Sunday, April 28, 2013

Cardamom, the aroma alone can captivate you!



Did you know that cardamom is a member of the ginger family?  We just found that out, ourselves.  It is one of the most valuable spices in the world due to its rich aroma and therapeutic properties.  

A perennial, cardamom produces vast, fleshy root structures. It has large leaves, green and white flowers, with slightly bitter fruit and large seeds. These seeds contain a variety of important minerals such as calcium, sulfur, and phosphorus. They also contain volatile oil   which makes up about 5% of the seed, and has aromatic and medicinal properties, making cardamom so valuable.

If you love garlic and onions or other things that can cause a tummy ache if eaten in large quantities, cardamom can help relieve your problems.  It is even good for conditions such as indigestion, heartburn, gas and constipation.    

Eastern cultures, like India and Asia, have been taking advantage of cardamon for centuries for such problems as a sore throat or hoarseness along with acting as an aid in passing gall and kidney stones. It can be mixed with other ingredients to address urinary problems.

In addition to relieving the symptoms of indigestion, cardamom is one of the most effective remedies against bad breath (halitosis). Simply chewing on the seeds eliminates bad odors. Cardamom is even used in some chewing gums because of its effectiveness, billed as a surefire cure to the most offensive breath.

The soothing aroma of cardamom oils is a great addition to baths as a form of aromatherapy that fights depression and reduces stress. In a beverage ground cardamom seeds can be made into a tea with similar benefits.  

Early research suggest that consuming cardamom regularly may help in preventing breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and prostate cancer. In addition to these specific medicinal uses, cardamom contains an abundance of antioxidants, which protect the body against aging and stress, and fight common sicknesses.

This wonderful spice soothes and calms on so many levels!  Find ways to incorporate it in your daily dietary routine.  

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