cardamom benefits

Key Takeaways :

  • Digestive Relief: Cardamom has been used traditionally for digestive issues like heartburn, bloating, and cramps.
  • Blood Sugar Management: Studies suggest cardamom may help regulate blood sugar levels after a meal, potentially beneficial for those with prediabetes or type 2 diabetes (consult a doctor first).
  • Antioxidant Powerhouse: Cardamom is rich in antioxidants, which may help protect cells from damage and reduce inflammation. This general benefit can contribute to various aspects of health.
  • Bad Breath Buster: Cardamom’s antibacterial properties may freshen breath and combat bad breath.
Written by Vahid Epagloo, Food Consultant

Cardamom is a famous spice and is used all over the world today. The fame of this spice is due to its wonderful aroma. In the past, spices were important because there was no fridge and people need something to change the smell of old raw materials. It means that spices with aroma are more effective and popular. Cardamom is not just an aromatic spice, it could be an effective drug too.

What is cardamom?

Cardamom is the seed of a plant named the genera Elettaria and Amomum. These plants are from ginger families that are the native to India and Indonesia. You may see cardamom as cardamom or cardamom; All these are the names of the same spice.

The shape of cardamom recognize by the small seed pods with papery outer shell.

Usually, the powders of the seeds that are hidden in the shell are called cardamom powder. Actually, these seeds are cardamom. These plants are native throughout Asia. The sources found the first cardamom plants in the Sumer and Ayurvedic literature in India. Today, Guatemala, Malaysia, and Tanzania are the producers of this aromatic spice.

Types of cardamom

There are two types of cardamom, green and black one. Both of them are from the ginger family and have the same medicinal benefits, but there are some differences, too. The most famous one is the green cardamom that is called the queen of the spices that is one of the high priced and expensive spices in the world. It has a great aroma, and a flavor like eucalyptus. This spice used in foods, beverages and desserts.

The black cardamom is larger than the green one and has a hot, smoky, and pungent flavor that makes it a proper choice to add to the curry spices. This cardamom has medicinal properties too.

Both of cardamom types have the aroma and health benefits to use.

The health benefits of cardamom

Cardamom has many health benefits. It has been used as the treatment for many diseases in the traditional medicine. India has old herbal medicine; one of the main prescription drugs is cardamom. Today, scientist and experts try to prove all health benefits of cardamom. They start tests and experiments over it and its components. Here we gather some of cardamom benefits for you.

Reduce blood pressure

Cardamom has high levels of antioxidant and could be diuretic. In a clinical study, experts gave 3 mg cardamom powder per day to a group of 20 adults with high blood pressure. The results show the significant decreasing in their blood pressure after 12 weeks. Experts believe that these results are related to the antioxidant properties of cardamom. Antioxidants are linked to lower blood pressure. There are also some guesses about the diuretic properties of cardamom. This effect could promote urination to remove water in your body that helps your body reduce the blood pressure.

You may use cardamom for your high blood pressure, but do not forget that you should use it regularly to see and feel its effects.

Anti cancer effect

Cardamom has components that they can fight cancer cells. There are studies on animal models that show cardamom can increase the activity of special enzymes, which are helpful in fighting cancer cells. This spice could also improve the ability of natural killer cells in our body to fight the tumors.

There are also studies on the human body. These studies show the positive results. One of them shows that a certain component in cardamom stopped oral cancer cells to multiply in the test tubes. The tests on human are not yet completed, and till then doctors cannot introduce this spice as a treatment for cancer cells.

You can use this spice as an anti cancer or treatment for cancer cells, but if you consult experts, they want you to use chemical drugs too. There is no proof of this effect of cardamom in the science world yet.

Help with digestive disorders and problems

Herbal medicines used cardamom to treat and help digestion like ulcers for many years. Today, experts would prescribe using ground cardamom in combination with aspirins. The studies on the animal models show that using this combination is more effective than using only aspirins.

