Ceylon cinnamon, also known as “true” cinnamon, is a type of cinnamon that is native to Sri Lanka. It has been used for centuries not only for its delightful flavor but also for its potential health benefits. Here are some of the benefits associated with Ceylon cinnamon.
Ceylon Cinnamon Benefits
Ceylon cinnamon is rich in antioxidants, such as polyphenols, which help protect the body against oxidative stress caused by free radicals. Antioxidants are known to have various health benefits, including reducing inflammation and lowering the risk of chronic diseases.
Cinnamon, including Ceylon cinnamon, has been found to possess anti-inflammatory properties. It may help reduce inflammation in the body, which is associated with conditions like arthritis, cardiovascular diseases, and certain types of cancer.
Blood sugar regulation
One of the most well-known benefits of Ceylon cinnamon is its potential to help regulate blood sugar levels. It may improve insulin sensitivity, enhance glucose metabolism, and lower fasting blood sugar levels. This makes it particularly beneficial for individuals with diabetes or those at risk of developing the condition.
Ceylon cinnamon may have a positive impact on heart health. It has been shown to lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels, which are key risk factors for cardiovascular diseases. By reducing these risk factors, Ceylon cinnamon may contribute to maintaining a healthy heart.
Ceylon cinnamon possesses antimicrobial properties, which means it can help fight against various types of bacteria and fungi. It has been used traditionally as a natural remedy for treating infections and may be effective against oral bacteria, as well as certain types of foodborne pathogens.
Some studies suggest that cinnamon, including Ceylon cinnamon, may have cognitive-enhancing properties. It may help improve memory, attention, and overall cognitive function. However, further research is needed to establish the extent of these benefits.
Ceylon cinnamon may play a role in weight management. It has been found to increase metabolism, reduce appetite, and improve insulin sensitivity, which can potentially aid in weight loss or weight maintenance efforts.
It’s important to note that while Ceylon cinnamon offers potential health benefits, it should be consumed in moderation as part of a balanced diet. Also, individuals with specific health conditions or those taking medications should consult with a healthcare professional before incorporating large amounts of cinnamon into their diet.
Ceylon Cinnamon Nutrition
Ceylon cinnamon is not only flavorful but also offers a range of beneficial nutrients. Here is an overview of the nutritional profile of Ceylon cinnamon per 100 grams:
- Calories: 247 kcal
- Carbohydrates: 80.6 grams
- Fiber: 53.1 grams
- Protein: 4 grams
- Fat: 1.2 grams
Ceylon cinnamon is a good source of dietary fiber, which aids in digestion and promotes a healthy gut. It also contains small amounts of essential minerals such as calcium, iron, and manganese. Additionally, cinnamon is rich in antioxidants, particularly polyphenols, which provide various health benefits.
It’s worth noting that the nutritional composition of cinnamon may vary slightly depending on the source and processing method. The values mentioned above are approximate and can vary from brand to brand or based on the quality of the product.
Ceylon Cinnamon Side effects
Ceylon cinnamon is generally safe for consumption when used in moderation as a spice or flavoring agent. However, consuming excessive amounts of cinnamon, including Ceylon cinnamon, or taking cinnamon supplements may lead to certain side effects. Here are some potential side effects associated with cinnamon consumption:
Although rare, some individuals may be allergic to cinnamon. Allergic reactions can range from mild symptoms like skin irritation, hives, or itching to more severe reactions such as difficulty breathing, swelling, or anaphylaxis. If you experience any allergic symptoms after consuming cinnamon, discontinue its use and seek medical attention.
Irritation of the mouth or digestive system
Cinnamon, especially in its powdered form, can sometimes cause irritation or burning sensations in the mouth, throat, or gastrointestinal tract. This is more likely to occur if you consume large quantities of cinnamon or have a sensitive digestive system.
Cinnamon contains a compound called coumarin, which, when consumed in excessive amounts, may have hepatotoxic effects and cause liver damage. However, Ceylon cinnamon contains much lower levels of coumarin compared to the more common Cassia cinnamon, making it less likely to cause liver issues. If you have existing liver problems or are taking medications that affect the liver, it’s advisable to consult a healthcare professional before consuming large amounts of cinnamon.
Interaction with medications
Cinnamon may interact with certain medications, including blood thinners, diabetes medications, and antifungal drugs. It can potentially enhance the effects of these medications or interfere with their absorption. If you are taking any medications, it’s important to consult your healthcare provider before significantly increasing your cinnamon intake.
Applying cinnamon directly to the skin or using cinnamon-based products may cause skin irritation, redness, or allergic reactions in some individuals. It’s advisable to perform a patch test on a small area of skin before applying cinnamon topically.
It’s important to note that the majority of these side effects occur when cinnamon is consumed in large amounts or in concentrated forms. Moderate consumption of Ceylon cinnamon as part of a balanced diet is generally safe for most people. If you have any concerns or pre-existing health conditions, it’s best to consult with a healthcare professional before making any significant changes to your diet or cinnamon consumption.