugreeks ability to curb appetite is still uncertain it is believed that its fiber content might play a role.

In one study, adding eight grams of fenugreek fibre to breakfast led to an increase in satiety and a subsequent decrease in calorie intake at lunch. Interestingly, fenugreek also appears to have some appetite-suppressing effects without its fibre component, although the effect may be less pronounced.

A different research study found that women who are overweight and drank fenugreek tea (without fiber) before lunch felt less hungry. It didn’t result in them eating fewer calories compared to a placebo. While fenugreek seems to have potential, in reducing hunger it’s still unclear if these effects actually lead to weight loss.

Reduced Fat Intake

If you tend to eat a lot of fatty foods, fenugreek may be able to help. In one study, participants were given a daily supplement of fenugreek seeds for two weeks, with surprising results. Those who received a high dose of fenugreek seed supplementation showed a decrease in their consumption of fat.

Considering that fat is the macronutrient, with the calorie content it’s not surprising that individuals who incorporate fenugreek into their diet also tend to consume fewer calories overall. While the duration of the study did not allow for an evaluation of weight loss these findings indicate that regular use of fenugreek supplementation may contribute to maintaining a body weight.

However, the effects of fenugreek go beyond reducing fat intake; it also appears to affect fat metabolism. Other research studies suggest that fenugreek has the potential to inhibit the accumulation of cholesterol in the body, lowering blood lipid levels and increasing high-density lipoproteins (HDL), commonly known as ‘good’ cholesterol. It’s important to note, however, that these effects have not been directly linked to weight loss.

Does Fenugreek Contribute to Weight Gain?

It might be unexpected. There have been instances where fenugreek has been used to encourage weight gain even though it has the potential for weight loss as per research findings. In Moroccan Saharawi culture there is a practice known as “fattening” where women incorporate fenugreek into their diet and overindulge, for a minimum of 40 days. They hold the belief that fenugreek acts as an appetite enhancer although there is no evidence to back this claim up.

In addition, nursing mothers sometimes rely on fenugreek to increase breast milk production. Studies suggest that babies fed by mothers who have supplemented with fenugreek tend to gain weight quickly. However, it’s important to note that there is no evidence to suggest that consuming fenugreek in the form of seeds, tea or powder causes weight gain in adults.

How to Use Fenugreek for Weight Loss?

Are you trying to lose weight? Curious about the ways you can include fenugreek in your weight loss journey? Well fenugreek isn’t a delightful herb or spice for your favorite dishes. It can also be used as a supplement to promote your well being.

In the field of medicine many people turn to fenugreek tea or infused water commonly known as ‘methi’ water to aid in weight loss. To prepare this mixture simply soak one or two tablespoons of fenugreek seeds, in water overnight.

What Is The Appropriate Dosage Of Fenugreek For Weight Loss?

Well, when it comes to the dosage of fenugreek for weight loss, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer. The recommended amount may vary depending on the supplement and the health goals you have in mind. For fenugreek seed, a daily dose is typically between one and five grams. Keep in mind that one tablespoon of these seeds weighs about 11 grams.

Please keep in mind that some research studies on diabetes management have utilized fenugreek powder doses of up to 100 grams per day. However it’s important to exercise caution and consult with your doctor before embarking on any program involving fenugreek supplements or other herbal products for weight loss. It’s always a decision to seek professional medical advice prior, to starting any new regimen.

Who Is Fenugreek Best For For Weight Loss?

While fenugreek is not a panacea, it can be a helpful companion for people embarking on a weight loss journey. Its high soluble fibre content can contribute to a feeling of fullness, which may help to control eating. Fenugreek also has the ability to regulate blood sugar levels, which can reduce cravings for sugary snacks. It is valuable when incorporated into a well-rounded diet and exercise programme.

However it’s crucial to keep in mind that achieving weight loss isn’t solely dependent on fenugreek. It requires an approach. Consulting with a healthcare professional or nutritionist can offer guidance on leveraging the benefits of fenugreek within an overall strategy, for managing weight effectively.

Other Health Benefits of Fenugreek

Fenugreek offers more than just weight loss benefits; it also provides several other health benefits, such as

Relieving Heartburn

Supplements containing fenugreek fibre have shown potential in relieving heartburn, similar to over-the-counter antacids. In one study, participants took the fenugreek supplement 30 minutes before each meal.

Reducing Cholesterol Levels

Studies suggest that fenugreek may be effective in lowering cholesterol levels, particularly low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, commonly known as ‘bad’ cholesterol.

Managing Diabetes

Studies indicate that fenugreek could potentially enhance the bodys response to insulin resulting in a decrease in both blood glucose and HbA1c levels. Furthermore research on animals with type 1 diabetes has shown that fenugreek has the ability to lower blood glucose levels implying its capacity to regulate glucose, from insulin.

Breast Milk Production

Studies suggest that fenugreek has the potential to increase breast milk production, offering support to women who may be experiencing difficulties with low milk supply.

Anti Inflammatory Properties

Fenugreek seeds contain natural plant polyphenols that have anti-inflammatory properties. Scientific research has shown that including fenugreek supplements in the diet can effectively reduce inflammation levels in people who consume a high-fat diet.

A Valuable Source of Essential Micronutrients

Fenugreek seeds contain micronutrients like iron and magnesium. One tablespoon of fenugreek seeds can fulfill 20% of the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for iron and 5% of the RDA, for magnesium.