The results of another study show that using only cardamom in rats for the stomach ulcers could reduce or prevent the size of the ulcers at least 50 percent. In some cases, using cardamom is more effective than the anti-ulcer medications.

About the effects of cardamom on human digestive issues, more studies needed. The tests are still on animal models and test tubes.

Treatment for breathing problems

One of the ancient uses of cardamom is as the treatment of bad breath and improves oral health.

In some cultures, people need to eat fragrant foodstuffs after their meal in order to have fragrant and fresh breath; one of these foodstuffs is cardamom pods. Today, there are chewing gum with the cardamom or the cardamom essential oil. This effect of cardamom may be due to its ability to fight mouth bacteria, the common ones.

One study over this effect showed that cardamom could fight five bacteria that cause dental cavities. The studies over these effects of cardamom and cardamom extract are conducted in test tubes and animal model; there is no exact result about its effects on the human body.

Cardamom has compounds that could help increase airflow to your lungs and improve breathing. Cardamom in aromatherapy could provide an invigorating odor and by this effect can enhance the ability of oxygen usage of the body when you do the exercises.

In a study, a group of people uses cardamom a minute before 15 minutes treadmill walking, in comparison to the control group, they have significantly higher oxygen uptake.

Cardamom could help to treat asthma by relaxing your airway during breath and oxygen use.

Antibacterial effects

Cardamom has antibacterial effects in the body any could help the treatment of infections. The results of a test tube study show that cardamom and its extract could be effective in the treatment of fungal infections.

Other researches, yet test tubes, found that the cardamom and its products are sometimes more effective than the common drugs against E. coil and Staphylococcus, bacteria. These bacteria can cause the food poisoning. These researches also sound that cardamom can fight Salmonella bacteria that poison foods and Campylobacter that intensify the stomach inflammation.

Due to the point that all the tests and researches over this effect are test tubes, not human body, the evidence to use this on humans for the same reason is not strong enough.

Reduce blood sugar levels

In the powder or grounded form, cardamom could reduce blood sugar. Studies on animal models showed that using ground cardamom in the high fat, high-carb diet caused lower blood sugar levels than normal diet. Researchers believe that this powder has not similar effects on human with type 2 diabetes. About the cardamom effects on the blood sugar levels in human, more tests and studies are needed.

Anti-inflammatory properties of cardamom

Cardamom has anti-inflammatory effects that mean it could help to protect from chronic diseases.

Inflammation is the body’s action against the foreign substances. This action is necessary and beneficial. Although this is a beneficial action, if it takes a long time, can lead to chronic diseases. Anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties in the cardamom can protect cells from damage and inflammation. Studies on these properties of cardamom are not finished yet; there is no proof about its positive effects on the human bodies.

Promote sleep

Green cardamom has melatonin. Melatonin is a hormone that is releases in the human body by the hypophysis in response to the darkness in order to make the body ready for a good sleep. A pinch of cardamom that mixed with milk is the ancient treatment of the sleep disorders. Using cardamom and its mixture, especially in the beverages, before bed could have sedative effects and reduces fatigue.

Affecting on the heart health

The results of studies on animal models consider the effects of cardamom on the heart health. Cardamom could protect against heart attacks. This effect could be the results of antioxidant properties in this expensive spice.

Other research found that cardamom could reduce the cholesterol levels in rats.

By these two effects cardamom could improve the function of the heart and cardiac systems. There is not enough study to generalize the results on the human body.

Other effects

Cardamom has other health benefits too, these benefits are under the tests and researches, but the traditional medicines believe in them.


Cardamom may reduce the liver enzymes, triglyceride and cholesterol levels. The cardamom and its products could also decrease the risk of fatty liver diseases by preventing enlargement and liver weight.


As we mentioned above, cardamom has antioxidant activities, theses activities cause low blood levels that linked to the improvement of anxiety and other moods. In other words, cardamom should prevent anxious behaviors.

