Cinnamon has long been used for not only making food taste better, but also for home remedies and medicinal purposes. And while there's not much strongly supported clinical evidence that confirms the health benefits of the spice, many small studies suggest that it does come with some perks.
Clocking in at only six calories per teaspoon, cinnamon is an excellent guilt-free addition to many dishes and drinks. That's why the delightfully flexible spice is a featured ingredient in so many healthy recipes — especially desserts. It can add spicy flavor without relying on tons of sugar, and it's high in antioxidants.
As is the case with many foods, more research is needed to know for sure how cinnamon benefits our health. Until then, here are four ways a dose of cinnamon (the Cleveland Clinic recommends about 1/4 to jp morgan chase bank customer service teaspoon per day) might be worth it — besides the fact that it's delicious, of course.
1. It may lower blood sugar.
Even though some studies suggest cinnamon may lower blood is cinnamon sticks good for you levels in people with type 2 diabetes, the research is too small and conflicting to state it as fact, according to the American Diabetes Association. That said, the association does acknowledge that the spice may be a promising supplement for those with the disease.
2. It can help clear acne.
Thanks to the antibacterial effects of bioactive phytochemicals, cinnamon could help clear breakouts, according to a 2015 review of studies. You can create a simple pimple-fighting topical face mask by combining 2 teaspoons of raw, organic honey (another antibacterial treat), and a sprinkle of cinnamon. Apply to your face for about ten minutes and then rinse gently with a washcloth and warm water.
Also linked to clearer skin: Reducing the amount of foods you eat with added sugar, says Jaclyn London, MS, RD, CDN, Nutrition Director at the Good Housekeeping Institute. Top culprits include sweetened beverages, cereals, crackers, breakfast bars, pastries, and condiments.
3. It promotes younger-looking skin.
In a 2013 study, researchers found evidence that cinnamon extract "significantly promotes type I collagen biosynthesis within dermal fibroblasts." In other words, it can help with wrinkles and aging skin. Yes, please! Try this yummy cinnamon paste mask recipe to keep your skin feeling fresh.
4. It may boost memory.
Oh, the power of smell! A research team at Wheeling Jesuit University found that chewing cinnamon gum during a test "improved participants' scores on tasks related to attentional processes, virtual recognition memory, working memory, and visual-motor response speed." While the study was small, it's worth a shot — especially if you've got a big project in the works that needs your full attention.
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Historically, spices such as turmeric, ginger, or cinnamon used to be valued for their medicinal properties.
Although many people do not know this, there are various types of cinnamon with different health benefits.
Besides conventional Cassia cinnamon, Ceylon is becoming more and more of a household name. Therefore, this article explains why Ceylon may be the better choice than cassia based on recent studies.
Is Ceylon Cinnamon Good for You?
Cinnamon is a bark that comes from various species of cinnamon trees. Producers cut down the tree, remove the outer bark, and harvest and dry the inner bark to make cinnamon sticks.
Due to the round shape of a tree trunk, it rolls in from both sides during drying. Then one can produce ground cinnamon by grinding the sticks into a fine powder.
The characteristic smell and taste of cinnamon come from an essential oil it contains, which has a very high cinnamaldehyde content.
This active compound is responsible for most of the spice’s effects (Torbati et al. 20141).
Therefore, in addition to its warming flavor, cinnamon can provide wide-ranging health benefits.
For example, Ceylon cinnamon has been used in traditional medicine to treat the following ailments (Ranasinghe et al. 20132):
- Digestive disorders
- Gynecological problems
Ceylon cinnamon, also known as Cinnamomum verum or true cinnamon tree, is extracted from the bark of a tropical cinnamon tree that grows mainly in Sri Lanka but also southern India and Madagascar.
What most people don’t know is that there are different varieties of cinnamon. While cinnamon does not differ much in taste, there are significant differences when it comes to health.