Promotes Hair Growth

Recent evidence suggests that fenugreek may have an effect on stimulating hair growth, possibly due to its iron content and anti-inflammatory properties.

Possible Side Effects

While fenugreek may offer potential for weight loss and various health benefits it is crucial to approach it with care. Research indicates that consuming excessive amounts of fenugreek could potentially result in negative impacts, on health.

Liver Toxicity

There is one documented case of a woman who experienced liver damage after taking fenugreek supplements.

Progression of Hormone Cancers

Fenugreek has the ability to mimic oestrogen, so it is advisable to avoid high-dose supplementation if you have hormone-sensitive cancers such as certain types of breast cancer.

Digestive Symptoms

Taking high doses of fenugreek may cause digestive upset, such as nausea or diarrhoea.

Low Blood Sugar

Fenugreek seems to have the ability to reduce blood sugar levels by stimulating the production of insulin. Although this can be advantageous a study indicated that consuming doses of fenugreek (20 milligrams per kilogram of body weight) might potentially result in abnormally low blood sugar levels thereby increasing the risk of hypoglycemia particularly for individuals, with diabetes.

Fertility Issues

When it comes to dealing with fertility problems, many people choose fenugreek as a supplement option. Some older studies have suggested that fenugreek may have the potential to increase libido.

However, it’s important to note that fenugreek could potentially have an effect on sperm. Animal studies suggest that high doses of fenugreek may be associated with infertility in both men and women, mainly due to stress and DNA damage.

Adverse Effects During Pregnancy

There have been some concerns regarding birth defects, in animal studies when using doses of fenugreek. Therefore it is advised to avoid taking high dose fenugreek supplements during pregnancy. However the amount of fenugreek typically found in food is generally considered safe.

Allergic Cross-reaction

If you have asthma or are allergic to peanuts or chickpeas, it’s advisable to be cautious and avoid taking fenugreek supplements due to the risk of cross-reaction.

What Can I Do In General To Lose Weight In A Healthy Way?

To lose weight in a healthy way, it’s important to find a balance that suits you. Start by making choices about what you eat. Choose fruits, vegetables, lean proteins and whole grains, and reduce your intake of sugary snacks and processed foods. Also incorporate physical activity into your routine.

Engaging in physical activities such as taking a refreshing stroll dancing or doing strength training can be beneficial. It’s important to find activities that bring you joy. Additionally make sure to prioritize rest and effective stress management since these aspects can have an impact on your weight. Consulting with a healthcare expert is advisable to develop a plan and establish achievable objectives. Keep in mind that this is a process. It’s essential to be patient and kind to yourself, throughout the journey!

Frequently Asked Questions

Is fenugreek save for everyone for weight loss?

While fenugreek is generally considered safe for individuals, it’s important to consult a healthcare professional, especially if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, have allergies or are taking any medications. They will be able to advise you if fenugreek is suitable for your particular circumstances.

How long does it take to see results from using fenugreek for weight management?

The length of time it takes to see results can differ from one individual to another. For some people changes, in appetite and energy levels may become noticeable within a weeks while others may require several months of consistent use before observing substantial weight loss.

Are there any side effects of using fenugreek for weight loss?

When taken in moderate amounts as a spice or supplement, fenugreek is generally safe. However, excessive use may cause problems such as diarrhoea or bloating. If you’re pregnant, have allergies or are taking any medication, it’s advisable to consult a healthcare professional before adding fenugreek to your routine.

How can I include fenugreek in my weight loss diet?

You have the option of incorporating fenugreek seeds or leaves into your meals. For added nutrition you can sprinkle some fenugreek seeds on salads. Blend them into smoothies. Enhance the flavor of your soups and curries by adding the aromatic fenugreek leaves. Additionally you can find fenugreek supplements if you prefer.

What is the recommended daily dosage of fenugreeks, for weight loss?

It’s important to note that there is no recommended dosage for fenugreek, but based on various studies it is generally suggested to take 500 – 1000 mg of fenugreek extract or 2 – 5 grams of fenugreek seeds each day if you are looking to potentially benefit from weight loss. However, it’s always a good idea to consult a health professional before adding any new supplements to your routine.


The key point to remember is that although there is some indication of the advantages of fenugreek in aiding weight loss it is crucial to emphasize that further comprehensive clinical studies are necessary before firmly endorsing fenugreek as a trustworthy and efficient supplement, for weight loss.

It’s also important to be cautious when considering fenugreek supplementation, as there is some evidence that high doses of fenugreek may have health effects in some people. To prioritise safety and ensure the appropriateness of any weight loss supplement, it is strongly recommended that you consult your healthcare professional.


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Doctor of Medicine at David Geffen School of Medicine

Dr. Harvey is a Doctor of Medicine and an experienced physician in obesity, healthy weight loss, adolescent medicine, and child and adolescent psychiatry with practices in California and other locations. She specializes in treating adolescent mental health and addiction issues, developing individualized treatment plans that incorporate behavioral therapy and nutritional supplements, and promoting holistic recovery.

An expert in substance and behavioral addictions and a dedicated public health advocate, Dr. Harvey educates about the risks of obesity and motivates healthier lifestyles through workshops, speaking engagements and social media.

Health Coach

Emily Johnson is an experienced digital health journalist and content creator who has covered a wide range of topics, including public health, medical cannabis, nutrition, and biomedical science for over a decade. Her mission is to empower and educate people by bringing health matters to life with engaging, evidence-based writing. Emily has experience in the healthcare industry as a researcher, clinical data manager, and clinical trial monitor.


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