The warm, pacifying aroma of cinnamon brought it to the leaders of the most beloved spices. It was appreciated even by the representatives of the ancient civilizations of China, India, Egypt, not only as a spice, but also as a powerful healing agent. She even won a mention in Ayurveda, an Indian treatise on health.
Later, the bark of the evergreen tree Cinnamon conquered Europe - at first as an exotic spice. But already in the XVII century it is mentioned in medical books. Medicine, exploring the beneficial properties of this product, has officially confirmed a number of healing effects on the body, tested by folk experience several centuries ago.
Ceylon cinnamon has beneficial effects on many organs and systems of the human body. The therapeutic effect is exerted by chopped spice, cinnamon tree oil, its aroma.
|Body system||Cinnamon action||Therapeutic effect|
|Heart||Tones up the heart muscle, increases the depth and number of heart contractions.||Strengthens the heart, reduces the risk of heart attack and the occurrence of complications on the heart with influenza.|
|Vessels||It dilutes blood, prevents the formation of cholesterol plaques.||Reduces the likelihood of stroke, thrombosis and the development of atherosclerosis.|
|Improves blood circulation.||It weakens bouts of headache, migraine.|
|Digestive system||Stimulates the secretion of digestive juice.||It activates the stomach, helps with gastritis with low acidity.|
|It has a choleretic effect.||Improves digestion, helps to remove stones from the gall bladder, has a beneficial effect on the liver.|
|Respiratory system||Promotes the removal of sputum from the respiratory tract.||It makes breathing easier when coughing, including chronic, asthma, tuberculosis.|
|Eliminates inflammatory processes.||Helps treat bronchitis and pneumonia.|
|ENT organs||It has antioxidant, antibacterial, antiviral properties. It has an antipyretic, diaphoretic, analgesic effect.||Helps in the treatment and alleviates the symptoms of acute respiratory infections, acute respiratory viral infections, influenza, tonsillitis, tonsillitis, pharyngitis, migraine. Relieves swelling of the nasal mucosa, fever, headache.|
|Urinary system||It has a diuretic effect.||Cleans the kidneys of stones, contributing to the dissolution of large crystals, washing small stones and sand. Eliminates edema of cardiac and renal etymology.|
|The immune system||Saturates the body with vitamins A, E, B, PP, C, K, as well as potassium, sodium, zinc, phosphorus, copper, manganese and selenium, iron, calcium, magnesium.||Supports and restores the immune system, helps to quickly cope with colds, viral diseases, flu.|
|Metabolism||Accelerates metabolic processes, reduces blood sugar.||Useful for diabetes, interferes with weight gain.|
|Nervous system||Stimulates the production of CREB protein.||Increases the cognitive resource of the brain, improves memory.|
|Suppresses the production of alpha protein of the 5-subunit of the GABA-A receptor.||Eliminates anxiety, anxiety, improves mood, contributes to the treatment of depression.|
|Skin covering||It has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial effects, prevents infection and stimulates recovery processes.||Relieves irritation, treats burns, frostbite, trophic ulcers, bedsores, purulent wounds, scabies.|
|Oral cavity||It has analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects.||Relieves toothache, heals gum disease, eliminates bad breath.|
- It has an antispasmodic effect, therefore it is recommended for painful menstruation. It can reduce irritability in the premenstrual period, give vitality.
- Constant use stabilizes the menstrual cycle, enhances libido.
- Overweight. Accelerates metabolic processes, removes excess fluid, stimulates the gastrointestinal system. The complex makes it effective and safe for weight loss. It can reduce appetite if it is increased due to stress.
- For the care of appearance. Cinnamon oil is used in recipes to improve the condition. hair, facial skin, in the fight against cellulite.
- From prostatitis. Antimicrobial properties eliminate pathogenic microflora that cause diseases of the urinary and reproductive organs: urethritis, prostatitis, candidiasis. Stimulates blood circulation in the pelvic organs. Prophylactic use reduces the risk of prostate inflammation.
