Cardamom Hydrosol

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Cardamom, I wonder what should I write about this wonderful herb of nature. Okay let me put it this way that whenver you would pass any cafe or eat-joint, the strong smell that attracts you towards the food is nothing when compared to the smell of this wonderful herb which is a part of myriad dishes and beverages.

Cardamom hydrosol has a sweet, spicy scent that can provide a refreshing and uplifting effect. It is especially beneficial for dry and mature skin. As a massage hydrosol or diluted in the bath, cardamom oil has been prescribed by aromatherapists to assist with the digestive system and as a general tonic.

Cardamom grows as an herbaceous perennial plant resembling reed canary grass. It belongs to the family of ginger (characterized by the presence of rhizomes) and grows at an average altitude in moist tropical forests. It stands among the most expensive spices of all, with saffron and vanilla, and exists in various types (white, black and green), green cardamom being the most in demand.

Cardamom is widely used in Asia (notably in China and India) and highly appreciated in Great Britain as well as in Scandinavia. It enters in the preparation of the increasingly popular chai tea and is used to flavor the spice-loaf.This aromatic has been used for numerous centuries. During Antiquity, it was burned for the aroma, included in perfumes, consumed as an aromatic and used for its therapeutic properties (digestive, disinfectant and soothing). Interestingly, in the Middle Age, cardamom enters in the preparation of the famous fortified red wine Hypocras, served as an appetizer, popular among very important kings, of which Louis XIV.

The Egyptians were big fans of cardamom oil. They used cardamom to whiten their teeth and the oil was used in perfumes and for incense in religious ceremonies. When the Romans eat too much they drank cardamom to aid digestion, and the Arabs mixed it in their coffee to enhance the aroma and flavor of the brew. The Chinese use cardamom for cooking, but cardamom and India have enjoyed a rich history because the Indians saw the export value in this incredible herb and the oil it produced.

Cardamom is the second most expensive spice in the world. It’s right behind saffron so there are many imitators in the spice market that masquerade as the real cardamom, which actually comes from the Elettaria cardamomum plant. There are two varieties of that Indian plant -

  • Malabar
  • Mysore

Mysore contains high levels of limonene and cineol so it is much more aromatic than the Malabar variety.

Have a look at our reference links now -

  1. Floral Waters by Wise Geek
  2. Hydro-sols by Natural Home Spa
  3. Floral Flowers by Chemistry

Parsley Seed Hydrosol

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The hydrosol that we’ll be talking about here is a liquid wonder (as most people refer to it), it has long been used a wonderful solution for a lot of health problems. The hydrosol is quite amazing when it comes to healing and curing.

The health benefits of Parsley Essential Oil can be attributed to its properties like anti microbial, anti rheumatic & anti arthritic, anti septic, astringent, carminative, circulatory, detoxifier, digestive, diuretic, depurative, emenagogue, febrifuge, hypotensive, laxative, stimulant, stomachic and uterine.

Has anyone read that world famous comic book “Adventures of Asterix and Obelix” by Uderzo and Gossinni? You must have! It presents a scenario of Rome and some Gaul villages during the reign of Julius Caesar. In that book, every now and then you will find Obelix gobbling down those roasted wholesome wild boars garnished and decorated with parsley leaves (its different that he uses those parsley branches for cleaning his ears).

You may think that I must be kidding if I say that this comic book proves that parsley was in use since those times. Okay! The comic may not be a testimony of what I said, but it is true that parsley is one of the oldest spices known. It has been and still is, in use, both as seeds and fresh leaves, particularly for garnishing meat, and other food stuffs too, as well as for decorating them. It has a refreshing and appetizing herbaceous flavour which comes from its essential oils. This essential oil is derived from its dried seeds by steam distillation and contains apiole, myristicin, pinene and tetramethoxyally benzene as its chief components. By the way, the botanical name of Parsley is Petroselinum Sativum.

This herb, apart from being so widely used as a spice or condiment, has a lot of medicinal properties to offer, which again, come from its essential oil. They are as under.

