Cardamom is part of the Zingiberaceae botanical family and consists of two types- Elletaria and Amomum cardamom. Elettaria pods are small and light green, while the Amomum pods are larger and dark brown. Scientific evidence shows that Cardamom contains components which protect and prevent blood clots from clumping in the blood stream. Furthermore, scientific analysis has found that cardamom is a wonderful dietary source of limonene, a chemical primarily found in the skin of citrus fruits. A Brazilian study performed revealed that consumption of limonene boosted antioxidant activity.
Here are some health benefits of Cardamom:
- This exotic spice contains many plants derived chemical compounds that are known to have been anti-oxidant, disease preventing and health promoting properties.
- The spicy pods contain many essential volatile oils that include pinene, sabinene, myrcene, phellandrene, limonene, 1, 8-cineole, terpinene, p-cymene, terpinolene, linalool, linalyl acetate, terpinen-4-oil, a-terpineol, a-terpineol acetate, citronellol, nerol, geraniol, methyl eugenol, and trans-nerolidol.
- The therapeutic properties of cardamom-oil have found application in many traditional medicines as antiseptic, antispasmodic, carminative, digestive, diuretic, expectorant, stimulant, stomachic and tonic.
- Cardamom is a good source of minerals like potassium, calcium, and magnesium. 100 g pods conatin 1119 mg of this electrolyte. Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids that helps control heart rate and blood pressure. Copper is required in the production of red blood cells.
- Additionally, it is also an excellent source of iron and manganese. 100 g pods contain 13.97 mg or 175% of daily-required levels of iron. Iron is required for red blood cell formation and cellular metabolism. Manganese is a co-factor for the enzyme, superoxide dismutase, which is a very powerful free radical scavenger.
- Further, these aromatic pods are rich in many vital vitamins, including riboflavin, niacin, vitamin-C that is essential for optimum health.