- Heart attack prevention. One of the reasons for frequent heart attacks after 40 years in men is excessive blood viscosity. Cinnamon liquefies it.
- Aphrodisiac. The aroma evokes sexual desire, increases the sensitivity of erogenous zones.
- With high mental stress. Improves cognitive functions, memory, concentration. This makes it useful for students, especially when preparing for exams.
- During the autumn and spring epidemics of influenza and SARS. The ability of cinnamon to restore immunity increases the body's resistance to viral and bacterial infections.
Harm and contraindications
Cassia cinnamon is really harmful, while Ceylon cinnamon is contraindicated only in individual cases. The difference in the concentration of the toxic substance coumarin, which is contained in both species. In Ceylon, it is 0.002% of the weight, in Cassia - 0.2%. Coumarin negatively affects the liver.
The properties of Ceylon spice, which is useful in some diseases, may be harmful in others. Contraindications:
- With a stomach ulcer, gastritis with high acidity - enhances the secretion of gastric juice.
- People with a sick heart suffering from hypertension are stimulated by heart contractions and blood circulation.
- People with low blood coagulation, when taking medications that thin the blood, have the same property.
- Pregnant - stimulates the muscles of the uterus.
- People with individual intolerance.
- Children under three years old.
How and how much to take cinnamon
For weight loss
Cinnamon consumption at home is limited to half a teaspoon per day. Usually, all recipes assume this exact volume. If a large dose is indicated, then one portion should be consumed in a few days.
The ability to accelerate metabolic processes makes it an excellent fat burning product. For the best effect, you can combine with other products that are useful for the figure.
- Ginger. It has a stimulating effect on metabolic processes. A piece of ginger root is cleaned and ground, cinnamon powder is added, and a liter of boiling water is added. Insist until cool, closing the container with the solution with a lid and wrapping it well. Drink strained infusion before meals in ½ cup. Keep refrigerated.
- Kefir. Improves digestion, which is important in the fight against excess weight, well satisfies hunger. A glass of low-fat kefir with cinnamon is an excellent dietary breakfast.
- Cottage cheese. It is useful for losing weight ladies, and spice, replacing sugar, will create a delicious dessert.
- Honey. A tablespoon is mixed with cinnamon, pour ½ cup hot, but not boiling water. Insist, wrapped in a towel, 40-60 minutes. Drink after meals for 14 days, then take a break of 12-14 days and repeat the cycle.
- Bay leaf. Useful for weight loss, as it cleanses the body of toxic substances, lowers cholesterol. Ground cinnamon and 4 bay leaves are poured with a liter of boiling water. Insist 2 hours. Take ½ cup before breakfast. Store in the refrigerator.
Cinnamon is sometimes perceived as a product harmful to the figure, since the main food association that arises with it is buns and desserts. But you should not think that her companions are only sweets forbidden during the diet. It goes well with many dishes, even meat.
The calorie content of the spice is quite high - 260 kcal per 100 grams, but since it can be eaten only 2 grams per day, the maximum that can be obtained is 5.2 kcal.
When spice powder is added to the drink not for medicinal but for culinary purposes, such a volume is not needed. A little bit of spice is also able to give aroma to a cup of coffee - on the tip of a knife.
With various diseases
Since medical prescriptions also include ½ teaspoon of cinnamon, people who are simultaneously treated and lose weight should reduce the dose.
To improve the digestive system, prevention of diseases of the cardiovascular, genitourinary system, normalize the menstrual cycle, cinnamon should be used regularly, adding as a seasoning. The dose depends on the particular dish, but should not exceed the daily norm. An approximate calculation that you should focus on is 1 teaspoon per kilogram of meat.
For colds and viral diseases:
- To stimulate immunity, treat throat, it is useful to drink tea with cinnamon (on the tip of a knife) and a slice of lemon with zest. You can enhance the effect by adding ginger, raspberries, honey to tea.