  • Anti Microbial: Where there are microbes, there are infections and diseases, and where there is Parsley Essential Oil, there are no microbes. Why? Because this oil has anti microbial properties. That is, this oil has certain components which can kill microbes and inhibit their growth. So, it can effectively give protection against infections.
  • Anti Rheumatic & Anti Arthritic: Rheumatism and arthritis are the two diseases which are caused due to two main reasons, namely, accumulation of uric acid in the muscles and in the joints and, obstructed blood circulation. The Essential Oil of Parsley has certain properties which can help you out with both of these reasons. First of all, it is a detoxifier and depurative which again is due to the diuretic and stimulant properties it possesses. While a detoxifier speeds up removal of toxins from the body, a depurative purifies or refreshes blood. Now, being a diuretic, it increases urination, and as we all know, the toxic and unwanted substances such as excess water, salts and uric acid etc. are removed through urine. Then, being a stimulant, it stimulates flow of blood or increases circulation. This helps in two ways. First, it warms up the body and second, it does not let uric acid accumulate at a particular place, giving relief from pain of arthritis & gout.
  • Anti Septic: Wounds and certain soft and sensitive internal organs go septic due to infection by microbes. The danger is more when the wound is from dirty or rusty iron objects. Septic brings pain accompanied by cramp, convulsions and even hydrophobia (if it catches tetanus). Its cure lays in eliminating microbes and inhibiting their growth in the affected area and this is exactly what Parsley Oil does. It stops microbes from multiplying and kills them.

Have a look at our reference links now -

  1. Floral Waters by Wise Geek
  2. Hydro-sols by Natural Home Spa
  3. Floral Flowers by Chemistry

Mace Hydrosol

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Mace essential hydrosol is a wonderful solution and a complete package for fighting various diseases and infections. The hydrosol is often used for culinary purposes, infact, it is a popular spice in India and is a part of many Indian delicacies.

The name is derived from a medieval word for ‘nut,’ meaning ‘suitable for an ointment.’ The tree is a small evergreen, not more than 40 feet in height, with smooth, greyish-brown bark, green on the younger branches.

The alternate leaves are oblong-ovate, acute, entire, smooth, and dark-green. The flowers are very small and unisexual. The fruits, smooth and yellow, resemble a pear grooved by a longitudinal furrow and contain a single erect seed about 1 1/4 inch long, the nucleus being the wrinkled ‘nutmeg,’ and the fleshy, irregular covering, scarlet when fresh and drying yellow and brittle, the ‘mace.’

Mace consists of the vein-like threads that cover the dried fruit, while nutmeg is the kernel inside the seed, rather like the kernel inside a peach pit. Mace threads, or blades, are chopped or ground and the nutmeg kernel is ground or grated. Both are traditional flavorings for sweets including custards, cakes, desserts, and savory dishes, especially fish, spinach, pasta and quiche.

Confusion created by two spices from a single fruit is apparently longstanding: spice lore tells the tale of an English merchant who visited a Ceylon nutmeg plantation and, after learning that mace was worth more than nutmeg, declared, “We must raise less nutmegs and more mace.”

Some spice historians speculate that mace may not have been considered a spice until long after nutmeg became popular, since it is not included in early European descriptions of spice use from 3rd and 4th centuries. However, cooking with nutmeg in India extends to ancient times.

Arab traders introduced nutmeg to the West some time in the 6th century. It eventually became as valuable as gold and was among the spices that prompted the European exploration of the world.

In the Middle Ages, Europeans who could afford spices especially used nutmeg to flavour -

  • Pudding
  • Beverages
  • Spiced wine

A Chaucer poem recommends keeping nutmegs on hand to put in ale. Nutmeg flavoring in beverages continues today with Coca Cola, which reportedly includes it in its secret recipe.

An inferior Mace is obtained from the long nutmeg, dark and very brittle and lacking the fragrant odour and aromatic taste of the official variety.The medicinal properties resemble those of nutmeg, but it is principally used as a condiment.

Have a look at our reference links now -

  1. Floral Waters by Wise Geek
  2. Hydro-sols by Natural Home Spa
  3. Floral Flowers by Chemistry

Ginger Root Hydrosol

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Well, who doesnt know about the greatly illustrious herb, ginger. The herb is a a part of the staple diet of many Asians, owe it too the many therapeutic and medicinal qualities of it that it made a place for itself long back in the world market. The hydrosol obtained from it is possibly the best floral water and actually a miraculous strong liquid.

The health benefits of ginger root hydrosol can be attributed to its digestive, carminative, expectorant, antiseptic, analgesic, anti inflammatory, stimulating and aphrodisiac properties. These benefits of ginger oil include its ability to treat stomach problems, nausea, heart strokes, indigestion, inflammations, respiratory problems, menstrual disorders, etc.

