Green cardamom (Elettaria cardamomum), also known as the Queen of Spices, belongs to the ginger (Zingiberaceae) family. The ground dried fruit of green cardamom contains essential oils that have shown anti-inflammatory effects in vitro. In human trials, green cardamom demonstrated antioxidant effects in patients with ischemic heart disease and hypertension but no significant antioxidant or anti-inflammatory effects in patients with type 2 diabetes.  

 In a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind trial conducted in Iran, researchers evaluated the effects of green cardamom supplementation on inflammation and oxidative stress in pre-diabetic women. A total of 80 overweight women with hyperlipidemia and prediabetes were randomized to take green cardamom capsules or placebo for 8 weeks. The green cardamom was dosed at 3.0 grams per day (1.0 gram 3 times per day), based on protocols from previous clinical trials.  

After adjusting for participant-reported dietary changes during the study, the participants in the cardamom group showed significantly lower levels of high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP; p=.02), hs-CRP:IL-6 ratio (p=.008), and malondialdehyde (MDA; p=.009). Cardamom showed no significant influence on protein carbonyl (PC), total antioxidant capacity (TAC), superoxide dismutase (SOD), or glutathione reductase (GR) levels.  

Although this study demonstrated improvements in some parameters of inflammation and oxidative stress in women with pre-diabetes, it did not demonstrate profound effects on all markers evaluated. The researchers suggest that a higher dosage or longer duration of intervention may be needed to observe clinically meaningful results of green cardamom in the pre-diabetic population.  


Kazemi S, Yaghooblou F, Siassi F et al. Cardamom supplementation improves inflammatory and oxidative stress biomarkers in hyperlipidemic, overweight, and obese pre-diabetic women: a randomized double-blind clinical trial. J Sci Food Agric. 2017;97 (15):5296-5301. 

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