Cardamom is one of my favorite spices and it’s also one of luxury due to all the many exotic and healthy benefits of using cardamom. If you haven’t heard of this sweet ethnic spice, let me introduce you to a new one to love. Go to your local Whole Foods and grab a jar of the 365 brand of ground cardamom on the spice aisle. Sprinkle a touch on your oatmeal or yogurt, or add some to a smoothie. You just need a pinch since it’s high in flavor and very prominent in taste. It smells like a dream, and tastes sweet like cinnamon, but much lighter and more of a lemony flavor than a heavy spice flavor like cinnamon or ginger. It’s got a great fresh, light, yet sweet taste that pairs well with any food. It’s often used in Indian curries, or other ethnic blends like Garam Masala. I prefer to add this ethnic spice, which comes from cardamom pods that are green in color, to my sweet dishes that have cinnamon and ginger to round out a perfectly sweet flavor. Not only does cardamom taste good, but there are plenty benefits of cardamom that should convince you to add it to your diet. Check them out, and don’t forget to pick up a jar soon!
1. Digestion Aid
One of my favorite benefits of using cardamom is it’s a natural digestion aid. It’s full of natural properties that relieve gas, bloating and help fight constipation. For this reason, it makes a great addition to any dish, or even added to herbal tea.
2. Increases Serotonin
Another wonderful benefit of using cardamom is it increases serotonin - the happy hormone. This prevents depression, and helps relieve anxiety. Cardamom is great for helping you relax due to this property, and it also gives you a positive sense of energy, even when just smelling it.
3. Healthy Hormones
Because cardamom increases serotonin, it also fights the stress hormone cortisol, which makes you anxious and feel off center. This creates hormone havoc in your whole body in multiple ways. Herbs and spices such as cardamom are some of nature’s best answers for fighting cortisol in the body. Cardamom is especially great as it activates neurons in the brain just like chocolate does, to promote serotonin production, along with reducing cortisol. Best of all, it’s all natural and stimulant free.
4. Healthy Appetite
I don’t notice I’m hungrier when eating cardamom, but this spice is well known to be an aid for people with low appetites, to help them increase their appetite. It was used back in older times for people who were low in weight and needed to increase their appetites. I’m willing to bet it was because this spice truly is so good! Dont’ believe me? Add some to a bowl of oatmeal or yogurt with blueberries. It’s divine and will definitely make you want to finish your breakfast with no problems at all!
5. Sugar Free
Perhaps one of my favorite things about cardamom is it’s sugar free, yet tastes sweet. This is much better for your insulin than artificial sweeteners, which can raise sugar levels in the body, and with all the other benefits of using cardamom, it’s simply another plus.
6. Reduced Acne
Cardamom is actually an anti-bacterial aid as well. It helps fight bad bacteria in the body, which can result in acne on your skin. Though it isn’t an overnight solution, over time, with a healthy diet free of sugars and foods that promote acne, cardamom is an excellent addition to decreasing skin problems.
7. Libido Enhancer
Lastly, for those of you interested in natural libido enhancers, cardamom is one of the most well known spices to do so. Cayenne, ginger and maca root are other great libido enhancers, but don’t forget about the delicious cardamom either! It helps increase sexual desire and fight low libido in the body.
Cardamom pairs well with many, many foods. One of my favorite recipes is my Banana Cardamom Green Smoothie, which you can find on my blog at : soulfulspoon.com. Have you ever heard of, or used cardamom?