Eleven More Healthy Rewards to Cinnamon
It isn’t necessary to have everything you eat loaded up with cinnamon, but a good shot of cinnamon once a day can do wonders. Personally, I put about a teaspoon of cinnamon in my oatmeal every morning, along with a 1/4 teaspoon of Himalayan Sea Salt (big pink crystals). I’m sure that you can think of many other ways to add this tasty spice to your daily routine. If not, there are cinnamon capsules available in many health stores. I love cinnamon – especially sticky cinnamon rolls.
- Anti-oxidant – With an ORAC value of 267536 μmol TE/100g (USDA 2007) cinnamon is one of the top seven anti-oxidants in the world. The suggestion is that Anti-oxidants reduce the formation of ” Free Radicals ” that cause cancer. This study found Cinnamon has sufficient anti-oxidant properties and makes for improved food palatability. This detailed Indian study (pdf) also found potential anti microbial and antioxidant properties of the volatile oils and oleoresins of cinnamon leaf and bark. But consider anti-oxidants as good for your whole body, repairing damage to virtually all parts of your body from skin to organs.
- Weight Reducer – Cinnamon apparently has the effect of thinning your blood thereby increasing blood circulation. Increased blood flow generally boosts your metabolism which is why it may be helpful in weight loss. This blood thinning property of Cinnamon also helps it in acting as an anti clotting agent especially for those suffering from heart disease. Care must be taken to NOT to Cinnamon with other blood thinning medication. The main ingredient that causes your blood to thin is Coumarin which is present in high doses in Cassia Cinnamon (4%) but not in Ceylon Cinnamon (0.04%). However Coumarin causes liver damage. So taking Cassia Cinnamon for weight loss may end up causing liver damage.This article cites Dr. Greenburg of Tufts University as saying it holds promising possibilities for weight loss.. We take a more in depth look here.
- Massage Therapy – Cinnamon is a well known warming agent. Combined with a carrier oil it is highly effective in relaxing and relieving muscle pain. Some put a few drops in their bath to relax and to sooth tired and aching muscles.
- Anti-Fungal – Got a bad case of athletes foot? Perhaps a toe nail fungus? Cinnamon’s powerful anti fungal properties are the perfect natural alternative to killing the athletes foot fungus. You can use Cinnamon sticks or even better a few drops of powerful Ceylon Cinnamon Leaf Oil (not to exceed 1% cinnamon oil to water) and soak your feet. Usually good results in three days with the oil. Similar results for toe tail fungus. Click here to read our blog post on treating your toenail fungus with Cinnamon.
- Lowering LDL cholesterol & triglycerides – According to a Mayo clinic article the only possible way Cinnamon could lower cholesterol is indirectly via how the body processes sugar and fat. But there is no direct effect on cholesterol. Still another study in Pakistan found Cinnamon reduced triglyceride (23-30%), LDL cholesterol (7-27%), and total cholesterol (12-26%). A review in 2011 found The consumption of cinnamon is associated with a statistically significant decrease in levels of total cholesterol, LDL-C, and triglyceride levels, and an increase in HDL-C (the good cholesterol) levels, but qualified it by saying that applying it to patient care is difficult. Still, worth a try in our book.
- E-coli Fighter/Salmonella – One of the most effective E-coli fighters because of its anti microbial properties. Mix cinnamon oil with hydrogen peroxide and spray your cutting board and kitchen sink especially after you have cut meats. Spray it in your refrigerator. It’s safe and natural. This study found a concentration of 2 microl/ml from cinnamon was enough to inactivate Salmonella Enteritidis, E. coli, and L. innocua in apple and pear juices and 8 and 10 microl/ml from cinnamon for melon juice and tryptone soy broth.
- Tooth Decay and Gum Disease – Again the anti-bacterial properties of Cinnamon play a crucial role in getting rid of harmful bacteria without damaging your teeth or gums. It’s one of the reasons that Cinnamon Oil is often used in chewing gums, mouthwashes, toothpaste and breath mints.