Weigh loss

Botanical experts and traditional medicines claim that cardamom may help weight lose and could be the remedy for obesity, still there is not enough evidence to prove it.

Natural pain reliever

Cardamom is known as the natural pain reliever, you can use it as a pain reliever to treat your headache, toothache or any other pain in your body. You may see its effects on relieving pain, but scientists need more tests and evidence to accept this effect.

Cardamom and saffron

Cardamom and saffron both are expensive spices that grow in Asia. There are similarity and differences between these two famous spices. They both have especial health effects on the human body. Traditional medicines accept them as a treatment for most of the diseases. They also have great culinary use and exiting history. Here are some of their similarities and differences.

We explain similarities and differences in all usage of these two spices.

Culinary use

Saffron has a fragrant aroma, cardamom too. The aromas of these two spices are not like each other but both of them used as a perfume in the past, due to their exotic aroma. Today, perfume industries use them as raw material to produce unique perfumes.

Saffron and cardamom both have a flavor that can affect the taste of food and recipes. Saffron has a soft bitterness; cardamom flavor is sweet and hot like mint.

Cardamom would not release any color, while saffron releases a golden yellow color.

Medicinal properties

Saffron and cardamom are used in medicine and especially herbal medicines to cure many diseases, some of these diseases are similar that means some their properties are the same. There are also some diseases that one of these spices could be effective on, that mean there are some differences in their properties too.

Cardamom and saffron both have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. These properties make both these spices great for treatment of diseases like cancer, inflammation, heart problems and anxiety.

Both these expensive spices are used as the treatment of the sleep disorders, cancer cell, and breathing problems.

Saffron effects are tested on the human bodies and most of its benefits are proven, but cardamom is still under the test.

Cardamom could have positive effects on ulcers, while saffron would intensify the stomach disorders and using saffron is prohibited for theses cases.

There are limited cases for using saffron, while experts do not prohibit using cardamom for any cases. It could be this like due to not proven properties of cardamom.


Saffron is the stigmas of a Crocus Sativus flower, however, cardamom is the seed of a tree called Elettaria cardamomum. Cardamom seeds have two types, green and black; the types of saffron are different in quality and processing method.

Saffron needs especial conditions to grow, while cardamom growing has not many conditions and especial ones. Both of these herbs grow in Asia. Saffron is Iranian, and cardamom is Indian.

How to use cardamom

You can add cardamom to your food, desserts and beverages. You can also use it itself. Experts prescribe to put a cardamom pod under your tongue as a medication. If you want to use cardamom in your food and desserts it is better to use ground cardamom, while it is recommended to use its seed or pod in the beverages.

One of the most popular cardamom usages is adding it into different kinds of tea; the most favorite one is the mix of saffron tea and cardamom.

Do not use too much cardamom, it can change the flavor and destroy the taste of your recipes.


Experts prescribe adding cardamom to your diet. It can be the natural treatment for most of the diseases. Although the health benefits of cardamom are not proven yet, experts accept its positive effects on our health.

Add this aromatic spice to your diet and feel its awesome effects.


Can I use the mixture of saffron and cardamom?

You can add cardamom to your saffron tea or mix these two in any beverages. But it is better not to use both of them in your recipes, saffron and cardamom, both have exotic aroma, the mix of these aroma is not wonderful. It is recommended to use one of them. If you need to mix them in a recipe, it is better to use saffron with cardamom extract or cardamom with saffron extract or saffron oil.

Is it trusted to buy cardamom powder?

As you know cardamom is an expensive spice, when it has a high price that means frauds try to sell you fake cardamom. Making fake powder is the easiest way to sell fake products. If you do not know trusted sellers, it is better to buy real cardamom seeds and grind it yourself.

Can I use cardamom as a medication?

The effects of cardamom are not proven yet, if you want to use it as a medication, it is better to use it with your prescribed drugs. Also, it is recommended to consult an expert before using it as a medication. But adding this spice in the daily diet could be beneficial to your health and body.