Jenny Chin, HK BioTek Intern
Cinnamon is a commonly used spice in cooking and baking. Not only does it add another element of flavor to food, it also has beneficial health properties when it is consumed (3). The spice contains a compound, cinnamaldehyde, responsible for providing the health effects (1).
Consuming cinnamon can help fight infections, reduce inflammation and the risks of developing disease (1). It is also a powerful antioxidant that can be used against oxidative damage from free radicals (1). In previous studies, cinnamon has been linked to a reduction in heart disease by decreasing the levels of total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and triglycerides while not affecting HDL cholesterol (1). For those who have Type 2 Diabetes or Metabolic Syndrome, cinnamon can improve sensitivity to insulin, an important hormone for transporting blood sugar in the body (1). In another study using mice, cinnamon has shown potential in assisting with the protection of neurons and motor function improvement (1). This could help the individuals affected by neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases (3).
Cinnamon can be utilized in different ways. It can be taken in powder form, sticks boiled into tea, Ceylon cinnamon tea or droplets of bark oil into food or drinks (2). However, precautions must be taken into consideration since high amounts of cinnamon can lead to toxicity.
"10 Evidence-Based Health Benefits of Cinnamon." RSS 20. N.p., 02 Dec. 2014. Web. 02 Aug. 2016. <https://authoritynutrition.com/10-proven-benefits-of-cinnamon/>.
"BEST WAY TO TAKE CINNAMON FOR DIABETES." Best Way To Take Cinnamon For Diabetes & Other Health Benefits. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Aug. 2016. <http://www.cinnamonvogue.com/cinnamon_for_diabetes.html>.
Rao, Pasupuleti Visweswara, and Siew Hua Gan. "Cinnamon: A Multifaceted Medicinal Plant." Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine : ECAM. Hindawi Publishing Corporation, 10 Apr. 2014. Web. 03 Aug. 2016. <http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4003790/>.