Fenugreek seeds yield a soothing mucilage that goes into poultices and ointments. Taken internally as a tea, they are also effective for relieving gas pains. In the Middle East fenugreek is used to treat diabetes; some experimental data suggest that extracts of the seeds do lower blood sugar levels. The seeds are an ingredient of Middle Eastern spice mixtures. The are often ground for use as animal fodder and are also the source of a yellow dye.