The benefits and properties of cinnamon are numerous: it is antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and disinfectant, it fights against acne, slows down aging, improves digestion and stimulates appetite, helps to lose weight, reduces pain, stimulates brain functions …
The cinnamon is the bottom of the shell containing the branches of the cinnamon. The green plant is about 10 meters high, although in cultivation it adopts a shrub-shaped size. It is known to all as a famous spice that gives our meals its delicious characteristic flavor. It is usually always an important axis by which different types of dishes are created.
What is cinnamon?
Also, the most important thing about it is its grayish brown bark with a stem of a woody consistency. Regarding its leaves, it should be said that they are oval and pointed, greenish and shiny, which have measurements that usually vary from 7 to 25 cm x 3.8 cm.
Its fruit is an ellipsoidal berry of about 30 cm of dark color with a seed inside.
It is very important to make it clear that there are two types of cinnamon. According to nutrition expert Y vonne Obispo – Weston we can find Cassia cinnamon and Ceylon cinnamon.
- Cassia Cinnamon : This helps to balance blood sugar levels with type 2 diabetes sufferers. It also contains high levels of coumarin, something that can be harmful to our body if we eat it in large quantities.
- Ceylon Cinnamon : The most recommended and which we will talk about below. It has the same benefits as the previous one and in addition to being a much more powerful antioxidant (high levels of vitamin C) it does not show the same percentage of coumarin in its composition, being much less high and therefore becoming the most beneficial of the pair.
To differentiate them, it should be noted that when going to a spice market, the former is clearly distinguished because it is much more powerful olfactory speaking while the Ceylon will be sharper and finer.
The extraction of cinnamon is carried out by extracting one of its internal barks, peeling it and rubbing its branches. This, as is popularly known, is usually used for all kinds of meals, but especially for making desserts and different types of sweets, something that we will talk about in more detail below.
Health benefits of cinnamon
1- Antiseptic and disinfectant properties
It helps to improve our skin, disinfecting it and getting to eliminate in a natural way the different fungi and bacteria that settle on the skin.
Especially cinnamon is focused on those that are located in the areas of the feet and nails, in addition to acting against the appearance of ulcers in the mouth and vaginal infections in women.
2- Anti inflammatory function
Specialists agree that a regularized intake of cinnamon can sometimes alleviate the pain of various discomforts, which makes it also perfect for tired muscles to relax after a hard day of exercise.
As a curiosity, a perfect combination of a hot water bath, cinnamon and a couple of drops of honey is recommended to achieve maximum relaxation.
A tip that is usually made is its consumption during the menstrual period, as it is something that makes the pain go down considerably.
3- Fight acne
Cleanses and prepares our skin from impurities for the arrival of grains. This is due to its antibacterial and antimicrobial properties.
You can prepare a face mask with cinnamon and honey for about 15 minutes to achieve amazing results. Lastly, don’t forget to remove it with a little warm water.
So if you are, or know someone who is entering the adolescent stage, do not forget to “prescribe” a little cinnamon.
4- Slows down aging
As mentioned in previous sections, thanks to the high levels of vitamin C (one of the best antioxidants that exist), a slowing down process occurs, causing us to age in a much more leisurely way. Of course, this is only possible if it is done with a regular and practically daily intake.
5- Powerful remedy against colds
It is enough with half a tablespoon of cinnamon along with another of honey two to three times a day. Besides the cold it also helps prevent congestion.
6- Better digestion and stimulates the appetite
On the one hand, cinnamon makes our digestion improve, in addition to eliminating flatulence and gas. On the other, it has been proven to stimulate our appetite, which makes our desire to eat be enhanced.
7- Helps to lose weight
If it is mixed with a tea and we add a laurel one, we will create an infallible trick to lose weight that has been extended for many years. This should be combined with the rest of the balanced diet and physical exercise for optimal results.
