Spices are always part of our daily lives. They make our dishes and foods taste even better. For me, nothing could go wrong with Cinnamon. Whether used in baking and pastry, from coffee add-ons to cooking viands.
Cinnamon has always become part of our daily lives and has become one of my favorite flavor too. I love its aroma and taste. It feels like my day is complete and perfect if I am able to eat something with Cinnamon in it.
Whenever I make my coffee at home, Cinnamon is always a part of it. Even with my Starbucks; it is not complete without being sprinkled with lots of Cinnamon. No matter how good the aroma of Cinnamon is for me; others do not have the palate for it. Nonetheless, Cinnamon has some health benefits and let me share it with you.
Let us get to know Cinnamon more. If you are not fond of it; you might change your mind and love it!
In this article, I will discuss some of the Ground Cinnamon Health Benefits.
What is Cinnamon –
Cinnamon is a spice obtained from the inner bark of trees scientifically known as Cinnamomum. It is an ingredient and its usage dates back as far as Ancient Egypt. Cinnamon used to be valuable and rare back then and was regarded as a gift fit for kings, royalties and other people of high status.
Nowadays, Cinnamon is already very common, affordable and readily available in every supermarket and used mainly as an aromatic, condiment and flavoring additive in different cuisines and recipes, sweet and savory dishes, breakfast cereals, tea, snack foods and traditional foods.
Types of Cinnamon:
- Ceylon Cinnamon – Also known as “True” cinnamon
- Cassia Cinnamon – The more common variety today and what we generally refer to as “cinnamon”
How is Cinnamon Made?
Cinnamon is made by cutting the stems of cinnamon trees. The inner bark is then extracted and the woody parts are removed.
They are then dried. When it dries, it forms strips that curl into rolls, called cinnamon sticks which when grounded produces the cinnamon powder.
The distinct smell and flavor of cinnamon are due to the oily part which is very high in compound called cinnamaldehyde. Scientists believe that this compound is responsible for most of cinnamon’s powerful effects on health and metabolism.
What is Cinnamon tree?
Cinnamon tree is a bushy evergreen tree which is about 2 – 3 meters tall. It thrives well in shaded places with average rainfall and without temperature extremes. Ideal temperature for production is between 27 to 30 degrees Celcius. Soil should not be waterlogged as this will produce a bitter-tasting bark. There are eight to ten side branches that grow on the bush and may be harvested after three years to get the cinnamon bark.
Ground Cinnamon Health Benefits –
There are lots of health benefits of Ground Cinnamon. To name a few:
Cinnamon is high in Cinnamaldehyde – a substance with powerful medicinal properties –
Cinnamon is a popular spice. It is high in cinnamaldehyde,(1)(an aldehyde that gives the cinnamon its flavor and odor found in its essential oil) which is thought to be responsible for most of cinnamon’s health benefits.
Cinnamon is loaded with antioxidants –
As we all know and as discussed in my previous articles, Antioxidants protect our body from oxidative damage caused by free radicals.
In one of the studies which compared the antioxidant activity of 26 spices, cinnamon ended up as the champion. It outranked “super foods” like oregano and garlic. (5)
It is even so powerful that cinnamon can also be used as a natural food preservative. (6)
Cinnamon has anti-inflammatory properties –
Inflammation helps our body fight infections and repair damaged tissues.
However, inflammation is a problem when it is chronic and when it is directed against your own body tissues.
The antioxidants found in Cinnamon have anti-inflammatory effects which may help lower the risk of diseases.
Cinnamon Lowers Blood Sugar Levels and Has a Powerful Anti-Diabetic Effect –
Cinnamon is well known for its blood-sugar-lowering properties.
Aside from the beneficial effects on insulin resistance, cinnamon can lower blood sugar by several other mechanisms.
Cinnamon has been shown to decrease the amount of glucose that enters your bloodstreams after meal.
The effective dose of Cinnamon is typically 1-6 grams or around 0.5-2 teaspoons per day.
Cinnamon Helps Fight Bacterial and Fungal Infections –
Cinnamaldehyde which is one of the main active components of cinnamon helps fight various kinds of infection.
The evidence is limited and so far cinnamon has not been shown to reduce infections elsewhere in the body.
It is the anti fungal and antibacterial properties of Cinnamaldehyde which reduces infections and help fights tooth decay and bad breath.
Healthy and Easy Recipes –
Chicken Stewed with Tomatoes, Cinnamon, and Preserved Lemon
Prep Time: 5 to 8 minutes
Cook Time: 32 minutes
- Chicken thighs and drumsticks, about 8 pieces
- 1 Onion, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 2 tsp. oregano
- 2 tsp. paprika
- 1 tbsp. coriander seeds
- 1 14 – oz can chopped tomatoes
- 2 preserved lemons, rinsed and chopped (pulp discarded)
- 1 stick cinnamon
- 1 cup water
- 2 tbsp. chopped parsley
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Saute the onion in the olive oil until soft in a french oven or a deep skillet. Add garlic, paprika, coriander seeds and oregano. Saute for another minute.
- Add tomato paste, tomatoes, water, cinnamon and preserved lemons. Mix well. Add the chicken. Cover the pan and simmer for 30 minutes.
- Add parsley. Taste to see if it needs salt. It should not because of the salt in the preserved lemons. However, if your taste buds preferred more salt then add salt and pepper to taste. Cook for another 5 minutes without the lid.
- Serve with rice or couscous.
Cinnamon Toast Crunch Pancakes
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 6 Extra Large Pancakes
- 3 cups pancake mix
- 2 cups Cinnamon Toast Crunch, crushed
- 2 cups Water
- 1/4 cup Cinnamon Toast Crunch
- 1 Tbsp. Cinnamon
- 6 Tbsps. cream cheese frosting
- Mix pancake batter as directed on package (our box indicated 2 cups of water; however follow your box instructions). Gradually add in 2 cups of crushed Cinnamon Toast Crunch to the batter.
- Make 6 extra large pancakes on a griddle or stove. Then spread 1 Tbsp of cream cheese frosting in between each pancake as you stack them.
- Top pancakes with 1 Tbsp. of Cinnamon Toast Crunch Cereal and 1 Tbsp of actual cinnamon. You may add your favorite syrup.
Cinnamon Raisin Oats
This recipe is best for breakfast.
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time: Overnight
- 1/2 cup oats (preferred: old – fashioned rolled oats)
- 1 tsp. pure maple syrup
- 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/2 cup milk of your choice
- 2 Tbsp raisins
- 2 Tbsp. chopped walnuts (optional or can be replaced any nuts of your choice)
- Combine oats, maple syrup and cinnamon in a small bowl or mason jar.
- Pour milk and thoroughly stir.
- Cover securely with plastic wrap or lid and place in a fridge overnight.
- Remove in the morning, Stir the oats then add raisins and walnuts (optional).