Cinnamon is a spice that is available in powder form or as a whole and is beneficial for its medicinal properties and loads of antioxidants.
If asked about your favorite spice, what would that be? Well, since there is a variety, different people may have different answers. However, one of the beneficial spices available is cinnamon. Whether you have tried it or not or are now thinking of the dishes to incorporate it into, no problem. Please keep reading to find out more about what it is, some of the ways to incorporate it into your diet, the benefits it has, and potential side effects too.
What is Cinnamon?
Cinnamon is one of the various spices provided by nature. You can obtain it from different tree species that fall under the genus Cinnamonum.This spice is native to South America, South Asia, and the Caribbean. It has been used as early as 2000BC. In those times, it was held highly in Egypt.
Over the years, doctors have used it to treat numerous conditions, from coughing, sore throats to arthritis. Some people use it as an essential oil, while others also utilize it as a supplement. Interestingly, this spice falls at number two among the most popular spices in the US and Europe.
You can get cinnamon as a whole or in the form of powder. Moreover, this spice is available in two forms that vary in their nutrition; cassia and Ceylon. Among the things that stand out in this spice is its distinctive smell, which results from its cinnamaldehyde.
Notably, many apply cinnamon in their diet for both sweet and savory dishes. However, when thinking of incorporating this spice into your diet, how can you serve it?
Do you want to enjoy the distinct fragrance of cinnamon in your food? No problem. The following are some of the creative ways you can add it to your diet;
- Instead of sprinkling sugar over your oatmeal, have a pinch of cinnamon instead.
- If you love baked products, from cakes, bread, cookies to pastries, add cinnamon as one of your ingredients.
- Do you crave a sugar treat but want it low? No problem. Have cinnamon as atopping on your waffle with some apples, and enjoy.
- You can add the powder form of this spice to your toast too.
- You can have cinnamon rolls for your morning.
- Add your cinnamon to pork loin chops for some extra delicious taste.
Therefore, this spice allows you to turn your basic recipe into something more delicious. If you want everyone to come running for breakfast, enjoy a nice treat, or have an awesome dessert, cinnamon got you sorted.
The Benefits of Cinnamon
The following are some of the benefits you may realize from consuming cinnamon;
If you consume cinnamon, you will get its loads of antioxidants, which will help keep your body free from oxidative damage resulting from free radicals. Among the powerful antioxidants it contains are polyphenols.
May Lower Risks of Heart Disease
Heart disease is the leading cause of premature death globally. Therefore, to protect yourself and reduce your chances of being a victim, cinnamon can help. It acts by reducing the levels of LDL, the “bad” cholesterol, while maintaining the HDL, the “good” cholesterol stable. Therefore, you can aim at consuming a dose of 120mg of this spice daily to get this benefit.
One of the amazing properties of cinnamon has to do with its ability to help lower blood sugar. It can reduce the glucose amount entering your bloodstream once you eat by altering digestive enzymes that slow the rate at which carbohydrates are broken down in your digestive tract.
May Help Protect Against Cancer
Among the serious diseases understudy is cancer. A lot of research is carried to look for prevention and treatment of this condition. According to the available evidence, cinnamon extracts have the potential to protect an individual against cancer. It can reduce the growth of cancer cells, and it seems to be poisonous to cancer cells.
May Improve Insulin Sensitivity
Insulin hormone helps transport blood sugar to your body cells and regulation your metabolism. However, if you are insulin-resistant, you have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes. There is some good news, though. Cinnamon can reduce your insulin resistance by increasing its sensitivity.
The Side Effects
The good news is, this spice is generally safe for most people. When they consume it moderately for the short-term, it poses no potential dangers. This is the same case when you use it as a supplement too.
However, cinnamon has a natural flavoring, coumarin, which helps create warfarin, leading to blood thinning. Therefore, when you take too much coumarin, you can damage your liver, or it can affect coagulation.
Since it interferes with coagulation, you should avoid it if you are under anticoagulants or other medication. Moreover, if you have a condition in your liver, you should avoid it. Individuals with diabetes can also do well to stay away from coumarin.
Therefore, it is important you first speak to your trusted health care professional before you decide to add cinnamon to your diet. Besides, regardless of the form in which you are consuming it, this spice should not replace any medical treatment you should undertake.
Furthermore, since supplements may cause lots of concerns, ask your doctor if it is okay if you use cinnamon supplements.
Cinnamon is an amazing spice that is available in powder form or as a whole. You can use it in many ways, as a treatment for coughs, an essential oil, or even a supplement. Moreover, if you want to utilize its distinct fragrance, you can add it to your diet. There are different serving options for achieving this. Nonetheless, there are numerous benefits you will get from using it, from its loads of antioxidants to its ability in helping to lower blood sugar levels. Notably, when you use it in the right amounts as recommended, it is safe, and you will not experience any side effects. If you do, inform your doctor.