Fennel Essential Oil: For A Happier Tummy And A Slimmer You

Posted: May 7, 2013 by Cristina Proano-Carrion

Fennel flower

Despite its incredible benefits, Fennel essential oil isn’t one of the “mainstream” essential oils because very few people are familiar with its usage. However, when you begin to explore Fennel’s vast therapeutic properties, you will be inclined to make this wonderful oil an important part of your self-care routine. As for me, I have experienced the benefits of Fennel essential oil first hand, and I frequently recommend it to my family, friends and clients. Right from the Detoxing Blend to the Woman’s Help Oil, Fennel is a key ingredient in many of my products. Here’s why.

What is Fennel?

Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) is a biennial or perennial herb that grows up to 2 meters high, and has fine, feathery leaves and umbels of golden yellow flowers.  Although the plant is indigenous to Mediterranean countries such as Italy, Greece and France, it is now widely cultivated across the world. Fennel’s name comes from the Latin word ‘foenum’, meaning “hay”.  There are 2 subspecies of fennel – Foeniculum vulgare var. dulce, known as sweet fennel and Foeniculum vulgare var. amara, known as bitter fennel. Sweet fennel is the preferred oil for use in aromatherapy, due to its more gentle nature. Fennel has found extensive mention in the culinary and medical history of Ancient Egypt, Greece, Rome and India. In fact, the Greeks were among the first to recognize its gentle diuretic properties and used it as a slimming aid. They named the herb “Marathron”, which comes from the word ‘maraino’, meaning “to grow thin”. Even Roman soldiers took advantage of Fennel’s appetite suppressing properties during long periods of travel and religious fasts. Fennel was also believed to enhance strength and longevity, which is why athletes often used the seeds as a supplement while training for Olympic games. In India, even today, a concoction of Fennel oil and Dill oil is popularly used to relive colic in infants.

Fennel Essential Oil – Uses in Aromatherapy

Fennel essential oil has a characteristic sweet, earthy aroma, much like aniseed. Although its most popular use is that of a digestive agent, Fennel also possesses antiseptic, antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties. It is also a potent antispasmodic and analgesic, which makes it particularly helpful in treating women-related problems. Fennel’s aperitif and diuretic properties, on the other hand, have made it immensely popular among weight-watchers and dieters.

Fennel Essential Oil For Digestive Problems

Fennel has a carminative nature, which means that it helps prevent and relieve flatulence.  As an effective antispasmodic, it acts upon the smooth muscles of the stomach and intestines, thus alleviating gastric pain and discomfort associated with indigestion, abdominal bloating, nausea, belching, and flatulence.

Fennel Essential Oil For Detoxification

As a natural diuretic and lymphatic decongestant, Fennel assists the body in eliminating toxins, stagnant fluids and fats.  A massage with fennel oil boosts blood circulation and draws excessive water from the tissues, which helps in instant inch-loss and minimizes cellulite. Not surprisingly, Fennel has been used as a traditional slimming aid in many cultures. I have used Fennel as an ingredient in my Detoxing Body Oil and it has delivered fabulous results!

Fennel Essential Oil For Reproductive Health

Fennel is indeed a “woman’s oil” as it can help regulate the menstrual cycle, particularly when periods are scanty and painful.  It is also recommended during menopause to reduce symptoms caused by fluctuating hormonal levels. Fennel essential oil contains high amounts of anethole, which is believed to have estrogen-like properties. Due to its lactogenic and emmanagogic properties, Fennel is given to new mothers in India to stimulate lactation and help with the contraction of uterus after delivery. Fennel is an important ingredient in Aromandina’s Woman’s Help Body Oil – one of our most popular products.

Fennel Essential Oil for Skin and Oral Care

Fennel is an elixir for aging skin as its tautening and tonic effects can help treat wrinkles, weakness of the connective tissue and cellulite. It is also used in many oral and dental care products for its antiseptic properties and can be used on its own as a breath freshener. Quick Tip: You can make your very own day-and-night anti-wrinkle moisturizer by combining: 5 drops of of fennel 5 drops of rose 5 drops of lavender in a 1 oz bottle of jojoba oil. You will love the results!

Fennel Essential Oil For Emotional Issues

Obesity and weight gain are often associated with low self-esteem, poor self image and self rejection. These factors lead to “substitutes” like emotional eating, which only compounds the problem. Fennel enhances peoples’ ability to embrace and accept themselves, and acknowledge the root cause of weight issues, thus contributing towards better self-image and confidence. Fennel is also known to encourage positive qualities like perseverance and motivation, which are necessary to overcome weight issues. Fennel is also very beneficial for people who tend to bottle up their feelings, which often manifest as physical problems such as nervous spasm or indigestion. Fennel helps open up channels of communication and gives people courage to express themselves without fear or inhibition. Have you ever used Fennel essential oil? Tell us how it benefitted you.
Related aromatherapy articles:
 Essential oils for fertility. I’d like to share my personal story
How to lose weight with essential oils 
© 2013, Cristina Proano-Carrion, Aromandina LLC
This information is based on traditional use of aromatherapy and it does not intend to diagnose or treat any condition. This information should not be used as a substitute for medical counseling with a health care professional. No part of this article may be reproduced in whole or in part without the explicit written permission of Aromandina.
  • Hi there, im making my own fennel essenstial oil, and wondered if i can use all of the clippings?or should i just use the seeds?
    Many Thanks and i love your blog x

  • Hi Alexandra,
    The essential oil comes from the seeds, I wonder if by using the clippings and not the seeds you’ll obtain less essential oil with different therapeutic properties

  • dredmari

    Hi. What is the application mode for digestive problems?

  • Juni

    I bought some essential fennel oil. Your site tells me all the good things it does for you but I have NO IDEA what to do with the stuff. Pour it on my head? Drink it? Put it in my bath?

  • You are right Juni. Fennel essential oil needs to be diluted in a carrier oil before you apply it to your body. Dilute 3 drops of Fennel oil in 1 tbs of a cold press vegetable oil. Our carrier oil is made of fractionated coconut oil, golden jojoba and tamanu. Once diluted apply it to the area of need. For instance, for digestion, massage the diluted oil on your abdomen.
    Fennel can be irritating in the bath, it’s better if it’s applied topically as mentioned above.
    Hope this helps.

  • Jez

    Thank you for the fantastic article on Fennel essential oil. I bought a bottle a few months back and now consider this oil as a valuable addition to my collection, on par with the more well known oils such as Lavender, for it’s practicality and effectiveness. I was curious to know more about it’s benefits in skin care, so thank you for the information.


I Am a Consumer
I Am a Spa/Wellness Professional


I Am a Consumer
I Am a Spa/Wellness Professional


I Am a Consumer
I Am a Spa/Wellness Professional


I Am a Consumer
I Am a Spa/Wellness Professional