The oval-shaped, aromatic seeds of Pimpinella anusum are one of the world’s oldest known spices. The ancient Romans were the first to really discover and use the pungent and spicy aniseed to flavor their cakes, which they ate after heavy meals to settle their stomachs. Anise, as it is also called, is the flavor in the popular Greek drink “ouzo”. Anise seed grows wild throughout the Middle East, but it can also be cultivated in any moderately warm climate. It grows about 1 1/2 feet (45 cm) tall, with broad leaves, small cream-colored flowers, and light-brown hairy seeds. It was first cultivated by the ancient Egyptians and then spread throughout the Arab, Roman and Greek worlds. It has been grown commercially for a very long time but is now being slowly replaced by Illicium verum – star anise because it is cheaper to grow.

Anise Seed and Leaf

The fresh leaves can be used to flavor curries and spice meat dishes, while the seeds can be chewed to sweeten the breath afterward. The taste is similar to fennel – sweet and spicy, although the leaves have a more delicate flavor. It is used to flavor candy which young children love. And it is also used to flavor various liqueurs such as ouzo, pastis, and arak.

Aniseed has warming and stimulating properties and it is these properties that make it useful for treating circulation problems and digestive disorders. It is also soothing for the lungs as an expectorant and is used to both flavor and activate cough medicines. More mysteriously, it is said to avert the evil eye. Aniseed produces a special kind of oil used in the production of toothpaste, and aniseed tea is used for settling the digestion and improving overall digestion. Before talking about aniseed essential oil, there is a need to explain what essential oils are all about.


Essential oils are chemical compounds with aromatic properties found in the seeds, roots, stems, bark, flowers, and other parts of plants. They are the highly concentrated, volatile and aromatic essences produced by plants. These contain the true essence of the plant and these are highly concentrated and could be used for long once purchased. For centuries, there are many stories of the healing properties of these precious oils. Aniseed oil is not an exception. The vast majority of oils from plants are steam distilled at a certain temperature and a specific pressure. The most therapeutic oils with optimum benefits are taken after the first distillation.

Ways of Using Essential Oils

anise seed essential oil

Essential oils can be used aromatically (with a diffuser or by simply smelling the oil) and topically (on the skin). Aromatic use is very safe. Always make sure the diffuser you purchase is compatible with the oils you purchase. Cleaning the diffuser with each type of oil you use might also be in order, but many companies have improved on the diffusers used and cleaning isn’t necessary every time you switch oils. Aromatic use is a great way to freshen hallways, bathrooms, and other areas.

Topical use is also very common and safe. The most effective way to use the essential oils is by external application or inhalation. These can be used as body massage, compresses, cosmetic lotions, baths, hair rinses, perfumes, and room sprays also. Even, these are often used by diluting them with carrier oils and then applying this blend to the skin for absorption. The essential oils are extracted from the botanical material using a variety of extraction methods to suit the material extracted from and are highly odoriferous liquids. These can be used in a variety of ways that include aromatherapy massage, making medicines etc.

The only controversial topic of topical use is a neat application. Neat application occurs when the essential oils are put directly on the skin without dilution. Many companies state that most of their oils are safe for neat application. Use these recommendations with a grain of salt. Essential oils are very potent. A single drop of oil is equal to seventy-five cups of tea with those particular plants. Such potency can be an issue with skin irritation. The most important rule with essential oils is to dilute in carrier oils. Carrier oils are plant-based fatty oils used to dilute essential oils.


anise seed

Aniseed oil is extracted from the root of Anisum vulgare. The main component of Aniseed essential oil is “Anethole”, a chemical which gives anise its unique characteristics flavor. Other derivatives of antheole components are diantheole and photoantheole. Other components present in the aniseed oil are: flavonoids such as quercetin, methylchavicol, cumarins, and para methoxyphenylacetone. Aniseed contains about 2.5% oil and the oil is a flavoring agent for cough syrups. Aniseed essential oil is available in Pale Yellow to clear liquid colors. It is pure and natural essential oil which is very effective in treating stomach bloat. It is also used to flavor certain foods, drinks and confectionary items like chocolate, candy etc. This essential oil helps to improve your digestive system as well as cures cramps, sleeplessness and reptile bites. But pregnant women or women who may be nursing should not use it.


