“True cinnamon,” Cinnamomum zeylanicum or Cinnamomum verum, is extracted from the crumbly inner bark of the Ceylon cinnamon tree.
It is light brown, and its flavor is sweet and delicate. Unfortunately, Ceylon is more expensive to purchase and produce than Cassia cinnamon.
Although both varieties share a sweet and spicy flavor spectrum, the health benefits differ significantly.
The two main benefits of Cassia cinnamon are blood sugar regulation and use as a mosquito repellent.
But other than that, there are not many reasons to eat Cassia cinnamon. Moreover, Cassia contains coumarin, a chemical compound that can be toxic in high amounts.
In contrast, the health benefits of Ceylon cinnamon have a broad range from antioxidant to anti-inflammatory to anti-cancer properties.
How Much Ceylon Cinnamon per Day for Health Benefits?
Although studies have proven countless health benefits of Ceylon cinnamon, it’s hard to say how much of it you can or should consume to reap them.
It becomes even more challenging to recommend a general serving size because there are different forms of ingestion. For example, these include:
- Dietary supplements
- Essential oils
After most studies use a serving size between 1 gram and 6 grams of cinnamon, even a serving size of 1/2 to 1 teaspoon (2 to 4 grams) of the powder per day can offer health benefits.
While a little more probably won’t hurt, excessive consumption, such as through supplements, can have drawbacks.
Most experts agree that a typical pinch of cinnamon in food and beverages is harmless but still too little for noticeable health benefits.
Ceylon Cinnamon Benefits for Health
Not only does real cinnamon taste good, but it’s also full of anti-inflammatory properties that can improve digestion.
While it shares some benefits with Cassia cinnamon, Ceylon is also far less harmful regarding potential side effects.
Nonetheless, the outstanding spectrum of Ceylon cinnamon benefits ranges from the skin to heart and mental health.
1. It Offers Powerful Antioxidative Properties
Ceylon cinnamon contains antioxidants that can render free radicals harmless and protect the body from oxidative damage.
Moreover, in comparing the best 26 antioxidant spices, cinnamon prevailed over other superfoods such as garlic or oregano and emerged as the proud winner.
2. Ceylon Cinnamon Has Anti-Cancer Benefits
Due to its antioxidant properties, cinnamon can protect against DNA damage, cell mutation, and tumors.
The main reason for this is the active compound cinnamaldehyde, which comes from the bark of the cinnamon tree. While protecting DNA, it inhibits tumor growth and, at the same time, can induce the death of cancer cells.
Especially when it comes to colon cancer, the properties of cinnamon may have a positive impact.
On the one hand, cinnamon may improve gut health, reducing the risk of colon cancer.
On the other hand, researchers have found that cinnamon activates detoxifying enzymes in the intestines of mice, which may inhibit cancer growth.
3. The Spice Is a Natural Preservative
One of the lesser-known benefits of cinnamon powder is its ability to preserve food.
Because of its antibacterial and antioxidant capabilities, cinnamon can be used as a preservative without the need for chemical additives.
A recent study on the possible function of essential oils as preservatives identified cinnamon as the most effective against fungal growth.
Therefore, another study suggests that brushing with cinnamon extract could help stop the discoloration of vegetables and fruits that begin to rot due to oxidation.
4. Ceylon Cinnamon May Improve Blood Pressure
Cardiovascular diseases are responsible for most of the causes of death in the Western world.
In this context, high blood pressure plays a critical role not only as a symptom. Against this background, researchers found that Ceylon cinnamon can lower blood pressure in rats.
In addition, a comprehensive meta-analysis demonstrated that cinnamon consumption could lower triglyceride levels in type 2 diabetics and increase their HDL levels.
Since low levels of these blood lipids and high levels of “good cholesterol” are the best indicators for good heart health, this is a remarkable health benefit of cinnamon.
5. The Spice May Reduce Allergy Symptoms
Those of us who suffer from allergies may find relief thanks to the many bioactive compounds in cinnamon.
Animal studies have shown that cinnamon can help reduce common allergy symptoms. For example, it’s precisely the anti-inflammatory properties of cinnamon that counteract histamine responses.
In a further study, the polyphenols of the cinnamon extract could alleviate allergic rhinitis in mice.
6. Ceylon Cinnamon Offers Anti-Inflammatory Benefits
Studies show that this spice and its antioxidants have potent anti-inflammatory properties.
This property is especially beneficial since chronic inflammation promotes modern diseases such as cancer, type 2 diabetes, obesity, neurodegenerative, and heart diseases.
Furthermore, Ceylon cinnamon may also be beneficial in pain management. Accordingly, studies have shown that cinnamon helps reduce muscle soreness, menstrual and age-related pain.
