Black Cardamom (Badi Elaichi) – Health Benefits and Side Effects
Black cardamom is a Indian spice that is commonly known as ‘Badi Elaichi or Kali Elaichi’ in Hindi and “Brihad ela” or “Sthula ela” in Sanskrit. Black cardamom, also known as Bengal cardamom, hill cardamom, Indian cardamom, greater cardamom, winged cardmom, Nepal cardamom, brown cardamom and scientific name is “Amomum subulatum”.
Its aromas a bit like camphor or mint and is mostly used in savory dishes rather than sweet or salty dishes. People do consider black cardamom little inferior to green cardamom, but it’s not true as black cardamoms have it on importance. Black cardamoms are uses are numerous; it is not only benefits for health but also for hair and skin maintenance.
Types of Cardamom
1.Black Cardamom (Amomum)
These types of cardamom are not so popularly known than the regular green types of cardamom. Black Cardamom are larger than common cardamom; it is thick, rough, blackish-brown pod filled with black seeds. The tastes are mintier than green cardamom and smell alike a smokier.
Black cardamom is also known by different names such as kravan, brown cardamom, Bengal cardamom, Java cardamom, Siamese cardamom, etc. Black cardamom uses are popularly known for making “biryani” and other savory dishes.
2.Green Cardamom (Elettaria)
These are the main types of cardamom or so called “elaichi” variety, which comes in color green. Green cardamoms are smaller in size and are thin and papery; the green pod is filled with small blackish seeds.
Black Cardamom Indian Names
- Bengali : Badh elach
- Gujarati : Elcha
- Hindi : Badi elaichi
- Kannada : Dodda elakki
- Sanskrit: Brihad ela/ Sthula ela
- Tamil : Peria elam
- Telugu : Tengu elakulu
- Marathi : Velchi
- Tamil : Elakkai
- Malayalam : Elakkai
Cardamom In Other Languages
- English : Black cardamom, Greater cardamom, Nepal cardamom
- French : Cardamome
- German : Kardamom
- Italian : Cardamomo, Cardamone
- Spanish : Cardamomo
- Burmese : Phalazee
- Chinese : Ts’ao-k’ou
- Indonesian : Kapulaga
- Malay : Buah pelaga
- Sinhalese : Enasal
- Thai : kravan
Black cardamom Ayurveda
Black cardamom is an important spice of Ayurveda, which have been uses for many ailements for ages. It has meen used for cough and cold (Kasa), for itching and pruritis (Kandu), urinary tract-related diseases (Vastiroga) for throat and sore throat (Kantaruja) and more.
According to principles of Ayurveda Black cardamom spice are light to digest and absorbs moisture. It is bitter and spicy to taste and tendency to dry up fat deposits in the body.
Black cardamom ayurvedic properties
- Taste (Rasa) : Tikta (Bitter), Katu (Pungent)
- Qualities (Guna) : Ruksha (Dry), Laghu (Light)
- Resultant (Vipaka): Katu (Undergoes Pungent taste after digestion)
- Potency ( Veerya) : Ushna (Hot)
- Dosha (Actions) :Pitta vardaka (increase pitta dosha) and Kaphavata shamaka (reduces kapha and vata dosha),
Cardamom Medicinal Uses
Black Cardamom is widely used in the preparation of several kinds of food items, drinks, medicine, etc. Beside this it is known to contain powerful antioxidants, black cardamom health benefits offer protection against countless health conditions like cancer, blood pressure below are some of the health benefits of black cardamom and Cardamom Medicinal Uses.
1. Ensures gastrointestinal health
Black cardamom is a spice that has its own importance in Ayurveda; it is believed to be a most powerful mucus destroyer. The Black cardamom seeds are very effective when it comes to ensuring a healthy gastrointestinal tract. It is due to its various biological properties in it such as metal chelation, antioxidant, gastric antiallergenic, lipid peroxidation, etc.
The properties in Black cardamom help to stimulate intestinal and gastric glands to secrete essential juices in the body. Besides this, it also regulates juice emission procedure that ultimately helps to control stomach acids. Since black cardamom is gastric antiallergenic in nature, it can contribute relief from abdominal gas.
2. It provides respiratory relief
Black Cardamom is an Indian spice that has its own importance in Ayurveda due to multiple benefits of it. It is a spice that can be a best remedy for the people suffering from respiratory problems; such as Asthma, Pulmonary tuberculosis, Bronchitis, Whooping cough, cough, etc. It is due to its warming effect and antioxidants properties in it helped in reliving cold and cough.
The antioxidant properties in black cardamom help alleviate the mucous membrane, in addition normalizing the mucous flow through the respiratory tract. Simply way to use is by inhaling steam contain cardamom seeds or cardamom essential oil helps in nasal congestive.
3. It Prevent Cancer
Consuming black cardamom can have many health benefits and one benefit among it is that it reduces the causes of cancer. It is very effective due to its antioxidants properties called “3’-Diindolylmethane” (DIM) and “Indole-3-Carbinol” (I3C) in black cardamom.
The antioxidant properties of cardamom, acts as “Anti-Carcinogenic” which help to combat colon, ovarian as well as prostate cancer. The properties of cardamom spice raise the amount of glutathione (an antioxidant) in the body and prevent the generation and growth of cancerous cells. 
4. It maintains cardiovascular health
The other health benefit of Black cardamom is that it can help keep your heart-healthy and fit. It is due to its antioxidant properties, vitamin “C” and the essential mineral potassium that helps safeguard cardiac health. The Vitamin C black cardamoms help to strengthen arteries and prevent the patch arteries with “plaster casts” (atherosclerosis).
Besides this, Vitamin C also prevents coronary artery disease by boosting the body’s level of natural glutathione, a powerful free radical scavenger that protects the arteries. In addition to that it, furthermore, maintains the blood pressure which can be helpful to people with blood pressure. It can also reduce the probabilities of clotting of blood.
5. It Maintains Oral Disorders
Black Cardamoms are also widely known for its oral hygiene and for the prevention of teeth and gum problems. It is a natural treatment of teeth and gum that has been used in Ayurveda for dental problems ever since ancient age. It is good for oral care due to its anti-microbial properties and a good source of calcium and magnesium in it, which are essential for dental health.
In addition, it also has anti-inflammatory properties that help to prevent gums swelling due to oral infection. So to keep stay from oral disorders, eat one cardamom daily after a meal, it will increase saliva flow that helps to cleanse the teeth.
Black Cardamom Side Effects
In most of the cases Black cardamom is found safe to use when taken by mouth. In few cases some people may have black cardamom side effects, but not major, it is generally found in excess of intake below are some of it.
- Respiratory Problems: Due to excess intake of black cardamom some may experience respiratory problems such as difficulty in breathing, shortness of breath tightness in chest etc.
- Skin Problems: People sensitive to cardamom can problems related to skin. The problems such as swelling of the skin, it is mostly found aggravated in the winter season.
- Interactions of drug: It is the most common side effects found in most of the cases. People unknowingly experience as some spices have tendency to react to a few medicines. So people taking medicines such as Anticoagulants, Liver medicines, Antidepressants, Aspirin, Anti-platelet drugs must take advice from your doctor.
- Gallstones: The person with stone must not take cardamom in amounts greater as cardamom spice seed can trigger gallstone colic.
- Hyperactivity: The person suffering from hyper acidity must minimize the use of cardamom as excessive usage can cause hyperactivity and mouth ulcers.
How to use black cardamom: Cardamom starts losing its aroma and flavor as soon as it is ground. So it is better to buy cardamom pods and cook with the whole or crushed or grinds pods during use.