Taste (Rasa): Sweet; Pungent
Energetics (Virya): Heating
Doshic Effects: Balancing for all three doshas
Benefits & Use: Cardamom is related to ginger and can be used in much the same way to counteract digestive problems. Part of the reason cardamom is such a good digestive aid and detoxifier is thanks to the diuretic properties. It helps clean out the urinary tract, bladder, and kidneys, removing waste, salt, excess water, toxins, and combating infections too. As a diuretic and fiber rich spice, cardamom also prevents blood clots and significantly lowers blood pressure.
Additional Uses: Reduce kidney & gall stones; mouth ulcers; hiccups; gum infections; antidote for poison and venom; breath freshener
In the Kitchen: Whole cardamom pods are more fragrant and medicinal than ground ones. Look for small football shaped pods that have a green tint and smell like a combination of pine and flowers. If ground cardamom is needed, remove and grind the seeds from a whole pod with a mortar and pestle or spice grinder. Note: ground cardamom loses its flavor rapidly while the whole pod stays potent for a year or longer.
Recipe: Cardamom Oatmeal Cookies