Research: Cardamom may help you lose weight


Cardamom could assist with your weight loss plans



Cardamon is one of the more expensive spices in your spice cabinet.  As an Osteopathic physician, I am trained to investigate and approach suggestions from my patients with an open mind.  We are trained to take a holistic approach to any treatments we use.  Over the years, I have had many of my patients recommend spices as a means to treat many common ailments.  Most of them lack any evidence but seem harmless, so I tend to avoid being dismissive while explaining that I could not find any evidence to support their use.  Cardamon is one that appears to have some evidence to support its use for weight loss.  

Cardamon is a relative of cinnamon.  It has a slight diuretic effect[1].  Excess fluid accumulation in body cells can lead to weight gain but it is temporary.  Since cardamom has a slight diuretic effect, it can help eliminate water retention by increasing urine output.  Does this explain the weight loss effect?  No, but diuresis is part of it.  Cardamon also works to increase gut motility which might affect nutrient absorption.  

Cardamom also appears to reduce fat accumulation in the abdominal region[2],[3],[4],[5].  Central obesity is a significant risk for multiple diseases.  Central obesity increases your risk of various metabolic problems, including metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular problems.  This research indicates that cardamom powder taken as a supplement may help prevent this abdominal fat deposition.  The mechanism appears to be through improvement in glucose intolerance, which is the hallmark of metabolic syndrome.  Cardamon The best part is cardamon seems to have no significant side effects.  

The bottom line: Cardamon might help you with weight loss as a diuretic and reduce the effects of metabolic syndrome.   It will only work if you add it to a healthy portion-controlled diet and habits.  It is easy to add to your diet by adding it to foods and drinks. You will like the flavor.  It goes especially well with tea or coffee, so add a pinch and enjoy the flavor.



A. Gilani, Q. Jabeen, A. Khan, and A. Shah, “Gut modulatory, blood pressure lowering, diuretic and sedative activities of cardamom.,” J Ethnopharmacol, vol. 115, no. 3, pp. 463–72, Feb. 2008. [PubMed]
M. Rahman et al., “Cardamom powder supplementation prevents obesity, improves glucose intolerance, inflammation and oxidative stress in liver of high carbohydrate high fat diet induced obese rats.,” Lipids Health Dis, vol. 16, no. 1, p. 151, Aug. 2017. [PubMed]
M. Bhaswant, H. Poudyal, M. Mathai, L. Ward, P. Mouatt, and L. Brown, “Green and Black Cardamom in a Diet-Induced Rat Model of Metabolic Syndrome,” Nutrients, vol. 7, no. 9, pp. 7691–7707, Sep. 2015. [PMC]
M. Daneshi-Maskooni et al., “The effects of green cardamom on blood glucose indices, lipids, inflammatory factors, paraxonase-1, sirtuin-1, and irisin in patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease and obesity: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial.,” Trials, vol. 18, no. 1, p. 260, Jun. 2017. [PubMed]
S. Kazemi 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, vol. 97, no. 15, pp. 5296–5301, Dec. 2017. [PubMed]
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About the Author

I am a family physician who has served in the US Army. In 2016, I found myself overweight, out of shape, and unhealthy, so I made a change to improve my health. This blog is the chronology of my path to better health and what I have learned along the way.

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