Cardamom may be a spice with an intense, slightly sweet flavor that some people compare to mint.
It originated in India but is out there worldwide today and utilized in both sweet and savory recipes.
The seeds, oils and extracts of cardamom are thought to possess impressive medicinal properties and are utilized in traditional medicine for hundreds of years (1, 2).
Here are 10 health benefits of cardamom, backed by science.
1. Antioxidant and Diuretic Properties May Lower vital sign
Cardamom could also be helpful for people with high vital sign .
In one study, researchers gave three grams of cardamom powder each day to twenty adults who were newly diagnosed with high vital sign . After 12 weeks, vital sign levels had significantly decreased to the traditional range (3Trusted Source).
The promising results of this study could also be associated with the high levels of antioxidants in cardamom. In fact, the participants’ antioxidant status had increased by 90% by the top of the study. Antioxidants are linked to lower vital sign (3Trusted Source, 4Trusted Source).
Researchers also suspect that the spice may lower vital sign thanks to its diuretic effect, meaning it can promote urination to get rid of water that builds up in your body, for instance around your heart.
Cardamom extract has been shown to extend urination and reduce vital sign in rats (5Trusted Source).
Cardamom may help lower vital sign , presumably thanks to its antioxidant and diuretic properties.
2. May Contain Cancer-Fighting Compounds
The compounds in cardamom may help fight cancer cells.
Studies in mice have shown that cardamom powder can increase the activity of certain enzymes that help fight cancer (6Trusted Source, 7Trusted Source).
The spice can also enhance the power of natural killer cells to attack tumors (8Trusted Source).
In one study, researchers exposed two groups of mice to a compound that causes carcinoma and fed one group 500 mg of ground cardamom per kg (227 mg per pound) of weight per day (7Trusted Source).
After 12 weeks, only 29% of the group who ate the cardamom developed cancer, compared to over 90% of the control group (7Trusted Source).
Research on human cancer cells and cardamom indicate similar results. One study showed that a particular compound within the spice stopped carcinoma cells in test tubes from multiplying (9Trusted Source).
Even though the results are promising, these studies have only been conducted on mice or in test tubes. Human research is required before stronger claims are often made.
Certain compounds in cardamom may fight cancer and stop the expansion of tumors in mice and test tubes. Human research is required to validate if these results apply to humans also .
3. May Protect from Chronic Diseases because of Anti-Inflammatory Effects
Cardamom is rich in compounds which will fight inflammation.
Inflammation occurs when your body is exposed to foreign substances. Acute inflammation is important and beneficial, but long-term inflammation can cause chronic diseases (10Trusted Source, 11Trusted Source, 12).
Antioxidants, found in abundance in cardamom, protect cells from damage and stop inflammation from occurring (13Trusted Source).
One study found that cardamom extract in doses of 50–100 mg per kg (23–46 mg per pound) of weight was effective in inhibiting a minimum of four different inflammatory compounds in rats (14Trusted Source).
Another study in rats showed that eating cardamom powder decreased liver inflammation induced by eating a diet high in carbs and fat (15Trusted Source).
Though there aren’t as many studies on the anti-inflammatory effects of cardamom in humans, research shows that supplements may increase antioxidant status by up to 90% (3Trusted Source).
The antioxidant compounds in cardamom may help protect cells from damage and hamper and stop inflammation in your body.
4. May Help with Digestive Problems, Including Ulcers
Cardamom has been used for thousands of years to assist with digestion.
It’s often mixed with other medicinal spices to alleviate discomfort, nausea and vomiting (1).
The most researched property of cardamom, because it pertains to relieving stomach issues, is its possible ability to heal ulcers.
In one study, rats were fed extracts of cardamom, turmeric and sembung leaf in predicament before being exposed to high doses of aspirin to induce stomach ulcers. These rats developed fewer ulcers compared to rats that only received aspirin (16Trusted Source).
A similar study in rats found that cardamom extract alone could completely prevent or reduce the dimensions of gastric ulcers by a minimum of 50%.
In fact, at doses of 12.5 mg per kg (5.7 mg per pound) of weight , cardamom extract was simpler than a standard anti-ulcer medication (17Trusted Source).
Test-tube research also suggests that cardamom may protect against Helicobacter pylori, a bacteria linked to the event of most stomach ulcer issues (18Trusted Source).
More research is required to understand if the spice would have an equivalent effect against ulcers in humans.
Cardamom may protect against digestive issues and has been shown to scale back the amount and size of stomach ulcers in rats.
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5. May Treat Bad Breath and stop Cavities
The use of cardamom to treat bad breath and improve oral health is an ancient remedy.
In some cultures, it’s common to freshen your breath by eating entire cardamom pods after a meal (1).
Even the chewing gum manufacturer Wrigley uses the spice in one among its products.
The reason why cardamom can cause minty fresh breath may need to do with its ability to fight common mouth bacteria (19Trusted Source).
One study found that cardamom extracts were effective in fighting five bacteria which will cause dental cavities. In some test-tube cases, the extracts prevented the expansion of the bacteria by up to 0.82 inches (2.08 cm) (20).
Additional research shows that cardamom extract can reduce the amount of bacteria in saliva samples by 54% (21).
However, all of those studies are conducted in test tubes, making it unclear how the results may apply to humans.
