12 Proven Benefits of Black Cardamom

black cardamom - livayur

Black Cardamom is a popular flavoring spice widely used in Nepal, Bhutan, and India. The scientific term for Black Cardamom is Amomum subulatom Roxburgh. The spice belongs to the family of Zingiberaceae.[1] Black cardamom in Hindi is called Kali elaichi or Badi elaichi. This unique spice comes in rough textured seed pods with a smokey, bold flavor and taste. This aromatic spice is believed to have originated in the Eastern Himalayan region and is the third-most costly spice in the world. [2] The northeast Indian state of Sikkim alone produces 50% of the net global production of this fantastic spice. [3]

Nutritional value of black cardamom

Here’s the nutritional value of 100g of cardamom.

Energy311 kcal
Total lipid (fat)6.7g
Carbohydrate, by difference68.5g
Fiber, total dietary28g

Medicinal value of cardamom

Here are the medicinal values and benefits of cardamom.

1. Helps overcome stomach discomfort

It is common practice to include cardamom tinctures in medicinal formulations for addressing issues like stomach discomfort. The natural compounds in cardamom contribute to fighting digestive problems. [9]

2. Acts as a digestive remedy

Powdered cardamom seeds, when mixed with ground ginger, cloves, and caraway, create a potent mixture that can help in overcoming digestive ailments. [9]

3. Acts as aromatic stimulant and diuretic

Cardamom plays a critical role as a powerful aromatic stimulant. Additionally, it functions as a carminative, which helps in the expulsion of gas from the digestive tract. It is also a diuretic, which promotes the elimination of excess fluids from the body. [9]

4. Helps with nausea and vomiting control:

Cardamom helps in alleviating nausea and controlling vomiting. Its properties make it a valuable natural remedy for individuals experiencing discomfort due to these symptoms. [9]

5. Acts as a cardiac stimulant in stressful times

In today’s times, marked by stress and fast-paced lifestyles, cardamom has found a role as a cardiac stimulant. Its inclusion in medicinal practices is due to its potential to support heart health. [9]

Black cardamom uses

Primary black cardamom uses include:

Use as an Ayurvedic medical remedy for ailments

In this context, we can list the therapeutic properties of Black Cardamom as a medicinal herb. The properties and features of Black Cardamom, according to Ayurveda, are as follows:

  • Rasa (tikta meaning bitter, katu meaning pungent)
  • Guna (ruksha meaning dry, laghu meaning light)
  • Veerya (Ushna meaning hot)
  • Vipaka (Katu meaning pungent)
  • Karma (Dosha remedy; it heightens the pitta dosha and pacifies the vata and kapha doshas.)

Use as a mouth freshener

Black Cardamom has certain aromatic oils that can control bad breath and oral infections and is often used as a mouth freshener.

Use as a flavoring spice

In many of the signature dishes of Indian cuisine, Black Cardamom is a flavoring spice that can set your mouth watering.

Properties of cardamom

Cardamom, beyond its culinary charm, boasts a spectrum of health-promoting properties, positioning it as a versatile and beneficial spice.

1. Rich in antioxidant 

Cardamom is a potent source of antioxidants, compounds that counteract the damaging effects of free radicals in the body. These antioxidants help in neutralizing oxidative stress to contribute to cellular health and reduce the risk of chronic diseases. [10]

2. Contains anti-inflammatory attributes

The presence of bioactive compounds in cardamom imparts anti-inflammatory properties. These compounds may help overcome inflammation in the body and offer relief from conditions associated with chronic inflammation. [10]

3. Offers anticancer potential

Research suggests that cardamom exhibits potential anticancer properties. Certain compounds present in cardamom have demonstrated anti-carcinogenic effects. While more research is crucial, these findings highlight cardamom’s promising role in cancer prevention and treatment. [10]

4. Exhibits antimicrobial action

Cardamom possesses antimicrobial properties, making it effective against microorganisms. It helps combat bacteria and fungi to contribute to the maintenance of oral health and prevent microbial infections. [10]

Black Cardamom Benefits

1. Improves Liver Function:

Black cardamom can improve liver function and reverse alcohol-induced hepatic damage. The liver protective function of black cardamom results from decreased insulin resistance and liver steatosis, which this spice promotes.[1]

2. Promotes Heart Health:

Black Cardamom benefits consist of remarkable benefits for the heart. The spice triggers antioxidant activities in one’s heart and protects the heart’s muscular tissues. Ischemic heart disease can be prevented through regular consumption of black cardamoms.[3]

3. Improves Digestive Health:

Stomachic properties of black cardamom essential oil can help in digestion and stimulate appetite. Nausea, indigestion, abdominal aches, stomach ulcers, and rectal diseases may be treated using black cardamom. [2] [3]

4. Supports Oral Care:

Black cardamom decoctions have shown proven results in managing dental and gum-related issues, such as dental caries by destroying the bacteria thriving in the mouth.[2] [3]

5. Powerful Against Microbes:

Black cardamom possesses antimicrobial properties. According to research, black cardamom extracts can destroy strains of Bacillus cereus, Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.[2] Skin and lung infections caused by microbes can be cured using black cardamom.

