Cardamom is the common name of Elettaria Cardamomum. In Hindi it is known as Chhoto Elaichi. The Sanskrit name for cardamom is Elka or Ela. Since olden times it has been used as a spice in traditional cooking. It has other features also which are useful in relieving various ailments.
The plant is indigenous to India, Bhutan and Nepal. But at present Guatemala is the largest exporter and producer of cardamom in the world followed by India.
Cardamom is considered to be the third expensive spice the other two being saffron and vanilla.
Since 1000 AD cardamom is being traded with other countries. In India cardamom is grown widely in the forests of Coorg, Mysore, Travancore, Cochin and Wynaad.
CHARACTERISTICS OF ELETTARIA CARDAMOMUM
Cardamom is a perennial herb with fleshy and thick rhizomes which have leafy roots and also leafy stems. The leaves are big with white or pale green in colour. The fruit is a three celled capsule containing around 15-20 black aromatic seeds.
PARTS OF THE PLANT USED AS MEDICINE
Oil and seeds of cardamom are used in herbal medicines and the seeds are useful in preparing coffee, goods, desserts, pickles and mulled wine.
THERAPEUTIC POWERS OF ELETTARIA CARDAMOMUM
Elettaria Cardamomum has several beneficial therapeutic properties.
Some of these are:-
- Caradamom is a warm, pungent and aromatic herb which has stimulating, expectorant and tonic properties. It is also known to contain aphrodisiac qualities. Cardamom works as an antidote for mucus forming foods like dairy products and coffee.
- The oil in the seeds contains antimycotic, antibacterial, spasmolytic and antiviral properties. They are used for antispasmodic, carminative and expectorant effects.
- Cardamom is effective in relieving nausea, vomiting, indigestion and pulmonary diseases.
- It is used as a laxative to reduce flatulence and stomach ache.
- The seeds when chewed freshen the breath and work well on people who consume excessive amount of coffee as a detoxifier.
- The seeds are widely used in food preparation in Middle East and Northern Europe. They are also used for flavoring baked goods, coffee, tea, curries, milk desserts, pickles and mulled wine.
Cardamom capsule consists of moisture, carbohydrates, ether extract, protein, crude fibre, volatile oil, phosphorus, calcium and iron. The seeds of cardamom contain a volatile oil which has terpineol, cineol, limonene and sabinene. Terpineol is seen in the form of acetic and formic acids.
Cardamom essential oil has useful invigorating and uplifting properties and helps in nausea and digestion. The oil works well for relieving premenstrual tension and eases coughs. It also warms the body. Cardamom oil has carminative, antiseptic, diuretic, stomachic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, and tonic properties.
CARE FOR AILMENTS
Elettaria Cardamomum proves helpful in relieving several ailments. Some of these are:-
- Digestive disorders: cardamom increases appetite, reduces water and air elements and acts on the mucous membrane. Gas caused by onion and garlic can be eliminated by consuming cardamom seeds. For relieving indigestion, a mixture of clove, coriander, ginger and cardamom seeds should be consumed. For reducing head ache, tea made by cardamom seeds is effective.
- Bad Breath: Cardamom seeds have aromatic flavour and they work effectively in removing bad breath. Chewing a few seeds of cardamom will eliminate bad odour.
- Depression: Ground cardamom seeds boiled in water to prepare tea give pleasant smell, which is useful in controlling depression.
- Urinary disorders: Cardamom seeds should be powdered and mixed with amla juice and a tablespoon of banana juice. This mixture works like a diuretic for relieving cystitis, gonorrhea, nephritis and scanty urination.
- Impotency: Cardamom is useful for relieving sexual dysfunctions like premature ejaculation and impotency. A pinch of cardamom seeds should be mixed with milk and honey and consumed daily for good results. But precaution should be taken not to indulge in overdose of the herb.
- Oral disorders: For relieving sore throat and Pharyngitis, a mixture made with cardamom and cinnamon will yield good results. Gargling with this mixture every day will protect people from the attack of flu.
- Hiccups: In a cup of water, two whole cardamoms along with few mint leaves should be crushed and boiled. It can be used to relieve hiccups.
SAFETY AND PRECAUTIONARY TIPS WHILE USING ELETTARIA CARDAMOMUM
Cardamom should not be used during pregnancy and not advisable for persons suffering from gallstones. People with sensitive skin should also be careful while using this oil.
It is better to consult a registered medical practitioner before consuming any herbs.
PLANET AYURVEDA PRODUCTS USING ELETTARIA CARDAMOMUM
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