Cardamom originated from Asia and has been cultivated since before 20th century in India. Cardamom is a popular spice in Asia, not only around India like Bhutan and Nepal but also the other parts of Asia generally like Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, China, Japan and Korea. The world considered cardamom is one of the expensive spices after saffron and vanilla but still it earns the title of Queen of Spice due to its pleasant aroma and flavor. That’s why cardamom has significant role in flavoring the India’s cuisine as well as exotic cuisines from Asia continental.
What is Cardamom?
The word cardamom originated from Greek word kardamomon which literal meaning is closely related to spice plant of India but then the word cardamom is actually derived from the Latin word cardamomum which is the literal translation from the Greek version kardamomon. Cardamom is in the form of aromatic seeds which comes from the same family as ginger plant and widely used as spice in many Asian cusine recipes. However, just like ginger, cardamom is not only used to spice up the food but also the beverages and now world also know how beneficial cardamom for human health is. Cardamom has been becoming part of Indian ancient heritage of herbs used for medication purpose and it also have been mentioned several time in Ayurvedic medicine for several health treatments. As we have already known, Ayurveda is a system of traditional or alternative medicine from India which now have been integrated with the modern medical system.
Types of Cardamom
When it comes to name, cardamom is the term used widely in the world but it has its own local name like choti elaichi in Hindi, enasal in Sinhala language, kapulaga in Bahasa Indonesia, buah pelaga by Malaysian, Krawan in Thailand. However, when it comes to variety, there are only three types of cardamom well known worldwide.
- Green Cardamom from species Elettaria cardamomum.
- White Cardamom or also well known as Siam Cardamom is from species Amomum krervanh.
- Black Cardamom which is also well known as Nepal cardamom because it is cultivated in eastern Himalayas from species Amomum subulatum.
However, from those three types of cardamom, the green cardamom is the most popular one used as cooking spice for both food and drink as well as medicine.
Nutritional Value of Cardamom
|Serving Size: Cardamom
Per 100 gram
|Energy||311 Kcal – 15%|
|Carbohydrate||68 gram – 52%|
|Protein||11 gram – 19%|
|Total Fat||7 gram – 23%|
|Dietary Fiber||28 gram – 70%|
|Niacin||1 mg – 7%|
|Pyridoxine||0.2 mg – 18%|
|Riboflavin||0.2 mg – 14%|
|Thiamin||0.2 mg – 16%|
|Vitamin C||21 mg – 35%|
|Calcium||383 mg – 38%|
|Copper||0.4 mg – 42%|
|Iron||14 mg – 175%|
|Magnesium||229 mg – 57%|
|Manganese||28 mg – 1217%|
|Phosphorus||178 mg – 25%|
|Zinc||7 mg – 68%|
|Sodium||18 mg – 1%|
|Potassium||1119 mg – 24%|
As Queen of Spice, cardamom has quality more than just as cooking spice but also contains properties that have been proven scientifically to be beneficial for human health.
Cardamom for Stomach Health
Many Asians believe that stomach is the center of everything and cardamom has some properties that have been proven to be good for stomach health.
- Treat Constipation
Both Ayurveda and Chinese traditional are using cardamom to treat constipation. As you have known all foods that are rich of fiber always good for some stomach condition like constipation. Just spice up your food, you could treat this condition easily.
- Solution to Dysentery
Beside constipation, another stomach condition that is cured effectively by cardamom is dysentery.
- Ease Up Indigestion
Indigestion could happen anytime and even when you less expect it. The factors that could cause this condition is when you eat something that you shouldn’t eat. However, you don’t need to worry as long as you have cardamom in your kitchen cupboard, you could use it as home remedy.
- Natural Remedy to Acidity
Believe it or not but cardamom has been proven scientifically to be effective in treating acidity. This condition could be really uncomfortable and if you don’t deal with it soon enough, it could lead to more serious condition.
- Deal with Some Stomach Infections
Cardamom contains some antibacterial and antimicrobial agents that are supposed to be effective in treating stomach infections.
Cardamom for Oral Health
Brushing your teeth regularly is not the only solution to keep the health of your oral organ. Many cases stated that even if they have brushed their teeth but oral problems still could occur. Well, before you could find the source, cardamom could assist in reducing the symptoms because it contains antimicrobial compounds.
- Beat Bad Breath
Have you ever wondered why cardamom is widely used as ingredients of chewing gum? It is because cardamom has unique and aromatic smell that could beat your bad breath effectively and efficiently. What you need to do is just chewing the cardamom and your breath will be freshened naturally.
