Eat plenty of cinnamon for good taste and great health
Cinnamon is one of the best known and best loved spices in all the world, and in earlier times a few grams of cinnamon could bring a king’s ransom on the open market. While the cost of this great spice is quite reasonable today, cinnamon remains one of the world’s most valuable substances in terms of its effects on health and nutrition.
Traditional uses of cinnamon
Many traditional cultures around the world have been using cinnamon not just as an ingredient in their favorite dishes but as a medicine as well. In fact, cinnamon has been valued highly for its medicinal properties for hundreds, perhaps even thousands of years.
New scientific evidence
One of the areas in which cinnamon has shown great promise in clinical studies is in the treatment of type 2 diabetes. A recent study in the Diabetes Care journal has found that the ingestion of just a half a teaspoon of cinnamon every day significantly reduced the level of blood sugar in those with type 2 diabetes. In addition, the same study found that cinnamon was able to reduce triglycerides, LDL (bad) cholesterol and total cholesterol levels in the same study participants.
Some of the many health benefits thought to stem from cinnamon include:
Better digestion – Cinnamon and other related spices have long been used as a digestive aid, and those who suffer from stomach cramps, irritable bowel syndrome and other common stomach disorders often find that adding cinnamon to their favorite dish aids digestion.
Toning of tissues – There is considerable anecdotal evidence to suggest that cinnamon has the ability to tone and constrict tissues in the body.
Relief from congestion – Cinnamon and other spices have long been used to relieve the congestion that can come from colds, allergies and other common conditions.
Relief from muscle and joint pain and stiffness – Those who eat cinnamon on a regular basis often report that their muscle and joint pain and stiffness is reduced or even eliminated.
Relief from menstrual cramping and other discomfort – Cinnamon has long been used in the world of traditional medicine to treat the discomfort that accompanies menstruation, and many women report that a daily helping of cinnamon greatly reduces cramping, pain and other common menstrual complaints.
Thinning of the blood and better circulation – Like garlic, cinnamon acts as a blood thinning agent. Though not as powerful as garlic, cinnamon also acts to thin the blood and increase circulation.
Relief from the pain of arthritis – Recent studies have suggested that cinnamon may contain anti-inflammatory compounds that may be useful in reducing the pain and inflammation associated with arthritis.
Prevention of urinary tract infections – Many of those who eat cinnamon on a regular basis report a lower incidence of urinary tract infections.
Prevention of tooth decay and gum disease – Likewise there is considerable anecdotal evidence that cinnamon may be helpful in the prevention of tooth decay and gum disease.
Killing harmful bacteria – Cinnamon has been shown to be a powerful antimicrobial agent, one that has the ability to kill such common germs as E. coli and other harmful bacteria.