Cassia vs. Korintje vs. Saigon vs. Ceylon Cinnamon
Firstly, we need to know the different types of cinnamon to distinguish their health benefits:
Cassia cinnamon, Chinese cinnamon, Cinnamomum cassia, or Cinnamomum aromaticum is the kind of cinnamon you can find in most grocery stores. Because this tree grows in large quantities in China, Cassia is cheaper than Ceylon cinnamon.
That is why most cinnamon products, such as powder, are made from it. Nevertheless, Cassia suits recipes that call for cinnamon.
However, cassia has a sharper, more intense flavor with less sweetness than Ceylon cinnamon. In addition, it is darker and has a reddish-brown hue. Also, cassia sticks are pretty hard and woody.
Indonesian cinnamon, Padang cassia, Batavia cassia, korintje, or Cinnamomum burmannii is a Cassia cinnamon variety native to Southeast Asia.
Because this variety of cinnamon is even cheaper than Chinese Cassia, it represents the most common type of cinnamon sold as a powder in the United States.
The main disadvantage of Indonesian cinnamon is the highest content of coumarin, a potentially harmful compound in cinnamon.
Vietnamese cinnamon or Cinnamomum loureiroi is also a is cinnamon sticks good for you of the Cassia family. However, Saigon cinnamon is far more expensive and harder to come by than regular Cassia cinnamon.
It has a full, complex flavor with even less sweetness.
Unlike other cinnamon varieties, you are unlikely to find Saigon cinnamon in the spice section.
“True cinnamon,”Cinnamomum zeylanicum or Cinnamomum verum, is extracted from the crumbly inner bark of the Ceylon cinnamon tree.
It is light brown, and its flavor is sweet and delicate. Unfortunately, Ceylon is more expensive to purchase and produce than Cassia cinnamon.
Although both varieties share a sweet and spicy flavor spectrum, the health benefits differ significantly.
The two main benefits of Cassia cinnamon are blood sugar regulation and use as a mosquito repellent (Khan et al. 20033; Chang et al. 20064).
But other than that, there are not many reasons to eat Cassia cinnamon. Moreover, Cassia contains coumarin, a chemical compound that can be toxic in high amounts (Felter et al. 20065).
In contrast, the health benefits of Ceylon cinnamon have a broad range from antioxidant to anti-inflammatory to anti-cancer properties.
How Much Ceylon Cinnamon per Day for Health Benefits?
Although studies have proven countless health benefits of Ceylon cinnamon, it’s hard to say how much of it you is cinnamon sticks good for you or should consume to reap them.
It becomes even more challenging to recommend a general serving size because there are different forms of ingestion. For example, these include:
- Dietary supplements
- Essential oils
After most studies use a serving size between 1 gram and 6 grams of cinnamon, even a serving size of 1/2 to 1 teaspoon (2 to 4 grams) of the powder per day can offer health benefits.
While a little more probably won’t hurt, excessive consumption, such as through supplements, can have drawbacks.
Most experts agree that a typical pinch of cinnamon in food and beverages is harmless but still too little for noticeable health benefits.
Ceylon Cinnamon Benefits for Health
Not only does real cinnamon taste good, but it’s also full of anti-inflammatory properties that can improve digestion.
While it shares some benefits with Cassia cinnamon, Ceylon is also far less harmful regarding potential side effects.
Nonetheless, the outstanding spectrum of Ceylon cinnamon benefits ranges from the skin to heart and mental health.
1. It Offers Powerful Antioxidative Properties
Ceylon cinnamon contains antioxidants that can render free radicals harmless and protect the body from oxidative damage (Ranasinghe et al. 20136).
For example, like onion, green tea, or red wine, cinnamon contains a concentrated load of antioxidant polyphenols (Rao et al. 20147).
Moreover, in comparing the best 26 antioxidant spices, cinnamon prevailed over other superfoods such as garlic or oregano and emerged as the proud winner (Shan et al. 20058).
2. Ceylon Cinnamon Has Anti-Cancer Benefits
Due to its antioxidant properties, cinnamon can protect against DNA damage, cell mutation, and tumors.