7. The Spice Exerts Antibacterial Properties
Ceylon cinnamon also offers antibacterial benefits. Accordingly, cinnamaldehyde, the component of cinnamon essential oil that gives it its unique odor, can fight various bacteria.
Cinnamaldehyde targets the membrane of bacterial cells, which can destroy them.
8. Ceylon Cinnamon Benefits Your Brain Health
Whether you’re looking to prevent neurodegenerative diseases or boost your cognitive abilities, Ceylon cinnamon might be the proper remedy.
For example, one study found that cinnamon can improve neuroprotective proteins in the brain, suggesting a potentially successful application in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease.
Additionally, cinnamon could inhibit two significant markers of Alzheimer’s disease in a laboratory study.
Furthermore, Ceylon cinnamon improved the cognitive abilities of rats in which scientists previously induced cognitive decline. After taking the cinnamon extract, the rats’ memory improved significantly.
9. Cinnamon Is a Natural Antidepressant
A growing number of new studies suggest that cinnamon consumption may have a positive effect on mood.
For example, some researchers suggest using cinnamon essential oil as an adjunct therapy for depression and anxiety disorders.
Moreover, a red-hot study attributes antidepressant benefits to cinnamon. Since cinnamon inhibits the inflammatory process in the hippocampus, the body can increase serotonin to an optimal level there, according to scientists.
10. The Spice Helps Prevent Diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome
Insulin, as our essential storage hormone, is instrumental in metabolism. But, unfortunately, after refined carbohydrates dominate most diets, more and more people develop insulin resistance.
Insulin resistance is how our body protects itself from the high levels of insulin that these foods cause. If cells were too sensitive to excessive insulin levels, it could be life-threatening.
Insulin resistance is a primary pre-existing condition inducing metabolic syndrome and type-2-diabetes.
However, studies show that cinnamon has a positive effect on the essential factors of metabolic syndrome. For example, these include:
- Blood pressure
- Blood sugar
- Insulin resistance
Therefore, Ceylon cinnamon may subsequently be beneficial in weight loss.
Ceylon Cinnamon Benefits for Weight Loss
Healthy blood glucose is low but stable. Therefore, it can prevent insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes.
Because Ceylon cinnamon contains the polyphenol cinnamtannin B1, it can increase insulin sensitivity and thus counteract blood sugar spikes after a meal.
Also, researchers concluded that Ceylon cinnamon improves glucose metabolism and helps with weight loss.
Further cinnamon studies confirmed these results as their participants could increase muscle mass and reduce weight in the process.
Similarly, 84 women suffering from polycystic ovary syndrome successfully lost weight by taking cinnamon capsules for eight weeks only.
In addition, animal studies have shown that cinnamon helps mitigate glucose and insulin spikes after sugar consumption.
Ceylon Cinnamon Benefits for Your Hair
Although there are still relatively few studies on this, individual studies suggest that cinnamon may improve hair growth.
For example, in a recent study, researchers significantly increased the diameter and length of hair in male rats by applying cinnamon oil.
According to the researchers, cinnamon oil was able to stimulate blood flow to the scalp. Instrumental in this was the compound cinnamaldehyde, which could increase blood flow to the hair follicles, thus supporting hair growth.
On the other hand, the antifungal effect of cinnamon could also be beneficial for human hair.
Since cinnamon is effective against Malassezia, a type of fungus that is a common cause of dandruff, it may counteract its formation.
Ceylon Cinnamon Benefits for the Skin
Due to its antibiotic and antimicrobial properties, cinnamon may benefit skin health. For example, it can protect the skin from irritation, rashes, allergic reactions, or infections.
In this regard, studies confirm that applying cinnamon essential oil directly to the skin can even relieve inflammation, swelling, pain, and redness.
Moreover, many people swear by using cinnamon and honey together for:
- Skin allergies
Ceylon Offers the Most Health Benefits of Any Cinnamon
Ceylon cinnamon is one of the few spices that no pantry should be without. For example, even advocates of the Carnivore Diet use it from time to time.
Finally, its antioxidant power benefits blood sugar, heart, brain, and skin health. In addition, it helps to lose weight and curbs cravings.
For this reason, cinnamon is also a popular choice for intermittent fasting or ketogenic diets.
Nevertheless, it makes a difference what kind of cinnamon you buy. If you want to reap the full health benefits of cinnamon, look for Ceylon.
While more commonly available in supermarkets and cheaper, Indonesian and Cassia cinnamon provide fewer benefits and more potential side effects.
(Reference taken from https://www.mentalfoodchain.com/ceylon-cinnamon-benefits/)