茴香(Fennel,Foeniculum vulgare)

伞形科(Umbelliferae/Apiaceae)茴香属(Foeniculum)

学名:Foeniculum vulgare

中文名:茴香、甜茴香、苦茴香

变种(或亚种?)的茴香籽有不同味道,F.vulgare var.dulce是甜茴香,亚种piperitum是苦茴香,F.vulgare var.vulgare在文献纪载中有甜也有苦#1,3。

【生理活性】

精油主要萃取于种子,甜茴香籽精油主成分有反式茴香脑(trans-anethole,81.63%-87.85%)#4、葑酮(fe nchone)、草嵩脑(estragole)和α-水芹烯(α-phellandrene)。精油的雌激素特性源于反式茴香脑,或是相关聚合物双茴香脑(dianethole)和光茴香脑(photoanethole)#3。茴香的主成分之一,草嵩脑,分子结构和可能致癌物甲基丁香酚(methyl eugenol)相似,多项体外和动物实验证明有致癌性,欧盟因此原因将草嵩脑添加于非酒精饮料的浓度限制在10 mg/kg#5。除了以上成分,茴香还包含多种酚酸、黄酮类和二苯乙烯类(stilbene)等酚类物质,在生理活性的表现上,这些成分预期都能有程度不等的贡献。

民俗疗法

茴香具有解胀气特性,复方甘草(liquorice)粉常会另外添加茴香,以缓和甘草助泻产生可能的副作用。茴香水混合小苏打和糖浆能治疗婴幼儿不明的哭或肠胃问题,国外已有类似产品贩售。茴香也应用在催乳上,这可能和它的雌激素特性有关。茴香籽茶也能治疗胀气,印度人相信生吃茴香籽对视力有帮助。茴香籽萃取物在动物实验显示,有治疗青光眼、高血压和作为利尿剂的潜在功效。#3

抗氧化

茴香精油的抗氧化力表现类似维他命E和2,6-二丁基羟基甲苯(butylated hydroxytoluene(BHT))等常见抗氧化物#6。实验证明,茴香籽丁醇和水萃取物能减少油脂的过氧化并消灭自由基,不过整体抗氧化力比槲皮素(黄酮类物质)弱,约仅10%#7。一篇来自埃及的研究表示,当地3种变种有机茴香籽的精油成分明显有差异,经检测其中2种所表现出的抗氧化力和2,6-二丁基羟基甲苯相似,大幅优于另1种#8。

抗菌

茴香精油能抑制大肠杆菌、金黄色葡萄球菌、李斯特菌、巨杆菌(Bacillus megaterium)和多重抗药性鲍氏不动杆菌(Acinetobacter baumannii)#3,9-11。茴香的酒精和水萃取物可抑制曲状杆菌(Campylobacter jejuni)和幽门螺旋杆菌(Helicobacter pylori)#12。

精油或是萃取物也可抗真菌,包括白色念珠菌#13-14、核盘菌(Sclerotinia sclerotiorum)#15、黑霉菌(Aspergillum niger)、黄麴霉菌(Aspergillum flavus)、禾谷镰孢菌(Fusarium graminearum)和串珠镰孢菌(Fusarium moniliforme)#16。

抗血栓

茴香精油有抗凝血、使血块崩解(destabilize)的能力。豚鼠血液试验证明,精油能抑制因化学物质、酵素和胶原蛋白诱发的血液凝集。在大鼠动脉观察到茴香精油和茴香脑有减缓血管舒张功效。小鼠每日口服茴香精油或茴香脑(30 mg/kg)持续5天,可保护小鼠因静脉注射胶原蛋白-肾上腺素引起的血栓性瘫痪,保护效果分别达70%和83%。#17

抗发炎

诱发发炎前1小时先给予小鼠或大鼠口服200 mg/kg的茴香籽甲醇萃取物,经发炎后3小时,可减少发炎反应60-75%。血液中麸胺酸苯醋酸转氨基酶(aspartate aminotransferase,AST)的活性升高和细胞损伤发炎有正相关性,作者注射甲醛到大鼠体内诱发关节炎,实验显示持续7日口服200 mg/kg茴香籽甲醇萃取物的大鼠,它们的麸胺酸苯醋酸转氨基酶活性和对照组相比,显著较低。#18

