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Cardamom is an intense spice with a slightly sweet flavour that originated from India. It is in the ginger family, commonly compared to mint and used in sweet and savoury dishes. Cardamom could be used as whole pods, seeds, or ground and is an ingredient added in the masala spice mix used by many in seasoning dishes and meat.
The cardamom seeds, oils and extracts are believed to possess medicinal properties, hence their use in herbal and traditional medicine for centuries. Here are three health benefits of cardamom.
1. Anti-oxidant Properties
Cardamom is believed to be helpful for people with high blood pressure.
According to researches, it was shown that subjects diagnosed with high blood pressure who were given cardamom showed a significant decrease in blood pressure levels after some weeks. This effectiveness was attributed to the high level of anti-oxidants present in cardamom and found to be in high levels in the test participants. Anti-oxidants have been attributed to lowering blood pressure and decreasing inflammation.
2. May Help with Digestive Problems
For years, Cardamom has been used to aid digestion, often mixed with other medicinal spices and used to relieve discomfort, stomach issues, ulcers and nausea. It is also believed.
3. Anti-cancer properties
Cardamom is said to contain natural phytochemicals, which are compounds that could help fight illnesses such as cancer. This means that the spice could have anti-cancer properties.
Cooking with Cardamom
Cardamom is mostly used in Middle Eastern, Swedish and Indian cuisines for various dishes, from rice to curries and desserts. In Indian recipes and dishes, whole cardamom pods are used in preparing curries and basmati rice while the ground cardamom is used to prepare desserts in Middle Eastern dishes.
Cardamom has a sweet, strong and intense aroma and flavour, with smoky, mint and lemon hints.
When cooking with cardamom, you have a variety of choices; you could use the whole pods, which are used whole and discarded when the meal is ready or use the ground cardamom, which you can sprinkle in your dish to give the flavour. However, the whole pod gives more flavour because it still contains its oil extracts.
In addition to India and the Middle East who are popular for the use of cardamom in their recipes, Sweden is one of the countries that consume the most cardamom. It is one of the most popular seasons in Sweden, used to prepare every dish, from meatloaves to hamburgers. Cardamom flavour works perfectly when combines with nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves in recipes. They are all popular in Indian cuisines too, making up masala mixed spices. There are also drink recipes that include a hint of cardamom, giving it an exciting and unexpected taste.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.
© 2021 Loretta Osakwe Awosika