The health benefits of cinnamon are numerous. Cinnamon has a lot of medicinal properties that people have relied on to lead healthy lives. Outlined in this article are some health benefits of cinnamon, most of which have been proven scientifically. Cinnamon is a spice usually extracted from the back of a tree known as Cinnamomum. For many years, cinnamon has been used as an ingredient. Historically, in some parts of Egypt, it was regarded as a very valuable good and could be used to gift kings. Today however, cinnamon is accessible and cheap. If you walk in to any market, you are bound to find it there.
Notably, there are two different types of cinnamon. The first type is Ceylon cinnamon and the second type is Cassia cinnamon. Cassia cinnamon is the most common variety that many people use for various recipes.
The making of cinnamon powder involves extraction of the inner bark and drying of the inner bark. When it dries, it is crushed to form the powder.
Benefits of cinnamon powder
Here is a list of top 10 health benefits of cinnamon:
1. Can be used as medicine
This is one of the major uses of cinnamon. Cinnamon contains a compound known as cinnamaldehyde which scientists say makes cinnamon very powerful. This compound is oily and accounts for the nutritional value of cinnamon.
2. Cinnamon contains antioxidants
Why is cinnamon good for your health? There are many reasons. This is one of the reasons why you should incorporate it in your recipe more often. Cinnamon has several antioxidants such as polyphenols. Antioxidants are very useful in the body as they protect it from damage caused by free radicals.
A study conducted to investigate the antioxidant activity in 26 spices revealed that cinnamon has very powerful antioxidants. Cinnamon is very powerful such that it can be used to preserve food.
3. Cinnamon prevents inflammation
This is one of the health benefits of cinnamon tea. Cinnamon contains properties that are anti-inflammatory. When you drink it or include it in your food, it helps to keep your body free from infections. When your tissues are damage, it helps them to heal. Chronic inflammation is detrimental to your health. This is why you need to consume cinnamon so that it can lower the risk of you getting a disease.
4. Cinnamon reduces the risk of heart disease
Anyone can suffer from heart disease especially if they lead an unhealthy lifestyle. A study revealed that if people with type 2 diabetes consume 1 gram of cinnamon every day, this can have a positive impacts on their blood markers. Cinnamon reduces the level of the bad cholesterol while making the good cholesterol to remain stable. All these benefits of cinnamon go a long way in helping to reduce the risk of contracting heart disease. Remember, heart disease is a killer illness and it is good that it can be prevented naturally through the consumption of cinnamon.
5. Cinnamon makes the hormone insulin to become more sensitive
One of the major components in the body is insulin. Insulin is very useful as it regulates the use of energy and the metabolism of the body. Another thing that insulin does is transport blood sugar to the cells of the body. However, many people are resistant to the impacts of insulin. Insulin resistance is a dangerous disease as it can lead to type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome. It is in this context that cinnamon benefits come in. When you consume cinnamon, it prevents the resistance of insulin by your body. When insulin resistance is reduced, insulin is able to carry out the activities that it is meant to in your body. As a result, your blood sugar levels remain at the required level.
6. Cinnamon also lowers blood sugar level
Another benefit of cinnamon is that it contains properties that lower the blood sugar level in your body giving an anti-diabetic effect. It does this in several ways. The first way is through the fact that it decreases the amount of glucose that gets into your bloodstream after you eat. After you eat, cinnamon interferes with the digestive enzymes. This slows down the speed at which carbohydrates are broken down in the digestive system.
The second way that cinnamon lowers blood sugar level is by mimicking insulin and acting on the cells. When it does this, a lot of insulin is taken in by the cells. Even though this is a slow process, it works. For this to happen, a person needs to consume 1–6 grams of cinnamon every day. Being that diabetic is a detrimental disease, it is wise to prevent its severity through consumption of cinnamon.
7. Cinnamon can be used to manage neurodegenerative diseases
Neurodegenerative diseases interfere with the brain. They lead to the loss of brain cells and interfere with their functions. The two neurodegenerative diseases that cinnamon can help to deal with include Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
There are two compounds that facilitate the build up of protein in cinnamon. When you consume it, this protein tau builds up in the brain cells. This protein is very necessary in the treatment of Alzheimer’s.
A study carried out in mice to determine the effectiveness of cinnamon indicated that this spice protects neurons, it normalizes neurotransmitter levels and improves the motor function in the body. This indicates that regular consumption of cinnamon can lead to improvements in the Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases.
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8. Cinnamon can offer protection from cancer
Today, cancer has become very rampant. But it gives relief to know that certain natural occurring spices such as cinnamon can be used to prevent cancer. Studies carried out on test-tubes and animals reveal that cinnamon has the ability to offer protection from cancer. It does this by preventing the growth of cancer cells. It also prevents blood vessels from forming in the tumours. Cinnamon is also toxic to cancer cells and it kills them.
9. Cinnamon fights infections from bacteria and fungi
Like mentioned earlier, cinnamon contains a compound known as Cinnamaldehyde. This compound has several medicinal values and can be used to fight bacterial and fungal infections. Also, cinnamon oil is used by people to treat fungal infections that occur in the respiratory tract.
Cinnamon also prevents the growth of bacteria such as Listeria and Salmonella.
People experiencing tooth decay and bad breath from the mouth can also use cinnamon to prevent such occurrences.
10. Cinnamon can help fight the HIV virus
The HIV various slowly weakens the immune system. If not treated, it can lead to AIDS. Experts say that cinnamon can help fight this virus, enabling the restoration of immunity in an infected person.
The Cassia variety of cinnamon helps to fight HIV-1, the most common HIV strain in many people.
In a lab study carried out to examine cells infected with HIV, it was revealed that out of 69 plants, cinnamon was the best.
Based on the analysis above, cinnamon can be relied upon when someone wants to improve their immunity. However, too much of anything is poisonous. It is believed that too much consumption of the Cassia variety of cinnamon is detrimental to the health of a person. However, the other variety Ceylon is good and has no harmful effect. The problem is that the cassia variety is cheap and readily available as compared to the Ceylon variety.
Since the health benefits of cinnamon are many, it is important that you consume cinnamon more often. The best thing about consuming cinnamon is that your visits to the doctor reduce significantly. It also helps you to prevent and manage diseases such as diabetes. It also helps to fight HIV-1 infection, preventing you from developing AIDS. With cinnamon, you can also enhance the proper functioning of the respiratory system. It is also amazing that cinnamon helps to lower the blood sugar levels. However, you must be careful about the doses that you take. Too much of it can do harm than the good that you intended. Instead of consuming the cassia variety of cinnamon, consume the Ceylon variety. The Ceylon variety might not be readily available like the former but using it is worth it. You can search for either of these varieties from both online and physical stores. The moment you begin incorporating cinnamon in your diet is the day that you lead a disease and infection-free life. How great is that?
The information in this article is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. All content including text, graphics, images, and information contained on or available through this page is for general information purposes only.
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Source: Yen Ghana