There are already plenty of things that we like about cinnamon without knowing how good it is for our bodies. It smells great, it tastes delicious and you can put cinnamon on anything ranging from apples and cereal to muffins and pita bread. Cinnamon is an extremely common spice that can be found in just about every house, but people typically only have it around for the taste.
Cinnamon has been around for thousands of years, and its original source is unknown because of how long it has been in use. It has been a daily use for some people ever since, and there are tons of great benefits that come along with cinnamon. Let’s take a look at what makes cinnamon such a wonderful spice, and why should be using it more than you already do now.
Good For the Heart
Just ingesting one gram of cinnamon per day can be beneficial to your heart health, which might come as a surprise. Heart disease is all too common these days, and cinnamon is something that’s easy to incorporate to your diet that would help you prevent heart disease. It has been shown in studies that a dosage of cinnamon can reduce your bad cholesterol and triglycerides while increasing the good cholesterol.
Blood pressure is another big part of heart health, and early studies have shown positive benefits. Though there needs to be more human testing when it comes to blood pressure, animals that have ingested a regular dosage of cinnamon have shown healthier blood pressure levels. While your mouth thanks you for the taste, your heart will thank you for the health boost.
Mining for Minerals
Upon first glance, cinnamon doesn’t seem like a spice that would be filled with vitamins and nutrients. However, a closer look shows that cinnamon is packed with them. One ounce of cinnamon will give you nearly 60 percent of the daily recommended dietary fiber that you need. Meanwhile, you are getting nearly 30 percent of your daily calcium and about 250 percent of your daily manganese.
Most of us know how beneficial calcium can be for your bones (since we are taught at a young age), but what about manganese? Manganese is also vital for bone health to prevent osteoporosis, while also fighting free radicals in your body. Lastly, manganese can help those that suffer from epilepsy.
So what else can you find in cinnamon? There is a significant amount of iron and vitamin E (more than 10 percent of your daily recommendation). You can also find small amounts of vitamin E, vitamin A, vitamin C, magnesium, potassium, copper and zinc. Plenty of beneficial amino acids are also found in cinnamon, making it an all-around great spice.
One reason that people don’t think of cinnamon as being particularly healthy is because it is often combined with sugar. If you keep the sugar away from your cinnamon, you will see a lot of benefits for your blood sugar. Cinnamon has been found to help lower blood sugar by decreasing your body’s glucose ingestion and can keep your body at a healthy insulin level since it acts as an insulin impersonator.
For those that have diabetes, cinnamon is often suggested by doctors for your daily diet to help regulate blood sugar. It doesn’t take much, either, with a maximum of six grams per day. Your body’s more efficient insulin resistance will also help you lose weight, and lowering your cholesterol helps with diabetes, as well.
Cinnamon is not only good for your heart and cardiovascular system, but also for the brain. It has been shown that symptoms of Alzheimer’s and other neurological disorders can be treated with regular cinnamon intake. Cinnamon helps to boost proteins that protect your brain cell from further damage, slowing down the effects of these devastating diseases.
There are many antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of cinnamon, which will also aid in brain health (as well as the rest of your organs). Though studies are still being conducted on whether or not cinnamon can prevent neurological diseases remains to be seen. However, the early studies have shown a lot of promise.
Cancer is one of the most lethal and common diseases known, and there is unfortunately no cure as of now. If you want to prevent getting cancer, cinnamon can help due to its many different properties. Cinnamon has been shown in early studies to be able to kill certain cancer cells, stopping the growth altogether.
While it’s too early to say that cinnamon is the cure for cancer, it has been helpful for many animals in treatment. There might be a day when it becomes more common than other forms of cancer that can leave the body devastated, but we have to wait. For now, it isn’t negative to add to your diet to prevent cancer.
Call the Medic
There are plenty of everyday medicinal uses that cinnamon can provide us with, as well. Cinnamon has plenty of antioxidants, and oil extracts from cinnamon have been shown to fight different infections that were caused by bacteria (which also results in fresher breath). In the long run, these antioxidants will help you prevent chronic inflammatory diseases.
Your immune system will get a huge boost, and cinnamon has even been found to help prevent or treat HIV. Allergies, infections and other germ-related problems can be prevented or reduced thanks to cinnamon, and it also helps you on the outside. Direct contact with cinnamon on your skin has been shown to slow the aging process while treating skin conditions such as acne and rosacea. It will also leave you smelling pretty good.
Summing it Up
There are different types of cinnamon, with the one you find in stores (with Cassia) being more common. The other type is pure cinnamon, known as Ceylon. If you want the health benefits without having to worry about how much you can take in, then you want to Ceylon (or verum) type of cinnamon. It might be more expensive or harder to find, but it will be worth it in the long run.
Doctors recommend that you should be taking six grams of cinnamon per day for a total of six weeks before taking a break to see all of the benefits. This, of course, is with the “true” type of cinnamon that you’ll have to search around for. Just make sure not to take too much cinnamon at once, as humans can only take so much. Also, speak with your doctor to make sure that it won’t interfere with medication.
The best part is that cinnamon can be added to just about any food, and you can even use it as a natural food preserver. You don’t have to take “the cinnamon challenge” and ingest a pure spoonful on a daily basis that will leave you in a coughing fit. Just be smart about how much you’re taking and keep track, and the benefits will be fantastic.