The main reason for this is the active compound cinnamaldehyde, which comes from the bark of the cinnamon tree. While protecting DNA, it inhibits tumor growth and, at the same time, can induce the death of cancer cells (Ka et al. 20039).
Especially when it comes to colon cancer, the properties of cinnamon may have a positive impact.
On the one hand, cinnamon may improve gut health, reducing the risk of colon cancer (Rao et al. 201410).
On the other hand, researchers have found that cinnamon activates detoxifying enzymes in the intestines of mice, which may inhibit cancer growth (Bhattacharjee et al. 200711).
3. The Spice Is a Natural Is cinnamon sticks good for you of the lesser-known benefits of cinnamon powder is its ability to preserve food.
Because of its antibacterial and antioxidant capabilities, cinnamon can be used as a preservative without the need for chemical additives.
A recent study on the possible function of essential oils as preservatives identified cinnamon as the most effective against fungal growth (Xiang et al. 202012).
Therefore, another study suggests that brushing with cinnamon extract could help stop the discoloration of vegetables and fruits that begin to rot due to oxidation (Shan et al. 200513).
4. Ceylon Cinnamon May Improve Blood Pressure
Cardiovascular diseases are responsible for most of the causes of death in the Western world.
In this context, high blood pressure plays a critical role not only as a symptom. Against this background, researchers found that Ceylon cinnamon can lower blood pressure in rats (Nyadjeu et al. 201114).
In addition, a comprehensive meta-analysis demonstrated that cinnamon consumption could lower triglyceride levels in type 2 diabetics and increase their HDL levels (Allen why is td ameritrade stock down al. 201315).
Since low levels of these blood lipids and high levels of “good cholesterol” are the best indicators for good heart health, this is a remarkable health benefit of cinnamon.
5. The Spice May Reduce Allergy Symptoms
Those of us who suffer from allergies may find relief thanks to the many bioactive compounds in cinnamon.
Animal studies have shown that cinnamon can help reduce common allergy symptoms. For example, it’s precisely the anti-inflammatory properties of cinnamon that counteract histamine responses (Shakila et al. 199616).
In a further study, the polyphenols of the cinnamon extract could alleviate allergic rhinitis in mice (Aswar et al. 201517).
6. Ceylon Cinnamon Offers Anti-Inflammatory Benefits
Studies show that this spice and its antioxidants have potent anti-inflammatory properties (Gunawardena et al. 201518).
This property is especially beneficial since chronic inflammation is cinnamon sticks good for you modern diseases such as cancer, type 2 diabetes, obesity, neurodegenerative, and heart diseases.
Furthermore, Ceylon cinnamon may also be beneficial in pain management. Accordingly, studies have shown that cinnamon helps reduce muscle soreness, menstrual and age-related pain (Mashhadi et al. 201319; Gunawardena et al. 201520).
7. The Spice Exerts Antibacterial Properties
Ceylon cinnamon also offers antibacterial benefits. Accordingly, cinnamaldehyde, the component of cinnamon essential oil that gives it its unique odor, can fight various bacteria (Ranasinghe et al. 201321).
Cinnamaldehyde targets the membrane of bacterial cells, which can destroy them (Rana et al. 201122).
8. Ceylon Cinnamon Benefits Your Brain Health
Whether you’re looking to prevent neurodegenerative diseases or boost your cognitive abilities, Ceylon cinnamon might be the proper remedy.
For example, one study found that cinnamon can improve neuroprotective proteins in the brain, suggesting a potentially successful application in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease (Khasnavis et al. 201423).
Additionally, cinnamon could inhibit two significant markers of Alzheimer’s disease in a laboratory study (Peterson et al. 200924).
Furthermore, Ceylon cinnamon improved the cognitive abilities of rats in which scientists previously induced cognitive decline. After taking the cinnamon extract, the rats’ memory improved significantly (Jain et al. 201525).
9. Cinnamon Is a Natural Antidepressant
A growing number of new studies suggest that cinnamon consumption may have a positive effect on mood.
For example, some researchers suggest using cinnamon essential oil as an adjunct therapy for depression and anxiety disorders (Sohrabi et al. 201726).