抗过敏、止痛

在化学药物引起的延迟性第IV型过敏反应研究#18,持续7日口服200 mg/kg茴香籽甲醇萃取物的小鼠能有效抑制耳部肿胀发生,抑制率可到94%。经口服200 mg/kg茴香籽甲醇萃取物的小鼠在疼痛耐受性试验中,耐受时间能从19.5秒延长至34.3秒。

缓解经痛

30位年龄在15-24岁有经痛困扰的年轻女性,每人经历3轮实验,第一轮无给药,第二轮口服止痛药甲芬那酸(mefenamic acid)(250 mg,每6小时1次),第三轮口服2%茴香籽萃取物(25滴,每4小时1次),结果参与女性自评认为口服甲芬那酸和茴香期间,都明显比无给药时更能减少经痛,其中甲芬那酸在月经第2和3天表现明显优于茴香,其它天则无显著差异#19。

护肝

茴香籽精油在大鼠实验显示有护肝功效#20,每周3次持续7周腹腔注射0.3 ml/kg精油的大鼠除了显著减少血液中与肝指数相关的酵素活性,从病理切片也观察到茴香籽精油能阻止发展成慢性肝炎。

降血糖、抗糖尿病

口服30 mg/kg bw茴香精油的糖尿病大鼠,经21天实验后,可有效降低血糖从162.5±3.19 mg/dl到81.97±1.97 mg/dl,且能提升抗氧化酵素活性,反转原本因氧化压力造成的肾和胰脏损伤,恢复健康#21。

减少婴幼儿不明哭泣

每日4次饭前给予婴幼儿茴香油,每日剂量不超过12 mg/kg,结果在125位2-12周岁婴儿参与的试验显示,实验组有65%能有效改善症状,对照组仅23.7%#22-23。

抗压

短期压力导致肾上腺素增加,肾上腺素经代谢会产生香草扁桃酸(vanillylmandelic acid)代谢物。长期压力则会分泌可体松(cortisol),补充维他命C能抑制可体松达到减压效果#24。根据研究,施予压力前就口服不同剂量茴香籽水萃取物的大鼠,相较于对照组,在施压后24小时其尿液中香草扁桃酸浓度较低、维他命C浓度更高,显著表现抗压反应,且口服剂量越高,抗压效果越明显#25。

可能风险

大鼠实验显示,草嵩脑浓度和产生突变性代谢物的机率成正比#26。虽然多项体外和动物实验指出#27-31草嵩脑具有致癌性,然而致癌性可能因组织、性别和物种而有差异,就近期研究结果,没有直接证据证明草嵩脑会导致人类罹癌#3,不过欧盟依然顾虑其毒性而管制在食品的添加量#32。

虽然没有任何研究探讨,但着有Clinical Aromatherapy的作者Jane Buckle会建议癫痫患者避开迷迭香、茴香、牛膝草松樟酮(Hyssopus officinalis CT pinocamphone)和胡椒薄荷精油。怀孕和癌症患者也不适合使用茴香精油,因雌激素会促进有些肿瘤的生长。#22

【芳疗功效】

嗅闻茴香和姜混合精油能改善晕船(车)的不适感,减少恶心、呕吐。每日3次涂擦3%茴香精油在手腕处(视情况可增加次数)持续2周,实验发现能降低食欲,有助减重,实验组最终平均减3.51磅,对照组平均2.81磅。#22

【料理应用】

甜茴香籽带有甜味,味道似八角(Illicium verum)或大茴香(Pimpinella anisum),时常用在鱼肉、肉类、冰淇淋、酒精饮料、香草茶、烘焙或综合香料#33。茴香的茎脆口,它的块根可炖、焖、炒或烤料理,也可以生吃。地中海料理喜欢使用球茎和嫩叶,可生吃或烹调应用在沙拉、附餐、意大利面或蔬食料理。印度次大陆和中东地区有添加茴香籽调味的料理文化,茴香也是印度少数民族的重要香料。#3

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作者:cofactor412