Published: 09/14/2012 - Updated: 10/30/2018
Author: Miriam Reyes
Spices are a very useful tool in the kitchen; they season and give a special touch to our dishes. But how much do we know about their properties? Today we’ll present a spice that can be rare but is a treasure of nature, cardamom.
Most people are familiar with it because of the fragrant cardamom Indian dishes, but this tasty spice makes more than curry and chai flavor, it also has numerous health benefits, such as improving digestion and stimulate metabolism. Although it is easy to find in markets, the pods are relatively expensive, because they must be chosen one by one.
Cardamom, from to India, is mentioned in the Vedic texts and in Ayurvedic medicine. Ancient cultures, such as Greek, Roman, Egyptian and Arab were cardamom fans as salt consumers; it was considered to have aphrodisiac properties and was used in love potions. The Arabian Nights makes frequent reference to it.
Besides being a catalyst for romance, cardamom also has numerous health benefits because of the high amounts of volatile oils such as borneol, camphor, eucalyptol, limonene and terpinine, among others.
Although it is more popularly used as an herbal seasoning that is added to food to provide a strong aroma and flavor, in Ayurveda, it is considered to be a very useful and effective medication.
- Detoxifies the body of caffeine
- Clean the kidneys and bladder, some Ayurvedic practitioners also recommend its use for the treatment of urinary tract infection.
- It stimulates the digestive system and reduces gas, according to the traditional wisdom of Ayurveda, cardamom is effective to improve digestion. Help those suffering from stomach pain. It is a good stimulant and beneficial for those who suffer from bloating and gas.
- It has expectorant action.
- Improves circulation to the lungs and thus it’s considered good for asthma and bronchitis, it is beneficial for those suffering from various kinds of respiratory allergies. When you have a sore throat, you can try a small amount of this medicinal spice.
- It can counteract excess acidity in the stomach
- Stimulates appetite
- Remedy for tendency to infection, is a good remedy for weakness in general.
- It is useful for treating bad breath
- Along with some other drugs, can be used to treat mouth ulcers.
The amount of cardamom that needs to be consumed depends on an individual's physiology and the disease being treated.
An unique taste
Cardamom is not only healthy, it's tasty, too. It is known as grain of paradise, Ela (Sanskrit) and Elachi or elaichi (in India). This versatile spice works equally well in sweet or spicy dishes. The seeds may be ground into powder, or whole pods can be used.
You can use cardamom in cakes, to flavor drinks. In India, cardamom is one of the spices used to make Garam Masala (a popular spice mix) and therefore it has great taste in savory recipes like tandoori or chicken vindaloo and vegetable dishes. It also works well in herbal teas and health tonics, chai lattes and even coffee. If you enjoy a unique taste, try cardamom in simple drink like coffee.
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