Moreover, a red-hot study attributes antidepressant benefits to cinnamon. Since cinnamon inhibits the inflammatory process in the hippocampus, the body can increase serotonin to an optimal level there, according to scientists (Parisa et al. 202027).
10. The Spice Helps Prevent Diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome
Insulin, as our essential storage hormone, is instrumental in metabolism. But, unfortunately, after refined carbohydrates dominate most diets, more and more people develop insulin resistance.
Insulin resistance is how our body protects itself from the high levels of insulin that these foods cause. If cells were too sensitive to excessive insulin levels, it could be life-threatening.
Insulin resistance is a primary pre-existing condition inducing metabolic syndrome and type-2-diabetes.
However, studies show that cinnamon has a positive effect on the essential factors of metabolic syndrome. For example, these include (Qin et al. 201028):
- Blood pressure
- Blood sugar
- Insulin resistance
Therefore, Ceylon cinnamon may subsequently be beneficial in weight loss.
Ceylon Cinnamon Benefits for Weight Loss
Healthy blood glucose is low but stable. Therefore, it can prevent insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes.
Because Ceylon cinnamon contains the polyphenol cinnamtannin B1, it can increase insulin sensitivity and thus counteract blood sugar spikes after a meal.
Also, researchers concluded that Ceylon cinnamon improves glucose metabolism and helps with weight loss (Ranasinghe et al. 201229).
Further cinnamon studies confirmed these results as their participants could increase muscle mass and reduce weight in the process (Qin et al. 201030).
Similarly, 84 women suffering from polycystic ovary syndrome successfully lost weight by taking cinnamon capsules for eight weeks only (Borzoei et al. 201831).
In addition, animal studies have shown that cinnamon helps mitigate glucose and insulin spikes after sugar consumption (Shihabudeen et al. 201132).
Ceylon Cinnamon Benefits for Your Hair
Although there are still relatively few studies on this, individual studies suggest that cinnamon may improve hair growth.
For example, in a how to pay boost mobile phone bill online study, researchers significantly increased the diameter and length of hair in male rats by applying cinnamon oil (Indriana et al. 201833).
According to the researchers, cinnamon oil was able to stimulate blood flow to the scalp. Instrumental in this was the compound cinnamaldehyde, which could increase blood flow to the hair follicles, thus supporting hair growth.
On the other hand, the antifungal effect of cinnamon could also be beneficial for human hair.
Since cinnamon is effective against Malassezia, a type of fungus that is a common cause of dandruff, it may counteract its formation (Mariappan et al. 201334).
Ceylon Cinnamon Benefits for the Skin
Due to its antibiotic and antimicrobial properties, cinnamon may benefit skin health. For example, it can protect the skin from irritation, rashes, allergic reactions, or infections.
In this regard, studies confirm that applying cinnamon essential oil directly to the skin can even relieve inflammation, swelling, pain, and redness (Han et al. 201735).
Moreover, many people swear by using cinnamon and honey together for:
- Skin allergies
Here is a simple but effective recipe for a honey cinnamon mask:
Honey and Cinnamon Mask for Acne
Prep Time 1minute
- 1 tbsp Ceylon Cinnamon ground
- 3 tbsp Honey organic
Mix the ingredients well.
Put the mixture in the microwave for 30 seconds, making sure it doesn't get too hot.
Spread the mixture on your face and leave it for 10 minutes.
After that, wash off the mask and pat your face dry with a clean towel.
In the short term, the consumption of Ceylon cinnamon is considered safe for most people. Therefore, it may be consumed with minimal risk of side effects.
However, with Cassia cinnamon, you should be more careful.
Cassia Cinnamon and Coumarin
While Ceylon cinnamon contains only trace amounts, you’ll find high concentrations of coumarin in Cassia.
Although this is a natural spice, it can cause heartburn, indigestion, and mild sweating in high doses.
Consumption of too much coumarin can cause liver damage, promote certain cancers, and interfere with blood clotting (Abraham et al. 201036; NTP 199337).
