The health benefits from cinnamon are said to contain medicinal properties that have been widely used for the treatment and prevention of certain diseases and ailments for over a thousand years.
Yes, this traditional medicine is really good for the body, especially in the management of blood sugar, to relieve digestive discomfort, reduce blood pressure, and more!
These health benefits are backed up by scientific research, so if you want to know what its health benefits are, read on.
What is Cinnamon?
In history, cinnamon was traded as currency in different parts of the world.
It is not only used as a household spice, but as one of the popular spices gifted to kings, especially in ancient Egypt.
Cinnamon comes in two common types: the first is Ceylon cinnamon, which they call “true cinnamon”, while the other is called cinnamomum cassia, which people commonly use today.
Most people are only familiar with cinnamon as a popular ingredient for cooking and baking.
But besides adding spice to savory dishes, cinnamon has many positive effects on the body.
Cinnamon is made by peeling the inner bark of a small evergreen tree, scientifically known as Cinnamomum verum.
It is arranged under the scorching sun to curl up in rolls, hence the term cinnamon sticks.
These sticks can be ground to form a cinnamon powder.
Today, cinnamon can be purchased in different forms.
Health Benefits of Cinnamon
Curious about the health benefits of cinnamon? Check out the following:
1. Anti-viral, Antifungal and Antimicrobial Propeties
Did you know that cinnamon also contains many medicinal properties?
In fact, this popular spice has been used to fight bacteria, fungi, and viruses dating back to ancient China.
The inner bark of evergreen tea contains essential oils called cinnamaldehyde, which also give it its distinct flavor and smell.
This essential oil contains the antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties of cinnamon.
2. Anti-inflammatory Properties and Antioxidant Activity
Some household spices can be good alternative medicine for disease prevention and protection.
Some of these pathogenic bacteria can be found in certain spices, fruits, vegetables, and herbs.
Fortunately, cinnamon contains large amounts of powerful antioxidants, called polyphenols, which can protect the body against these diseases.
In addition to that, it also has anti-inflammatory properties that help fight infections.
3. Prebiotic Properties – Benefits of Cinnamon
Cinnamon also contains prebiotic properties which provide many benefits, such as promoting the growth of good bacteria while suppressing the bad (pathogenic bacteria).
Regularly including cinnamon in your diet can also help improve your digestive tract over time.
In addition to this, cinnamon also contains calcium, fiber, and manganese.
4. Reduces Blood Pressure
Some studies suggest that consuming cinnamon can help manage high blood pressure.
Although the result of this study gives hope to patients diagnosed with high blood pressure, more evidence is needed to confirm it.
5. Lowers Blood Sugar and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
Some studies also suggest that cinnamon has the ability to manage blood sugar levels in the body.
It is therefore perfect for diabetic patients with insulin sensitivity and those at risk of having type 2 diabetes.
While there is no concrete evidence for this yet and more studies are still needed, some medical professionals recommend that a small amount of cinnamon in your diet doesn’t hurt.
6. Relieves Digestive Discomfort
As a spice containing antibacterial properties and anti-inflammatory effects, cinnamon has been used especially in Western and Eastern medicine as an alternative medicine for gastrointestinal problems.
Since ancient times, cinnamon bark oil has been used to treat digestive imbalances, metabolic syndrome, irritable bowel syndrome and gas.
Its heat is believed to improve oxygen levels and blood circulation, which are crucial for the prevention of certain diseases and conditions.
To use cinnamon as an alternative medicine for digestive comfort, simply take ground cinnamon and mix it with your hot drink or make your own cinnamon tea.
7. May Have Beneficial Effects on Neurodegenerative Diseases
Some studies suggest that cinnamon is also a good herbal alternative medicine for neurodegenerative diseases.
A condition characterized by a progressive loss of the function or structure of brain cells, which is commonly found in people with Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease.
According to the study, cinnamon contains two compounds responsible for inhibiting the build-up of proteins in the brain, one of the factors responsible for Alzheimer’s disease.
As for Parkinson’s disease, cinnamon has been shown to protect neurons in the brain by improving its cognitive function, motor function and normalizing its neurotransmitter levels.
However, as there is no concrete evidence yet, more studies are still needed.
8. May Cut the Risk of Cardiovascular Disease
There have also been studies correlating cinnamon with a reduced risk of heart disease.
Since heart problems are prevalent in society, the result of this study brought so much hope to the group of people affected or at risk of having it.
According to the study, consuming grams of cinnamon or half a teaspoon of cinnamon per day could improve the blood sugar levels of diabetic patients and reduce their “bad” LDL cholesterol while keeping the “good” HDL cholesterol stable.
Just recently, some clinical trials suggest that consuming 120 mg of cinnamon per day may increase “good” cholesterol levels in the body.
9. May Protect Against Cancer
If there is one disease that most people around the world dread, it would be cancer.
Cancer is characterized by the uncontrolled growth of cells in the body.
The good news is, some studies suggest the potential use of cinnamon in the treatment and prevention of cancer.
The study was conducted in mice with colon cancer, and the result showed that cinnamon contains a powerful activator capable of detoxifying enzymes in the colon, thereby inhibiting the growth of cancer cells and free radicals.
While the evidence is not yet clear at this time, particularly that it has been done only through animal studies, and more studies are needed, the evidence is nonetheless good news for anyone with cancer.
There is no doubt that cinnamon is a powerful spice that has a variety of uses.
Today, there are varieties of cinnamon you can buy at grocery stores, even cinnamon supplements are now available.
But before regular cinnamon consumption, make sure to consult your physician first for any possible side effects.
So whether you use it for the treatment or prevention of certain diseases, the bottom line is that cinnamon is simply both important and valuable.