This function is due to the fact that it prevents the platelets found in the blood from accumulating. It helps a better blood circulation, which causes better oxygenation in the cells and therefore a much more precise and productive functioning of our body, lightening and transforming the blood into something much more liquid and not as thick as it can be on many occasions.
9- Stimulates brain functions
According to a study carried out by Dr. P. Zoladz of the Association for Chemoreception Sciences of Florida in the United States, I came to the conclusion that cinnamon helped to generate a greater number of connections in the brain. This occurs in such a way that it is in the elderly where it is created most effectively.
The areas of the brain that it empowers are those related to attention, memory and visual speed and recognition.
10- Reduces pain and discomfort of the joints
Again we resort to vitamin C, which works as an antioxidant leading to a better life for our bones and joints, especially for patients with osteoarthritis, arthritis, osteoarthritis, etc …
11- Type 2 diabetes
Through a series of experiments related to the benefits it can produce in patients with this type of diabetes, it was concluded that it helps to lower glucose levels in the blood.
This is thanks to a component called cinnamtannin. How much is recommended? With half a teaspoon a total of twice a day the desired effect could be achieved.
Different scientific studies have already confirmed that cinnamon increases glucose uptake and glycogen synthesis.
12- Avoid and smooth varicose veins
Something very useful when we talk about its characteristics. Cinnamon is a powerful antiplatelet, antisclerotic and antithrombotic.
13- Aphrodisiac functions
The specialists unanimously agree that it is one of the best and most powerful aphrodisiacs that exist. Along with chocolate, it is part of the list of foods that most help stimulate the area of the brain responsible for this stimulation.
History of cinnamon
It has been almost 5000 years ago, more specifically in 2800 BC. C., the words Cinnanmomun Zeylanicum began to be mentioned in the writings, which in Greek meant sweet wood.
Later, in Italy it would be called canella, which would later derive in its current name. Canella could be translated as “small tube”, which referred to the shape that the stem took when the area of the belonging branch dried up.
They are created on the shores of the Indian Sea, exactly on an island located in southern India called Sri Lnaka, in Celián.
For its correct growth, a hot and humid tropical climate typical of the areas of South America, Africa and Asia is needed. The ideal degrees are usually between 24 and 30 per month with rainfall of 2000 to 4000 mm per year. As for the altitude, the perfect parameters should be between 0 and 600 meters above sea level.
In its composition we find different types of substances. Mainly a component that is majority called cinnamic aldehyde, in addition to eugenol and ciamic alcohol. Now, among the minerals that stand out the most, we find magnesium, iron, calcium, and rich sources of fiber and especially vitamin C.
It is precisely in this last vitamin, C, which translates as one of the largest and most powerful antioxidants that can be found in food and different edibles. It fights with free radicals and slows down the natural aging process that cells possess.
Its powerful aroma contains essential oil that varies from 0.5 to 2.5%, which also includes thermogenic properties, which helps us to accelerate the burning of fat, making you lose weight in a more optimal way.
What is cinnamon for?
Its use and consumption is widely spread throughout the world, but it is in the area of South America where it really triumphs. One of its most common uses is to combine it with a tea, resulting in cinnamon tea, typical of Mexico, Ecuador, Chile or Colombia, even reaching the southern United States.
If we talk about Spain in particular, it is used to make traditional dishes such as blood sausage from Aranda, as well as being one of the fundamental ingredients for rice pudding.
In the Dominican Republic its use is very widespread when making a Mmajuana, a national liquor of high consumption, while Venezuelans use it as a dressing for chicha and majarete, a traditional dessert typical of the country.
In Ecuador and Colombia an infusion of liquor is prepared that is known as canelazo, which is served hot and serves as a recipe to combat the cold seasons.
If we cross the Pacific Ocean and we are in Asia, we see how its use is also very widespread. This is because the famous spice is usually integrated into a multitude of dishes. We can find several forms such as cinnamon in powder and leaf form that serve as an ingredient to create the different varieties that exist of curries, in addition to other types of varieties typical of China and Ceylon.
And what other benefits of cinnamon do you know?