6. Helps in Weight Loss:

Black cardamom benefits can slim you down. Taking black cardamom tea can reduce total body fat and abdominal girth significantly. 

7. Controls Blood Pressure (Hypertension)

Due to its diuretic properties, black cardamom can lower blood pressure. Increased urine volume leads to an increased expulsion of potassium and sodium, allowing blood vessels to relax and blood pressure to drop.

8. Relieves Aches & Pains:

Black cardamom has an anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving effect, and black cardamom oil may be used to treat various types of aches and pains, such as joint pains, headaches, and stomach aches.

9. Prevents Cancer:

Black cardamom benefits include its role in destroying various types of cancer cells. The spice is most effective in the case of lung cancer, liver cancer, and breast cancer.

10. Strengthens Immunity:

Black cardamom can strengthen your immunity and make you less susceptible to sickness.[7] Strengthening the immune system is the key to sound health. Apart from using black cardamom as an immunity booster, you can also try the Zandu Chyavanprash Avaleha, a potent immunity booster infused with the power of Ayurvedic herbs, such as Ashwagandha, Amla, Satavari, and Giloy.

11. Lowers Harmful Lipids:

Black cardamom has a lipid-lowering impact and can reduce LDL, Triglycerides, and VLDL levels, thereby strengthening your cardiovascular system

12. Stress-reliever & Sleep-promoting:

Black cardamom has a soothing and mind-calming effect that relieves stress, induces sleep, and helps you feel relaxed.

Side-effects of Black Cardamom

There is no evidence-based information regarding the side effects of black cardamom, but for some, it may cause breathing issues and pain while urinating.

How to consume black cardamom

Here are several ways to enjoy the unique taste of black cardamom:

1. Add to curries 

Black cardamom’s intense and smoky flavor profile makes it a perfect addition to rich dishes. Add whole black cardamom pods into curries and stews during cooking to impart a deep flavor to the preparation.

2. Use as spice blends

Grind black cardamom seeds to create an aromatic spice blend. Combine it with other spices like cumin, coriander, and cloves to make your own unique seasoning mix.

3. Use in rice and pulao

Drop a whole black cardamom pod into the pot when cooking rice or pulao. The heat will release its essence and subtly flavor the grains.

4. Add to masala chai

Improve the taste of your masala chai by adding a crushed black cardamom pod to the mix. The smokiness of black cardamom pairs well with the other spices found in chai.

5. Use in desserts and baked goods

Explore the realm of sweet treats by incorporating ground black cardamom into desserts and baked goods. Its bold and smoky notes can add depth to cookies, cakes, and even chocolate-based recipes.

Side effects of cardamom

Here are some possible side effects associated with cardamom consumption:

1. Allergic reactions

Individuals with a known allergy to cardamom or related plants may experience allergic reactions. Symptoms can include skin irritation or itching.

2. Gastrointestinal issues

In some cases, excessive consumption of cardamom may lead to gastrointestinal issues. These can include nausea, gas, or an upset stomach.

3. Interaction with medications

Cardamom may interact with certain medications, particularly those related to blood clotting. People taking anticoagulant or antiplatelet medications should exercise caution and consult a healthcare professional.

FAQs about Black Cardamom

1. What is the shelf-life of black cardamom?

Raw black cardamom can last up to 3 years if stored properly. Powdered black cardamom can last about 2-3 months.

2. How should you store black cardamom?

It would be best to store black cardamom in airtight containers away from direct sunlight.

3. How many seeds are there in a pod of black cardamom?

There are nearly 8 to 16 seeds in a black cardamom pod.


Black cardamom, a special spice used in many of the luxurious, signature delicacies of the Indian subcontinent, comes with immense medicinal value as per the principles of Ayurveda. This aromatic herb can treat a wide range of illnesses and can also add a distinct flavor to some of those mouth-watering delicacies. In this article, we have discussed the details of black cardamom benefits for health.


The information in this article is solely for educational purposes and is not medical advice. For any disease, the reader must consult a doctor before using black cardamom for treatment.


  1. Green and Black Cardamom in a Diet-Induced Rat Model of Metabolic Syndrome
  3. Amomum subulatum Roxb: Traditional, phytochemical and biological activities-An overview
  4. Beneficial Effects of Black Cardamom (Amomum subulatum) on Hemodynamic Parameters in Normotensive and Spontaneously Hypertensive Rats
  6. NUS study: Black cardamom effective against lung cancer cells
  7. Spicing up Health: Large Cardamom
  8. Spices, cardamom
  9. Medicinal properties of Elettaria cardamomum
  10. Benefits of Cardamom (Elettariacardamomum(L.)Maton)  and Turmeric (CurcumalongaL.) Extracts for Their Applications as Natural Anti-Inflammatory Adjuvants

Dr. Deepa Kadam

Dr. Deepa has over 25 years of experience making her one of the notable medical professionals in the field of Ayurveda with expertise in Ayurvedic pharmacology.


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