Cardamom is usually wont to treat bad breath and may be a component of some chewing gums. this is often because cardamom could be ready to kill common mouth bacteria and stop cavities.
6. May Have Antibacterial Effects and Treat Infections
Cardamom also has antibacterial effects outside of the mouth and should treat infections.
Research shows that cardamom extracts and essential oils have compounds that fight several common strains of bacteria (22Trusted Source, 23Trusted Source, 24Trusted Source, 25Trusted Source).
One test-tube study examined the impact of those extracts on drug-resistant strains of Candida, a yeastthat can cause fungal infections. The extracts were ready to inhibit the expansion of some strains by 0.39–0.59 inches (0.99–1.49 cm) (26Trusted Source).
Additional test-tube research found that essential oils and extracts of cardamom were even as , and sometimes simpler than standard drugs against E. coli and Staphylococcus, bacteria which will cause gastrointestinal disorder (23Trusted Source).
Test-tube studies have also shown that cardamom essential oils fight the bacteria Salmonella that results in gastrointestinal disorder and Campylobacter that contributes to stomach inflammation (24Trusted Source, 25Trusted Source).
Existing studies on the antibacterial effects of cardamom have only checked out isolated strains of bacteria in labs. Therefore, the evidence is currently not strong enough to form claims that the spice would have an equivalent effect in humans.
The essential oils and extracts of cardamom could also be effective against a spread of bacterial strains that contribute to fungal infections, gastrointestinal disorder and stomach issues. However, research has only been conducted in test tubes and not in humans.
7. May Improve Breathing and Oxygen Use
Compounds in cardamom may help increase airflow to your lungs and improve breathing.
One study asked a gaggle of participants to inhale cardamom volatile oil for one minute before walking on a treadmill for 15-minute intervals. This group had a significantly higher oxygen uptake compared to the control group (27).
Another way that cardamom may improve breathing and oxygen use is by relaxing your airway. this might be particularly helpful for treating asthma.
A study in rats and rabbits found that injections of cardamom extract could relax the throat air duct . If the extract features a similar effect in people with asthma, it’s going to prevent their inflamed airways from restricting and improve their breathing (28).
Cardamom may improve breathing by stimulating better oxygen uptake and relaxing air duct to the lungs in humans and animals.
8. May Lower blood glucose Levels
When taken in powder form, cardamom may lower blood glucose .
One study found that feeding rats a high-fat, high-carb (HFHC) diet caused their blood glucose levels to stay elevated longer than if they were fed a traditional diet (15Trusted Source).
When rats on the HFHC diet got cardamom powder, their blood glucose didn’t stay elevated for extended than the blood glucose of rats on a traditional diet (15Trusted Source).
However, the powder might not have an equivalent effect in humans with type 2 diabetes.
In a study in over 200 adults with this condition, participants were divided into groups that took only tea or tea with three grams of either cinnamon, cardamom or ginger a day for eight weeks (29Trusted Source).
The results showed that cinnamon, but not cardamom or ginger, improved blood glucose control (29Trusted Source).
In order to raised understand the effect of cardamom on blood glucose in humans, more studies are needed.
A study on rats suggests that cardamom may help decrease high blood glucose levels, but more high-quality human studies are needed.
9. Other Potential Health Benefits of Cardamom
In addition to the aforementioned health benefits, cardamom could also be good for your health in other ways also .
Studies in rats have found that the high antioxidant levels within the spice may prevent both liver enlargement, anxiety and even aid weight loss:
Liver protection: Cardamom extract may decrease elevated liver enzymes, triglyceride and cholesterol levels. they’ll also prevent liver enlargement and liver weight, which reduces the danger of liver disease disease (30, 31Trusted Source, 32Trusted Source, 33Trusted Source).
Anxiety: One rat study suggests that cardamom extract may prevent anxious behaviors. this might be because low blood levels of antioxidants are linked to the event of hysteria and other mood disorders (34Trusted Source, 35Trusted Source, 36Trusted Source).
Weight loss: A study in 80 overweight and obese prediabetic women found a link between cardamom and slightly reduced waist circumference. However, rat studies on weight loss and therefore the spice haven’t found significant results (15Trusted Source, 37Trusted Source)
The number of studies on the link between cardamom and these potential benefits is restricted and mostly done on animals.
Furthermore, the explanations why the spice may help improve liver health, anxiety and weight are unclear.
: A limited number of studies suggests that cardamom supplements may decrease waist circumference and stop anxious behaviors and liver disease . the explanations behind these effects are unclear but may need to do with the spice’s high antioxidant content.
10. Safe for many People and Widely Available
Cardamom is usually safe for many people.
The most common thanks to use cardamom is in cooking or baking. It’s very versatile and sometimes added to Indian curries and stews, also as gingerbread cookies, bread and other food .
The use of cardamom supplements, extracts and essential oils is probably going to become more common in light of the promising results of research on its medicinal uses.
However, there’s currently no recommended dose for the spice since most studies are on animals. the utilization of supplements should be monitored by a health care provider .
Furthermore, cardamom supplements might not be suitable for youngsters and ladies who are pregnant or breastfeeding.
If you’re curious about trying cardamom, remember that adding the spice to your foods could also be the safest way.