For this reason, people should talk to their doctor before adding Cassia cinnamon to their diet if they:
- take blood thinners or other medications,
- have diabetes,
- or liver disease.
Too Much Cinnamon and Allergies
When used as a spice and therefore in comparatively small amounts, Cinnamon is generally not known to cause adverse reactions or allergies.
However, in a few people, cinnamon gum can cause sores in the mouth, usually disappearing after 1-2 (Allen et al. 198838).
If taking it as an extract or essential oil, it is possible to have too much cinnamon, affecting medications and medical conditions.
Therefore, you should be careful with cinnamon supplements if you are pregnant, chic me customer service number, have liver disease, or have recently had surgery.
Because of its blood sugar-regulating effects, people taking diabetes medications in particular also need to be careful (Morales et al. 201439).
Therefore, always make sure you follow the recommended daily dose of cinnamon extracts and oils, or ideally, talk to your doctor before taking them.
Also, is cinnamon sticks good for you cinnamon essential oil, you should first apply a small drop to your skin to test for irritation and allergic reactions.
Nevertheless, cinnamon is considered non-toxic not only for humans but also dogs. However, just like bipeds, quadrupeds should prefer Ceylon cinnamon to minimize coumarin consumption and avoid adverse side effects.
Ceylon Offers the Most Health Benefits of Any Cinnamon
Ceylon cinnamon is one of the few spices that no pantry should be without. For example, even advocates of the Carnivore Diet use it from time to time.
Finally, its antioxidant power benefits blood sugar, heart, brain, and skin health. In addition, it helps to lose weight and curbs cravings.
For this reason, cinnamon is also a popular choice for intermittent fasting or ketogenic diets.
Nevertheless, it makes a difference what kind of cinnamon you buy. If you want to reap the full health benefits of cinnamon, look for Ceylon.
While more commonly available in supermarkets and cheaper, Indonesian and Cassia cinnamon provide fewer benefits and more potential side effects.
15 Turmeric Health Benefits
Ceylon Cinnamon Health Benefits FAQ
How much Ceylon cinnamon is safe per day?
According to experts, about 1/2 to 1 teaspoon or 2 to 4 grams of cinnamon powder a day is considered healthy.
Is Ceylon cinnamon bad for your kidneys?
Coumarin in cinnamon may support the development of cancerous tumors in the kidneys. However, Ceylon has way fewer coumarin content than Cassia cinnamon.
Is Ceylon cinnamon better than regular cinnamon?
Ceylon is healthier than regular Cassia cinnamon because it brings more health benefits and fewer potential side is cinnamon sticks good for you due to its lower coumarin content.
What is the difference between cinnamon and Ceylon cinnamon?
Compared to the cheaper cassia cinnamon, Ceylon cinnamon offers more health benefits and fewer risks due to the is cinnamon sticks good for you coumarin content.
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What Are the Benefits of Chewing on Cinnamon Sticks?
Cinnamon, in powder or stick form, is the bark of a group of plants of the genus Cinnamomum. In addition to being a popular spice, cinnamon has a long history of medicinal use. For example, cinnamon is an ingredient in some ancient Chinese cold remedies. Despite the many potential health benefits of cinnamon, you should consult your doctor before adding cinnamon sticks or other cinnamon products to your diet. Some cinnamon products have high levels of coumarin, which can lead to liver damage and harmful drug interactions.
Some studies suggest that cinnamon has antioxidant and antitumor properties. Antioxidants decrease the amount of damage caused by free radicals in the body. In contrast to most molecules, free radicals have unpaired electrons. Because electrons are much more stable when in pairs, free radicals take electrons from other molecules in the body. This causes damage, some of which can promote cancer if left unchecked.
- Some studies suggest that cinnamon has antioxidant and antitumor properties.
- In contrast to most molecules, free radicals have unpaired electrons.
