If you have used no other seasonal spice this season, you’ve probably used cinnamon, and with good reason! It has got just the right smell and just the right taste, warming everything from your hot chocolate to your heart. The spice has even more than that, though! Cinnamon has a load of health benefits that are sure to entice you to use it even more than you already do. The spice is derived from the bark of Cinnamomum verum trees, from which cinnamon farmers first strip the outer layer of bark, and then the inner layer (the inner layer is the cinnamon one, which is what those curled, solid cinnamon sticks are from). Did you know that the world’s best cinnamon is known to originate from Sri Lanka (Ceylon), the home of Tipson?
Whether taken in the form of its pure bark, essential oils, powder, or as a supplement, cinnamon is antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, immunity-boosting and has potential cancer and heart disease-protecting abilities. So, here is why cinnamon is so good for you!
As the change in seasons are approaching, it is quite common to catch a cold or the flu, which means that those pesky sore throats will be back. Did you know that you can soothe that scratchy throat by sipping on some cinnamon infused water? Soak a cinnamon stick in warm water and drink it with a drop of honey about two-three times a day for a natural homemade remedy. You can also boil cinnamon sticks and inhale the vapour to relieve congestion!
The spice has the ability to lower blood sugar levels and improve sensitivity to the hormone insulin, which helps keep blood sugar levels balanced! This is because cinnamon can help block the activity of several digestive enzymes to slow the absorption of sugar in the bloodstream, which can have a great impact on your blood sugar markers.
Eating cinnamon increases neurotrophic factors, which keep existing neurons in your brain alive and encourage new ones to grow. This may delay the progression of diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. It’s also been found to decrease responses to stress, so you can stay focused and alert!
Cinnamon can act as a pain reliever in certain cases. For a sinus headache, you can combine half a teaspoon of cinnamon with water to make a paste and apply it on your forehead. Numerous studies have also shown that using a combination of cinnamon powder and honey or ginger can help treat arthritis pain. Cinnamon is a good source of manganese which helps in building of bones and other connective tissues. Hence it is helpful in arthritis and osteoporosis! A mix of cinnamon powder and ginger when applied as a paste can also reduce post-workout muscle soreness.
Cinnamon is known to improve blood circulation of the scalp, strengthen hair roots and promote hair growth. Did you know that by using two teaspoons of cinnamon powder in a hair mask with one tablespoon of warm olive oil and one tablespoon of honey can go a long way in promoting the health of your hair! The antibacterial properties of cinnamon also help in preventing tooth decay and gum disease. This is why cinnamon oil is often used in chewing gums, mouthwashes, toothpastes and breath mints.
There are also other fun health benefits of the spice! A natural breath freshener, some cinnamon might be great if you’re looking for a natural fix. And if the dry winter weather is wreaking havoc on your skin, the antibacterial and antimicrobial properties of cinnamon can help protect your skin from all kinds of irritation, including rashes, allergic reactions, and infection! How best to enjoy this wonder spice, then? We suggest sprinkling it into almost everything, your oatmeal, coffee or tea, baked goods, and trail mix all benefit from the earthy goodness that is cinnamon. It really is good for you!