Cooling Cinnamon Can Improve Overall Health
Cinnamon is one of the oldest spices known to man, and its health benefits are many!
Cinnamon comes from the brown bark of the cinnamon tree and has a long history of being used as both a spice and a medicine. The beneficial substance in cinnamon is called cinnamaldehyde, a compound known for its antibacterial properties. Cinnamon is also rich in antioxidants and fiber.
Recently, in addition to all of its other positive qualities, cinnamon was found to help maintain the integrity of the stomach wall. Professor Kourosh Kalantar-zadeh, of RMIT’s school of Engineering, conducted research on pigs and explains that while eating at room temperature, carbon dioxide (CO2) is increased within the stomach. Cinnamon was found to help reduce this gas by decreasing the secretion of gastric acid and pepsin from the stomach walls, which in turn cools the stomach during digestion.
The cooling may lead to a significant improvement in overall health as it could help maintain the functioning and health of the gut.
Fellow researcher Dr. Jian Zhen Ou says, "Altogether cinnamon cooled the stomach by up to 2C. No wonder cinnamon is so popular in warm regions as taking it makes people feel better and gives them a feeling of cooling down."
It isn’t clear if this newly found benefit is applicable to humans, or what long-term effects this may have on our own health. However, cinnamon does have other healthful benefits to consider:
• Cinnamon may help lowering blood sugar and reducing insulin resistance in those with Type 2 Diabetes
• Cinnamon may help lower bad cholesterol (LDL) and may also help with decreasing triglycerides
• Cinnamon may help lower inflammation within the body
• Cinnamon may have anti-cancer benefits
• Cinnamon may also help with some neurological conditions, including Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimers
Until we know more about maximum safe doses, it is probably best to continue to get cinnamon from food rather than dietary supplements. (In fact, some research indicates that too high of an intake of cinnamon can lead to liver toxicity).
Here are some easy ways to add cinnamon to your diet:
• Add a dash to your coffee or tea
• Add cinnamon to your breakfast cereal or smoothies
• Make cinnamon toast for breakfast.
• Drop a cinnamon stick into your drinking water or steamed milk
• Toss in some cinnamon in chili
• A little cinnamon in a bean dish brings out the flavor
• Make cinnamon stewed apples for dessert
Jian Zhen Ou, Kourosh Kalantar-zadeh, et al. Potential of in vivo real-time gastric gas profiling: a pilot evaluation of heat-stress and modulating dietary cinnamon effect in an animal model. Scientific Reports, 2016; 6: 33387 DOI: 10.1038/srep33387
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