Other Names: Cardamomier (French); Kardamompflanze (German); cardamomo (Italian).
Description: Cardamom is a leafy perennial herb with hairless leaves neatly arranged along thick fleshy stalks. The attractive flowers are borne at ground Level on much-branched flowering stems and they develop into small green, white or brown three-valved capsules, each containing several brown seeds.
Origin: India and Sri Lanka. It is commonly cultivated in India, Malaysia, Indonesia and Guatemala.
Parts Used: Fruits and seeds (Cardamomi fructus) or the seed oil (Cardamomi aetheroleum), rarely the rhizomes. The seed capsules are hand-harvested just before they split open and are dried in the sun. Cardamom seeds are easily adulterated with seeds of other species; the capsules less easily. As a result, whole fruits with seeds are preferred as raw material, even though the capsules on their own do not contribute to the yield of essential oil.
Therapeutic Category: Cholagogue, antimicrobial.
Uses and Properties: The seeds have been widely used as a spice since ancient times but are also an important Ayurvedic aphrodisiac and supportive in case of digestive problems, asthma, bronchitis and urinary complaints. It is used against bad breath, cough and nausea and may be combined with laxatives to help support indigestion, stomach pain, griping and flatulence.
Active Ingredients: The seeds contain essential oil in concentrations of about 4% of dry weight. The main compound is 1,8-cineole (representing 50% or more), with smaller amounts of alpha-terpineol, borneol, camphor, limonene and alpha-terpenyl acetate.
Health Effects: The monoterpenes show antibacterial, antimycotic and antiviral activities and spasmolytic properties. These constituents would also plausibly explain the claimed carminative, antispasmodic and expectorant effects. Fruit extracts promoted the secretion of gastric juices and bile in rats and rabbits.
Notes: Cardamom is an important spice and flavourant, used in cooking (e.g. curry powders), baking and various drinks. The essential oil is an ingredient of perfumes.
Status: Traditional health; Pharm.; Comm. E+.
Preparation and Dosage: A daily dose of 1.5 g crushed or ground seeds (or equivalent extracts and liquid extracts) is recommended.
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Take 1 capsule, 3 times daily, with meals.
According to Ayurvedic practice, cardamom should be avoided during pregnancy; not recommended for patients with gallstones.
End of More Photographs - Cardamom Seed Pod - 450 mg
* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Products are intended to support general well being and are not intended to treat, diagnose, mitigate, prevent, or cure any condition or disease. If conditions persist, please seek advice from your medical doctor. Information provided at ZooScape.com relies partly on Traditional Uses. The essence of the current American rule on Traditional Uses is, as stated by FTC, "Claims based on historical or traditional use should be substantiated by confirming scientific evidence, or should be presented in such a way that consumers understand that the sole basis for the claim is a history of use of the product for a particular purpose."