As a medicinal supplement, anise comes in varieties ranging from its seeds to powders that can be combined with other supplements or mixed with food or liquids. Since aniseed is a natural plant it is considered very healthy and the list cannot be exhausted.

Remedy to digestive disorder

Anise seed is used to help soothe upset stomachs and intestinal gas. Anise has naturally soothing properties and because it’s an expectorant. While anise works to clear the respiratory tracts of mucus and viruses when used for throat irritation, it clears the intestinal passages when used for stomach issues. During a stomachache, negative chemical compounds clash, forcing irritation and occasional swelling or bloating.

Anise seeds are commonly used because of their ability to reduce or prevent bloating and irritation in the stomach or intestinal tract. To use anise herb as a highly effective remedy for stomach disorder, it can be used as an infusion in combination with cumin, ginger, and pepper. To cure indigestion, boil aniseed in water overnight and strained the next morning. Add one teaspoon of honey for an effective result. In addition, the seeds have carminative properties, that is, they have the tendency to remove gas from the intestinal tract. As such, the seeds are also used in cough drops, medicinal teas, or cough syrups.


anise seed benefits - insomnia treatment

For treating sleeplessness or insomnia, it is advised that around 400 ml of water should be boiled to simmer by adding one teaspoon of aniseed, which is later strained out and taken with either honey or milk the last thing before bedtime.


Cataract is an eye defect. To cure cataract, it is advised to take around 7 grams of aniseed daily both morning and night hours. To have a good result, aniseed powder should be mixed with coriander seeds and sugar in the same quantity, then taken twice a day, preferably morning and night.

Relieves asthma and sore throat

Anise seed being enriched with expectorant properties is considered useful in treating asthma problems. Anise oil is an excellent expectorant. An expectorant helps to soothe problems related to the throat and clear mucous from the lungs, trachea, and bronchi. Expectorants work to drain mucus from the lungs by increasing the hydration and lubricating the relevant tract that is suffering from irritation or congestion. Since the oil is so easy to mix with liquids, it’s a great medicinal supplement to take if you’re looking to soothe a sore throat caused by a cold. It is advised that the tea made using this herb should be consumed daily to have beneficial results.

Kills head lice and scabies

Anise is commonly used as a medicinal supplement to treat common skin diseases. This is used for a range of people, from children to adults and is especially beneficial since the supplement is so easy to ingest. The oils found within the herb also work as an antioxidant. Antioxidants are an important part of the body as they work to detoxify bad cells, viruses, and germs from the oxygen in the body’s blood stream.

Anise has a large number of antioxidants and ingesting a significant quantity creates a healthier bloodstream which, in turn, creates more energy and a better, healthier lifestyle. The combination of aniseed oils and the skin’s natural oils work together to kill the dangerous virus cells. The viruses that form skin diseases like lice and scabies can’t survive the volatile properties found within aniseed oil. Thus, anise is commonly used as a medicinal supplement to treat common skin diseases. This is used for a range of people, from children to adults and is especially beneficial since the supplement is so easy to ingest. The essential oil extracted from aniseed should when applied over the roots of the hair and left overnight may help in killing all head lice, and scabies effectively.

Beautifying Benefits

anise seed benefits and uses

This is also a medical supplement that has various physical cosmetic benefits. The seeds and oil produced from the plant have a very specific composition. This oil composition is especially useful and marketable in lotions, creams, and moisturizers.

The oil’s original cosmetic use can be traced back to ancient civilizations, who used this “restorative property” to remove or diminish the physical impurities from their skin. The proteins, sterols, oils, and phelypropanoids found in the herb’s oil is what makes it so beneficial to the skin. This means that the composition creates a product that is used topically to prevent and decrease impurities. By using anise oil supplements to condition, smooth, and moisturize the skin, you can dramatically reduce the wrinkles, dark spots, lines, and age marks from your skin.

Increase sexual drive

Anise intake is useful in increasing sexual drive. While anise seed does not cure problems of sexual impotence, frequent use does prevent impotence and make its occurrence less likely. The stimulation of the sex drive is because of the estrogenic effect of the anethole found in anise seed. The anethole causes the seeds to be estrogenic, which causes increased interest in sex and prevents impotence. People who use aniseed to increase sex drive claim that it is very beneficial. There are many uses for this medicinal supplement and some of the physical benefits associated with it are incredibly useful. From stimulating the libido to soothing medical irritations and disorders, this medicinal herb helps to work wonders.