Ginger is a commonly used spice, which has originated in India. The spice is very common in India (known as adrak in Hindi) and China and is now used all over the world. It forms an integral part of many Asian cuisines due to its digestive properties. It is especially helpful in digesting food items such as meat, and poultry and is added while cooking meat as it softens the meat. Ginger root and ginger oil are also used as preservative and flavoring agent.

Ginger oil is obtained from the root of the herb Zingiber Officinale. The peculiar hot taste and pungent taste of ginger can be attributed to the presence of an acrid compound called Gingerol. Most of the health benefits of ginger are due to Gingerol.

The health benefits of ginger root oil include the following:

  • Stomach: Ginger root and ginger oil is often used for stomach upsets. It is one of the best remedies for indigestion, stomach ache, dyspepsia, colic, spasms, diarrhea, flatulence and other stomach and bowel related problems. Ginger or ginger oil is often added in numerous food preparations, especially in India, as it helps in improving digestion. Ginger tea is also used for relieving stomach problems. Further, it increases the appetite of a person.
  • Food poisoning: Ginger is antiseptic and carminative. As a result, it can be used for treating food poisoning. It is also used for treating intestinal infections and bacterial dysentery.
  • Nausea and Vomiting: Research has proved that ginger root and its oil is also effective against nausea, motion sickness and vomiting. Usage of ginger may result in reduction in pregnancy related vomiting as well in women.
  • Heart Problems: It is strongly believed in China that ginger boosts and strengthens your heart. Many people use ginger oil as a measure to prevent as well as cure heart diseases. Preliminary research has indicated that ginger may be helpful in reduction of cholesterol levels and prevention of blood clotting. With reduced cholesterol levels and blood clotting the chances of blockage of blood vessels decrease thereby reducing incidences of heart strokes.

Go through our reference links now -

  1. Floral Waters by Wise Geek
  2. Hydrosols by Natural Home Spa
  3. Floral Flowers by Chemistry

Garlic Hydrosol

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I dont need to say much about this king of spices I know, but cannot defy the custom. Back in the days when ‘garlic bread’ did not exist, garlic was always a p[art of some craved delicacies of the Asian region of the world, and actually not only the Asian region but quite a lot many parts of the world. Then came to light the amazing health benefits of this herb, besides the strong taste and pungent smell of this hydrosol. Soon, it became a celebrated herb.

Garlic, Latin name Allium sativum, belongs to the onion family Alliaceae including shallots, and leek. Garlic has been used throughout recorded history for both medicinal and culinary purposes. The garlic bulb is divided into sections called cloves.

Elephant garlic or Russian garlic is a variant of the species leek and not considered a true garlic. It has a -

  • tall
  • solid

flowering stalk and its leaves are -

  • broad
  • flat

much like those of the leek, but forms a bulb consisting of very large, garlic like cloves.

One of the variations of garlic is garlic oil. Garlic oil has been produced for the last 80 years. It is manufactured by marinating chopped and crushed garlic in vegetable oil for at least 24 hours. The leftover pieces of garlic are then removed from the remaining liquid. The other method of making garlic oil is by subjecting crushed or chopped garlic to steam distillation and taking out the natural oil. Taking garlic-oil capsules will help you avoid the infamous “garlic breath,” which is an added benefit.

Both variants of oil have their own specific natural benefits. Garlic oil that is derived from the steam-distillation method contains DADS and DATs (antioxidant sulphides). The sulphides in this oil have some antibiotic properties, fight cancer and strengthen the immune system. These sulphides are distributed throughout the body by the lymphatic system.

Garlic oil derived from the marination method does not contain as many DADS and DATs as steam-distilled oil, but does have high amounts of antibiotic properties as well as a strong ability to ward off the formation of blood clots. This is due to the chemical compound ajoene, which is commercially obtained only through garlic oil made by marination. This type of oil also has circulatory-system benefits in addition to helping the heart.

Garlic oil has the ability to lower cholesterol, and helps prevent the development of tumors due to allyl sulfur. It is especially effective against the development of prostate and stomach cancers. The Iowa Women’s Health Study monitored 41,000 women and their garlic consumption. Women who took garlic consistently were found to have a 35-percent lower chance of getting colon cancer.

Go through our reference links now -

  1. Floral Waters by Wise Geek
  2. Hydrosols by Natural Home Spa
  3. Floral Flowers by Chemistry