How Much Cinnamon Supplement to Take
The two primary forms of cholesterol are HDL, which stands for high-density lipoprotein, and LDL, which stands for low-density lipoprotein. HDL is denser than LDL because HDL contains more protein, while LDL contains more fat. HDL is commonly called good cholesterol and LDL bad cholesterol. Cinnamon, even in relatively low quantities, is believed to lower a person's LDL and thus improve the person's cholesterol ratio and overall cardiac health.
- The two primary forms of cholesterol are HDL, which stands for high-density lipoprotein, and LDL, which stands for low-density lipoprotein.
- HDL is commonly called good cholesterol and LDL bad cholesterol.
Several studies suggest that cinnamon may have anti-inflammatory properties. As arthritis is a common ailment involving inflammatory pain, cinnamon has been suggested as a potential treatment for arthritis. For example, traditional medicine in southwestern Nigeria uses cinnamon mixed with honey as a treatment for arthritis pain.
Cinnamon Allergy Symptoms
Cinnamon may help regulate blood sugar. Some researchers have investigated the effects of using cinnamon as a treatment for type 2 diabetes, otherwise known as adult-onset diabetes. In type 2 diabetes, the patient's body cannot properly use insulin. As a result, the patient's blood sugar becomes elevated. This can lead to a variety of health problems, such as frequent infections and even blindness. The results of these type 2 diabetes studies are inconclusive.
- Cinnamon may help regulate blood sugar.
- In type 2 diabetes, the patient's body cannot properly use insulin.
- Health Diaries: 10 Health Benefits of Cinnamon is cinnamon sticks good for you Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center: Sloan-Kettering: Cinnamon
- BMC Cancer: Cinnamon Extract Induces Tumor Cell Death Through Inhibition of NFκB and AP1; Ho-Keun Kwon et al
- Journal of Entomology: Survey for the Usage of Arthropods in Traditional Medicine in Southwestern Nigeria
- Rao PV, Gan SH. Cinnamon: A Multifaceted Medicinal Plant. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2014;2014:642942. doi:10.1155/2014/642942
- Khan A, Safdar M, Ali Khan MM, Khattak KN, Anderson RA. Cinnamon Improves Glucose and Lipids of People With Type 2 Crbauto. Diabetes Care. 2003;26(12):3215-3218. doi:10.2337/diacare.26.12.3215
- Mollazadeh H, Hosseinzadeh H. Cinnamon effects on metabolic syndrome: a review based on its mechanisms. Iran J Basic Med Sci. 2016;19(12):1258-1270. doi:10.22038/IJBMS.2016.7906
- Gruenwald J, Freder J, Armbruester N. Cinnamon and Health. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2010;50(9):822-834. doi:10.1080/10408390902773052
- Goel N, Rohilla H, Singh G, Punia P. Antifungal Activity of Cinnamon Oil and Olive Oil against Candida Spp. Isolated from Blood Stream Infections. J Clin Diagn Res. 2016;10(8):DC09-11. doi:10.7860/JCDR/2016/19958.8339
- Murali MR, Naveen SV, Son CG, Raghavendran HRB. Current knowledge on alleviating infections through the use of some commonly known natural products: bench to bedside. Integr Med Res. 2014;3(3):111-118. doi:10.1016/j.imr.2014.04.001
- Hawrelak JA, Myers SP. Effects of Two Natural Is cinnamon sticks good for you Formulations on Irritable Bowel Syndrome Symptoms: A Pilot Study. J Altern Complement Med. 2010;16(10):1065-1071. doi:10.1089/acm.2009.0090
- Walanj S, Walanj A, Mohan V, Thakurdesai PA. Efficacy and safety of the topical use of intranasal cinnamon bark extract in seasonal allergic rhinitis patients: A double-blind placebo-controlled pilot study. Journal of Herbal Medicine. 2014;4(1):37-47. doi:10.1016/j.hermed.2013.12.002
- Connolly M, Axtell A, Hickey S, et al. Chemical Burn From Cinnamon Oil. Eplasty. 2017;17:ic11.
Sly Tutor has been a writer since 2005 and has had work appear in the "Altoona Mirror" newspaper. She holds a Bachelor of Science in microbiology from Pennsylvania State University.