Cinnamon is a well-known spice since ancient times. It originated from Srilanka and India. The scientific name is Cinnamomum Zeylanicum. It was once a very expensive spice – costlier than silver. Apart from its taste and aroma, it is considered a wonder spice for good health. The benefits of cinnamon can be attributed to its antibacterial, antifungal, antimicrobial, astringent, and anti-clotting properties. Cinnamon is a great source of minerals like manganese, iron, and calcium. It is also high in fibre.
Cinnamon benefits for cholesterol
Cinnamon lowers cholesterol. The cinnamaldehyde in cinnamon helps prevent the unwanted clumping of blood platelets. It aids the circulation of blood and significantly reduces the chances of getting a heart attack due to its blood-thinning property.
Cinnamon benefits for Diabetes
It has a regulatory effect on blood sugar and helps in controlling Type II Diabetes. Cinnamon is said to slow the rate at which the stomach empties after meals, reducing the rise in blood sugar after eating. It helps people with type 2 diabetes improve their ability to respond to insulin, thus normalizing their blood sugar levels.
Cinnamon benefits for cancer
It reduces the proliferation of leukemia and lymphoma cancer cells. Studies have shown that the flavonoids found in cinnamon effects leukemia and lymphoma cells. Bile salts damage the colon cells in the body. Calcium and fibre bind to the bile salts and help remove them from the body, thus reducing the risk of colon cancer.
Cinnamon benefits for Arthritis
Taken with honey, every morning before breakfast leads to considerable relief in arthritis. Cinnamon has powerful analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and pain-relieving properties. It decreases the cytokines which are linked to arthritic pain and gives relief from pain and inflammation in rheumatoid and osteoarthritis. It also helps manage joint pain. Cinnamon is a natural vasodilator and hence can treat muscle spasms, sore muscles, joint pains, and other inflammatory issues.
Cinnamon benefits for the brain
Consuming Cinnamon daily may be beneficial for neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. It affects the levels of a protein that protects the cells of the brain from oxidative damage, which helps improve motor activities and also protects the brain cells from further damage.
Research has proved that the scent of cinnamon has the ability to boost brain activity. Just inhaling it is said to help the brain.
Cinnamon health benefits for digestion
The cinnamon powder when used regularly can be very effective in gastrointestinal diseases like indigestion, flatulence, abdominal pain, Diarrhoea, and IBS. It is a natural digestive and adding it to your food daily helps to remove toxins from the body, improves absorption of nutrients, promotes digestion, and also helps to reduce fat in the belly.
Cinnamon health benefits for the skin
Cinnamon has antibacterial property and anti-inflammatory properties which helps to control acne by inhibiting the growth of acne-causing bacteria and helps reduce the pain acne causes. Cinnamon also has antifungal properties, thus lowering the risk of skin infections. The antioxidant property in cinnamon reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles on aging skin. Cinnamon is especially effective on oily skin. It clears the skin’s pores and exfoliates the skin. Cinnamon oil helps to increase the production of collagen and elastin, which helps to treat the signs of aging.
How to use cinnamon for skin and face
- 1 tsp of cinnamon powder
- 2 tsp of honey
Mix together the cinnamon and honey and apply it to the face. Apply on pimples and acne. Wash it with water after 15 minutes. It can also be kept overnight if you are comfortable with it. But start with 10-15 minutes, and then keep for more time.
Cinnamon benefits for gums and teeth
Cinnamon is a strong anti-microbial agent, which is why it is used often in various oral products. In addition to restricting the spread of infectious microbes within the oral cavities, it also promotes the growth of good probiotic bacteria. Cinnamon helps to cleanse the tooth, prevent bad breath, cavities, and tooth decay. Oil pulling is a great way to add cinnamon to your oral routine. Add 2 drops of cinnamon oil to coconut oil and try oil pulling. Click here to know more about oil pulling
Health benefits of honey and cinnamon
Honey and Cinnamon together are effective in many cases. Honey is a positive catalyst and accelerates the absorption of herbs which is being administered.
- It is consumed for bladder infections. It destroys the germs in the gall bladder.
- It clears stomach ulcers, relieves acidity and gas in the stomach, and digests heaviest of meals.
- It cures toothache. You can avoid bad breath by gargling with honey and cinnamon powder mixed in hot water, first thing in the morning.
- It is taken as an antidote for infertility.
- Cinnamon is used to cure flu, colds, sore throat and congestion.
- It is also effective for skin infections and yeast infections.
- It helps lower serum creatinine.
- The mix of honey and cinnamon powder is used to heal wounds.
How to incorporate cinnamon in daily life
To get the most benefits from cinnamon, you can have it in the form of tea, cinnamon milk, or just cinnamon water. You can also just mix a pinch of cinnamon powder with honey and have it twice a day.
Cinnamon tea has a calming effect on the body. It also helps to control sugar levels after meals. Cinnamon tea is one of the best ways to incorporate it into our daily diet, as it helps and supports digestion by improving metabolism.
How to make cinnamon tea
- One and a half cups of water
- 2 inches of whole Cinnamon bark.
- 2 tsps of honey
- 1 tsp ginger juice
Add the water and cinnamon to the pan and boil on a medium flame. Once the water comes to a boil, switch off the stove, cover, and let it steep for 10 minutes. Strain the liquid. Add the ginger and honey to it. You can also squeeze ½ a lemon into it if you want to. This tea helps to reduce stress, is good for heart health, digestion and also helps to lose weight. It also helps to cure a cold, cough, congestion, and sore throat.
- 1 cup milk
- 1/8 tsp of cinnamon powder
Boil the milk in a pan. Add the cinnamon to it and stir till the cinnamon dissolves in the milk. Drink this milk warm. This is very good for insomnia if taken just before bed. It is also good for arthritic pain.
Take a cup of lukewarm water. Add the cinnamon powder to it. Squeeze the juice of half a lime into it. Add honey and mix well. This cinnamon water is said to help lose weight if taken daily.
Side Effects and Precautions while taking cinnamon
Cinnamon sticks or powder may decrease the platelet count in the blood and increase the risk of bleeding. You should monitor platelet count if taking anticoagulant or antiplatelet drugs.
Cinnamon may lower blood glucose levels. So if you taking anti-diabetic drugs, you should monitor the blood glucose level.
Cinnamon may lower blood pressure. So it is generally advisable to monitor the blood pressure regularly while taking Cinnamon along with anti-hypertensive drugs.
If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, please consult your doctor before taking cinnamon supplements.
Taking too much cinnamon may lead to Diarrhea, vomiting, dizziness, and drowsiness. Cinnamon oil should be used with caution. This is so especially in the case of hypersensitive skin and oily skin. Cinnamon oil in high doses can lead to skin rashes, swelling of the tongue, swelling, and sores in the mouth.