Cinnamon is well known for its blood-sugar-lowering properties. Apart from the beneficial effects on insulin resistance, cinnamon can lower blood sugar by several other mechanisms. First, cinnamon has been shown to decrease the amount of glucose that enters your bloodstream after a meal.
It does this by interfering with numerous digestive enzymes, which slows the breakdown of carbohydrates in your digestive tract 14 , Second, a compound in cinnamon can act on cells by mimicking insulin 16 , This greatly improves glucose uptake by your cells, though it acts much slower than insulin itself. For more information on how you can lower your blood sugar levels, check out 15 easy ways to lower blood sugar levels naturally. Neurodegenerative diseases are characterized by progressive loss of the structure or function of brain cells.
Two compounds found in cinnamon appear to inhibit the buildup of a protein called tau in the brain, which is one of the hallmarks of Alzheimer's disease 21 , 22 , In a study in mice with Parkinson's disease, cinnamon helped protect neurons, normalized neurotransmitter levels and improved motor function Overall, the evidence is limited to test-tube and animal studies, which suggest that cinnamon extracts may protect against cancer 25 , 26 , 27 , 28 , It acts by reducing the growth of cancer cells and the formation of blood vessels in tumors and appears to be toxic to cancer cells, causing cell death.
A study in mice with colon cancer revealed that cinnamon is a potent activator of detoxifying enzymes in the colon, protecting against further cancer growth These findings were supported by test-tube experiments, which showed that cinnamon activates protective antioxidant responses in human colon cells Whether cinnamon has any effect in living, breathing humans needs to be confirmed in controlled studies. For a list of 13 foods that could potentially lower your risk of cancer, you might want to read this article.
Cinnamaldehyde, one of the main active components of cinnamon, may help fight various kinds of infection. It can also inhibit the growth of certain bacteria, including Listeria and Salmonella 32 , However, the evidence is limited and so far cinnamon has not been shown to reduce infections elsewhere in the body. The antimicrobial effects of cinnamon may also help prevent tooth decay and reduce bad breath 34 , Cinnamon extracted from Cassia varieties is thought to help fight against HIV-1, the most common strain of the HIV virus in humans 36 , A laboratory study looking at HIV-infected cells found that cinnamon was the most effective treatment of all 69 medicinal plants studied The Cassia variety contains significant amounts of a compound called coumarin, which is believed to be harmful in large doses.
10 Surprising Health Benefits of Cinnamon
All cinnamon should have health benefits, but Cassia may cause problems in large doses due to the coumarin content. You may be able to find Ceylon in some health food stores, and there is a good selection on Amazon. At the end of the day, cinnamon is one of the most delicious and healthiest spices on the planet.
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It may reduce pain linked to arthritis. Cinnamon has been shown in studies at the Department of Internal Medicine, Kangnam Korean Hospital, to reduce cytokines linked to arthritic pain. Research at the University of Texas, published in the journal Nutrition and Cancer , shows that cinnamon may reduce the proliferation of cancer cells , holding promise for cancer prevention and sufferers of the disease.
It contains fiber, calcium, iron, and manganese —albeit small amounts to the typical dose of ground cinnamon. Cinnamon contains a natural chemical called cinnamaldehyde, which studies show increases the hormone progesterone and decreases testosterone production in women, helping to balance hormones. Their research shows that cinnamon reduces chronic inflammation linked with these neurological disorders.
It works with sweet and savory dishes alike.
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cinnamon - Wiktionary
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