In recent years, cinnamon is more and more often, called one of the healthiest foods. Many international, as well as national media, have pointed out the importance of this spice. We assume that you already know the following ‘properties’ of cinnamon:
- Can help in the treatment of type 2 diabetes
- can lower bad cholesterol
- has antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral effect
- Can help in the treatment of the symptoms of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease
- has an anticarcinogenic effect
- has anti-inflammatory properties
- helps in the treatment of polycystic ovaries
However, have you now asked yourself how a single spice, can have such a wide range of effects?
Most of the impressive properties of cinnamon come mostly from only one substance, cinnamaldehyde. Due to this aromatic substance, the cinnamon also gets its antibacterial effect is. However, this is not all.
The high concentration of antioxidants in cinnamon can protect the organism from free radicals, have an anti-inflammatory effect, as well as reduce the risk of cancer. The combination of cinnamaldehyde, antioxidants and fiber causes an incredibly positive effect on the human body.
Cinnamon in the diet
Although cinnamon has many impressive beneficial properties, it should not be consumed in excessive quantities, as this can have a toxic effect at high doses. Nevertheless, we recommend adding cinnamon in small quantities to your tea, coffee, stewed fruit, porridge, etc.. And this is not only because of the health aspect, but also because of the aroma and fragrance.
Which type of cinnamon to consume?
Not all cinnamon is made the same. Therefore, you should also pay attention to which one you buy.
Almost any cinnamon in the supermarket is actually a ‘cousin’ of the true cinnamon. For example, Cinnamomum cassia, also known as China cinnamon, has a very similar taste and texture, but does not have the same health benefits. Only the expensive Cinnamomum verum, which is very often confused with Cinnamomum cassia, offers the medicinal benefits mentioned above.
In the supermarket you will mostly find Cinnamomum cassia (or also under the name ‘China cinnamon’ or ‘Cassia cinnamon’), while Cinnamomum verum will be found as Ceylon cinnamon, which is also recommended by experts.
However, if you already have cassia cinnamon at home, there are some important things to keep in mind. Because many manufacturers do not use real cinnamon, many medications or supplements do not work. The cassia variety should be enjoyed in small amounts (no more than two teaspoons a day) because it contains a much higher level of coumarin, and at high doses, this can cause damage to your health. Coumarin can cause liver toxicity and therefore it is recommended to talk to your family doctor if you want to include cinnamon in your diet.
How much cinnamon should you eat?
The recommended dose is up to 6 grams daily for a maximum of 6 weeks or less. After that, you should take a break for at least 7 days. The reason for this is that the antibacterial properties of cinnamon, can not distinguish the ‘good and bad’ bacteria in the intestine, which means that you will also have to include fermented foods in your diet, so that in your intestine continues to exist a good bacterial milieu.
Experts also warn that women who are pregnant, breastfeeding or have menstrual cycle problems should include very little cinnamon in their diet. If any of these concern you, we urge you to consult your doctor before including cinnamon in your diet.
Cinnamon can be purchased in several different forms: ground powder, cinnamon stick, cinnamon bark oil or even in capsule form. If you have a slow digestive system, you can also combine cinnamon with ginger and cardamom.
You don’t even have to eat cinnamon to take advantage of its ‘power’. Get cinnamon scented candles to boost brain activity or make a homemade toothpaste with the following ingredients: Cinnamon, nutmeg, soda and cinnamon oil. You can also make a face mask with oatmeal and cinnamon to fight acne and impurities.
Your BesserMe Team