Cinnamon: The Healer Hiding in Your Kitchen
Cinnamon may conjure churros, holiday candles or French toast during those long-ago endless brunch Sundays. But fact: cinnamon is powerful. It can help boost mood, metabolism and lead to long-term health. Reap all those wonders—delicious kick included—in our Stave the Crave stress relief chai.
Why We Love Cinnamon
- Accessibility! Unlike exotic ingredients that can challenge our palates, cinnamon gives us the warm fuzzies of fresh cookies. Pull from the pantry to add to oats, yogurts, fruit bakes, etc., and better health is (maybe literally) within reach.
- Cinnamon is almost as popular with medical researchers as it is with bakers. This means that there are great clinical trials showing cinnamon’s medicinal effectiveness.
Mood & Natural Stress Relief - Yes, cinnamon is an adaptogen, which means that it balances stress hormones for a balance of energy and calm. Perfect for women’s stress supplements, right? Scientists have identified an active compound called cinnamaldehyde that they believe is a big part of how cinnamon reduces stress. There is also promising research that cinnamon oil may be able to decrease occasional symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Boosts Metabolism - We included cinnamon in our Stave the Crave stress relief chai because it can help increase blood flow, which in turn may help speed up metabolism. Cinnamon also helps you metabolize sugar by increasing insulin sensitivity and slowing down the enzymes that break complex carbohydrates into simple sugars. In proper doses, both effects are shown to lower blood sugar, which is good for hormonal balance and overall health.
Supports Heart Health - Cinnamon is a heart health warrior. Women’s heart health is especially important because changing perimenopause hormones can lead to greater risk of heart disease, which is the leading killer of American women. Scores of high-quality studies have connected cinnamon supplements with lower cholesterol levels, healthier arteries and improved blood pressure. There’s also mounting research connecting cinnamon consumption with lowered risk for type 2 diabetes.
Neuroprotective - Cinnamon is full of antioxidants that are shown to protect your brain against cognitive diseases like Alzheimer’s, dementia and Parkinson’s disease. Animal studies have found that cinnamon decreases the buildup of a plaque-like substance called tau. Tau is connected with damage to nerve cells, so cinnamon’s ability to decrease it is great news! Evidence even indicates that cinnamon can improve cognition. There’s more research coming out here, so keep an eye out for updates!
Improves PMS Symptoms - When it comes to periods after 40, it can feel like anything goes. If cramps or abnormally heavy flow are getting in your way, cinnamon can help! In randomized, double-blind trials, women who took cinnamon reported decreased nausea and less period pain than the placebo group. On average, the cinnamon group also experienced a lighter flow.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, cinnamon is used to treat:
- Digestive disorders
- Heart disease
- Gynecological disorders
Ancient Romans and Egyptians also used cinnamon to help with digestion and respiratory illnesses.
Cinnamon’s traditional popularity reached all the way beyond the grave. Its antioxidant powers have been recognized as a natural preservative since at least the time of the Egyptian empire, when it was used in the mummification process. Ancient Romans also used cinnamon as a perfume for burials.
About the Plant:
Cinnamon is the red inner bark of the cinnamon tree. The trees themselves have clusters of oval leaves and little white flowers that develop into small black berries.
Ceylon cinnamon trees, whose bark is the highest quality of cinnamon, are native to Sri Lanka and the southern coast of India. Other cinnamon varieties are native to Indonesia, Vietnam and China.
The search for cinnamon and other spices prompted much of European colonization.
Found In (Wile Products):
Things to Know about Cinnamon:
Here’s a place where life teaches us balance — there is such a thing as too much cinnamon. Most culinary cinnamon is a variety called Cassia cinnamon, which has a strong flavor and high levels of a compound called coumarin. Too much coumarin can be harmful, and can cause:
- Stomach ache
- Low blood pressure
- Liver damage
- Blood thinning
- Difficulty breathing (especially if you let a spoonful of cinnamon coat your throat! Don’t try to swallow it dry!)
1 teaspoon of Cassia cinnamon has enough coumarin to make most adults feel unwell.
If you’re a huge cinnamon fan, we have good news. Ceylon cinnamon only has trace amounts of coumarin. You can safely consume much more Ceylon cinnamon, which has a pleasantly mild flavor and a lighter brown color than Cassia cinnamon.
It’s also important to keep in mind that cinnamon can interact with medications like blood thinners or others that reduce blood pressure or sugar or break down in your liver. If you take any of these, talk to your doctor before starting a supplement with cinnamon.
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This article is intended for informational purposes and is not intended to replace a one-on-one medical consultation with a professional. Wile, Inc researches and shares information and advice from our own research and advisors. We encourage every woman to research, ask questions and speak to a trusted health care professional to make her own best decisions.