- Treat Mouth Infections
Not only in Ayurveda, traditional Chinese is also recommending cardamom as natural remedy to dental health. It is because cardamom is also able to act as antibiotic that will fight mouth infections caused by bacteria.
- Solution to Sore Throat
If you have sore throat, the best thing to deal with it finding solution that could calm the symptoms. What you need to do is just boiled water with cardamom and drink the water every morning. You must be surprised how this simple solution could be so effective in dealing with this uncomfortable condition.
Cardamom for Home Remedy Solution
It is important for you to learn about home remedy solution because sometimes you don’t have enough time or energy to see your doctor or go to drugstore to treat your flu, that’s why it is important to always store cardamom in your kitchen, so you could use it as home remedy solution whenever you need it.
- Relieve the Cold and Flu Symptoms
Cold and flu is not going to kill you but it could be really annoying. Though there are a lot of medicines you could get from drugstore to deal with the condition but cold and flu sometimes are draining your energy to even move your body. That’s why depending on the home remedy solution is the best solution you have and as long as you have cardamom in your kitchen cupboard, you’ll be fine.
- Treat Cough Effectively
Before cough, the early symptoms that usually appear is sore throat. The best way to deal with this condition is to get rid of the sore throat as fast as possible. Actually, just boiling a glass of water with some cardamom seeds could help you dealing with the sore throat and prevent cough.
- Remedy for Nausea
Do you know that tonic made from cardamom is a super powerful health tonic to deal with nausea? If it is the first time you have found out about it perhaps whenever you suffer from nausea just give cardamom some credit because the calming sensation of cardamom is an effective remedy for nausea.
- Solution to Vomiting
There are a lot of factors that could cause vomiting but there is only one effective solution you could count on to relieve this condition; it is by using cardamom. It is because cardamom contains some properties that provide calming effect to your stomach and reduce the bad sensation of vomiting.
- Relieve Hiccups
Hiccups is probably not a dangerous condition but it could be really annoying especially for children who have no idea how to get rid of their hiccups. Just mix cardamom with a glass of water and ask the children to drink it will get rid of hiccups traditionally and effectively.
- Act as Pathogens
It is due to its therapeutic properties found in cardamom, so it could act as pathogens. It is because cardamom has several compounds that are effective to fight infections caused by bacteria, viruses, fungus and even molds. So, from now on is better to always spice up your food with cardamom.
- Help Improving Appetite
There are some factors that could cause people losing their appetite especially during recovery after illness. In children, the factors could be vary and sometimes this condition could drive parents mad. Well, cardamom is the trick you need to improve appetite both for adult and children. Once you add it to the food, lets it does the trick magically.
Cardamom Beneficial for Chronic Diseases
The humble cardamom is also able to prevent the development or even cure the chronic diseases though until now, many studies and researches are still required.
- Colorectal Cancer
This type of cancer is one of the leading causes of death cases however some studies have found the significant connection that those who consume cardamom in daily basis is possible to reduce the risk of this type of cancer up to 48%. In other words, cardamom diet is also possible to fight other type of cancers.
- Control Hypertension
According to the researches have been conducted, cardamom contains special antioxidant enzymes that are good to control hypertension by lowering the heartbeat and controlling the rhythm. Furthermore, as rich of potassium and low in sodium surely cardamom is good for cardiovascular system.
- Reduce the High Cholesterol Level
Do you have problem with your cholesterol? Don’t only depend on the modern medication because sometimes alternative medication is the best and easiest solution you have. Consuming cardamom in daily basis by adding it to your daily diet to spice up the flavor is enough to reduce the high cholesterol level.
- Treat Asthma
Asthma is probably one of the health conditions that cannot be cured completely. However, cardamom could help you treating your asthma by reducing the symptoms. Some studies stated that there are some properties found in cardamom that could relax the tracheal tissues and constrict the wind pipes to relive the asthma.
- Natural Solution to Diuretic
Diuretic problem occurs when kidney is forced to work so hard and the toxins are not completely washed off. Cardamom has detoxifying agent that will help by optimizing the function of kidney and treat diuretic naturally from the root of the problem.
- Remedy to Bronchitis
Not only asthma, cardamom also has been proven to be effective used as remedy to bronchitis. It is because the calming effect of cardamom and some properties that effective to improve blood circulation will relieve the symptom of bronchitis. Though, you still need to meet your doctor to treat the condition completely.