- Nutrients – One teaspoon of Cinnamon Powder (a realistic dose) has 0.33mg (16% DV) Manganese, 0.76 mg (4% DV) Iron, 24.56 mg (2% DV) Calcium. This data was calculated from this site. We have also presented USDA figures with RDA % (see chart below) which we think is more accurate, although we cannot confirm the Manganese levels in Cinnamon from any reliable source. Manganese apparently works as an enzyme activator and plays an important role in building good structure and bone metabolism. According to WebMD manganese is therefore useful for weak bones (osteoporosis), a type of “tired blood” (anemia), and symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS).
- Insect Repellant – The anti microbial qualities of Cinnamon Leaf oil is often used for head lice treatment, black ant control, bed bugs, dust mites, and roaches. It is well known as a defense against mosquitoes’. This WebMD article sites a Taiwanese study which found that it not only kills Mosquito larvae but also acts as a bug repellant. This paper suggests that real Cinnamon Oil as opposed to Cinnamon extract is the best for a broad range anti microbial activity.
- Cold, Sore Throat and Cough – At the first sign (within 5-10 minutes) of sniffles or an itch in your throat take some Cinnamon Tea or Cinnamon stick Tea. It is said to stop an impending illness in its tracks. Again this is related to the anti bacterial properties and warming properties of Cinnamon and its propensity to increase blood flow and thereby improve blood oxygen levels to fight illness. Chinese traditional medicine commonly recommends Cinnamon for phlegm coughs.
- Alzheimer’s Disease – This article cites an Israeli study done at the University of Tel Aviv that found sufficient evidence to conclude that Cinnamon can delay the effects of five aggressive strains of Alzheimer’s inducing genes. Another study also finds that orally administered Cinnamon extract has had good success in correcting Cognitive Impairment in Alzheimer’s Disease in Animal Models.The latest finding indicate that two compounds found in cinnamon — cinnamaldehyde and epicatechin — may be effective in fighting Alzheimer’s. According to a study by Roshni George and Donald Graves in 2013, two scientists at UC Santa Barbara, Cinnamon has been shown to prevent the development of the filamentous “tangles” found in the brain cells that characterize Alzheimer’s.
- PMS – Again because of the high levels of Manganese Cinnamon may be an excellent candidate to mitigate the effects of PMS. According to the University of Maryland web site women who ate 5.6 mg of manganese in their diets each day had fewer mood swings and cramps compared to those who ate only 1 mg of manganese. These results suggest that a manganese rich diet may help reduce symptoms of PMS. Another clinical study found that 46 patients with PMS had significantly lower amounts of calcium, chromium, copper, and manganese in their blood. You should not consume more than 11 mg of Manganese per day (about 12 cinnamon sticks) according NYU. FDA guidelines establishes a daily value of 2mg (about 2 Cinnamon sticks).
- Depression/Reduced irritability/Mood Enhancer
Ancient folklore says the smell of Cinnamon is the best cure for the winter blues. The only scientific evidence we can find to support this theory is this study by Dr. Bryan Raudenbush, Director of Undergraduate Research and associate professor of psychology at Wheeling Jesuit University in Wheeling, WV. The study found that the scent of Cinnamon reduced driver irritability.But Cinnamon may be an excellent cure for depression in a more round about way. There is some evidence that certain types of gut bacteria may make you more susceptible to depression. Cinnamon as a powerful stomach anti bacterial may help you remove the bad bacteria. However since Cinnamon removes both bad and good bacteria from your stomach you would be advised to repopulate your body with good bacteria by drinking a good probiotic or eating fermented food after taking Cinnamon. Read our blog post on gut health here.
Okay now, here’s the test. How many ways will adding cinnamon to your daily routine, improve your life?
Did you check out my other page at Gluten Free Delicious Cinnamon Rolls?
Source: Cinnamon Vogue
Image Source: Josefine Stenudd