- Solution to Impotency
As cardamom possesses some aphrodisica properties so it is effective to treat impotency and some related conditions like premature ejaculation and erectile dysfunction. Furthermore, its ability to promote blood circulation also has positive role in this case.
Cardamom as Anti-Inflammatory
What most people don’t know is inflammatory occurs in the body could lead to several serious conditions. In other words, it could be the root of your health condition this all time without you know it and cardamom could help you by acting as anti-inflammatory to ease up the symptoms.
- Good for Muscle
Muscle spasms is a condition mostly suffered by older people. Whenever they move, muscle will be contracted and that contraction could cause pain. Some studies have been conducted in order to find out whether cardamom could reduce the pain caused by muscle spasms and since it contains anti-inflammatory properties, the result came out as possible.
- Natural Treatment for Joint Pain
During senior age, there must be the time when even simple moving could be so painful. It is because the amount of calcium in the joint is decreasing since in old age, body will stop absorbing calcium, so the intake of calcium will be taken from the stock stored in the bones. Cardamom could act as anti-inflammatory to treat the joint pain.
Other Benefits of Cardamom
The list of cardamom’s benefits is probably longer than this and below is some other benefits of cardamom that you should know as well.
- Natural Kidney Detox
Kidney has essential role in making sure your body is free from toxins. However, there are some factors that disturb the optimal function of kidney so body is not detoxified completely. Cardamom contains detoxifying agents that will assist kidney in getting rid of all unnecessary properties completely for body system.
- Could Act as Anti-Depressant
The fact that cardamom could act as anti-depressant has been mentioned in Ayurvedic though more researches and studies are strongly required. However, cardamom is indeed having some natural properties that could fight depression by detoxify the body cells that could help in fighting depression.
- Promote Blood Circulation
There are a lot of benefits you could get when your blood circulation is in healthy pace. There are a lot of properties distributed by red blood cells like oxygen and nutrients. Cardamom has properties that could promote blood circulation so cells will be oxygenated and nutrients will be optimally distributed.
- Fight Anemia
Anemia occurs when body cells are not getting enough oxygen. The main factor that cause is when there is no red blood cells to distribute oxygen or the blood circulation is disturbed. Cardamom is so rich of minerals that will promote the production of red blood cells to optimize its function.
- Resist Cellular Aging
What you need to resist cellular aging is antioxidants. Unfortunately, though body could produce its own antioxidant but still the intake is not going to be enough. That’s why you need to obtain it from food you consume and luckily cardamom contains several types of antioxidants to fight the cellular aging.
- Treat Skin Allergic
Cardamom is also containing antibacterial properties. It is a common knowledge that these kinds of properties are effective to treat allergic and in this case is effective to treat skin allergic. It is not only that, cardamom is generally good for skin because it is so rich of antioxidant and vitamin C.
- Lip Care
Cardamom is not only widely used as main ingredients of chewing gum but the cardamom oil is essential ingredient for cosmetic as well. It is because cardamom has properties to smooth lips skin. You could use cardamom as natural lip care by applying the cardamom powder to your lips regularly to smooth it up.
- Promote Strong and Healthy Hair Growth
To promote strong and healthy hair growth you could consume cardamom or use it as outside treatment. You could add cardamom to your hair mask to fight infection and promote healthy scalp. Healthy scalp means the possibility of hair to growth healthier and stronger. The recommendation is to use black cardamom instead of the green or white one, cardamom benefits.
- Health Benefits of Chewing Mustard Seed
- Health Benefits of White Willow
- Health Benefits of Betel Leaves
Words of Cautions
Cardamom earns the title of Queen of Spice is not without reason. If you think because it is one of those expensive spice and then you’re wrong because asides from the long list of health benefits of cardamom, this spice is almost without side effect if you consume it in proper amount to spice up your food.
- However, to be in the safe side, women during pregnancy or breast-feeding is better to avoid cardamom for medication reasons but it is still safe for them to consume it as part of food spice.
- According to the recent studies, cardamom seed could trigger gallstone but once again, it could only occur if you consume it in greater amount. If you consume cardamom to spice up your food and then nothing you should worry about.
Well, Asian people is probably lucky because they have been living with this incredible spice practically in their whole life because to spice up their food, most of them are consuming cardamom in daily basis and perhaps without they realize it, they have been enjoying all the health benefits of cardamom. So, if you’re so into Asian cuisine perhaps it is the time to make sure cardamom is always available in your kitchen cupboard.