- When coughing, it is recommended to take seasoning with honey. Take a teaspoon of cinnamon and honey per liter of boiling water, add a little ground black pepper. Drink in small doses (liter - for 2 days) at intervals of 4 hours. The second option is to mix directly with honey. Take 5 days.
- To ease coughing, inhalation with cinnamon essential oil can be done. It will take 2-3 drops per procedure.
- For the treatment of tonsillitis, pharyngitis, tonsillitis, use a spice for gargling. Take 1 teaspoon per 250 ml of warm water.
- With hypothermia, a 20-minute bath with a couple of cinnamon spoons is taken to prevent colds.
- With diabetes, add to tea or kefir. When taken with a fermented milk product, wait 30 minutes, then drink.
- Depression is treated by smell. 2-3 drops of cinnamon oil are added to the aroma lamp.
Pregnancy is not an absolute contraindication to cinnamon, but the danger arises with regular use or exceeding doses. One-time, non-systematic cases of adding a pinch of powder to a drink, eating baked goods with spice can not harm the fetus. However, it is best to consult a doctor.
It is useful to use spice essential oil to flavor the room - this improves mood, relieves anxiety, irritability, gives vigor, and reduces fatigue. But do not forget that pregnant women can have a negative reaction to almost any smell.
Folk recipes for the beauty of the body, skin and hair
The ability of cinnamon to enhance blood circulation is useful in healing facial skin, removing pallor, strengthening and preventing hair loss, and preventing cellulite. The antiseptic properties of the product make it useful for eliminating papillomas and warts, fungal infections of the skin.
For facial skin
- Rejuvenation. Mash the third part of a banana with half a spoon of lemon juice, two tablespoons of sour cream, a teaspoon of cinnamon. Apply on face, hold for a quarter of an hour, rinse with warm water.
- Skin color improvement. Add 2 drops of spice essential oil to a spoon of almond or peach oil. Stir, apply a thin layer on the skin. After partially absorbing the oil, remove the excess with a cotton swab.
Cellulite scrub.In 100 g of vegetable oil add a teaspoon of cinnamon and 2 tablespoons of sugar. Mix the mixture. Apply with light, massaging movements to areas prone to cellulite. Massage for 20 minutes, then wash off the scrub with soap.
- Growth stimulation, hair strengthening. Add a tablespoon of cinnamon and egg yolk to a glass of kefir, mix thoroughly. Apply to clean hair, spreading over the scalp. After half an hour, wash off the mask, ideally - without shampoo.
- Elimination of brittle hair, giving shine. Three tablespoons of vegetable oil (preferably coconut, optimally burdock or castor, olive can be used), mix a tablespoon of honey and cinnamon, apply over the entire length of the hair and scalp. Wash off after 30 minutes.
- For weakened hair. Dilute to the consistency of sour cream 4 teaspoons of blue clay, add the yolk, 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil, 2 teaspoons of spice powder, a pinch of ground red pepper. The mixture is applied after washing the hair, wraps the head, withstand 15-30 minutes depending on the sensations. If burning and discomfort occurs, wash off earlier.
Cinnamon in cooking
Cinnamon is actively used in all world cuisines. The popularity of tart spices is associated with a pronounced sweet aroma, which, depending on the growing conditions, may have chocolate, honey, floral, even resinous notes.
Traditionally, it is used in baking and confectionery - classic cinnabon buns, christmas cookies, jelly, ice cream, jam, berry mousses. And also for flavoring coffee, tea, mulled wine, grog, cocoa, cocktails.
Spice is used as seasoning for fish, meat, vegetable, mushroom dishes, soups, sausages, pastes, cereals.
It goes well with dairy and sour-milk products, a large number of fruits - with all citrus fruits, apples, pears. Good companions of cinnamon are ginger, vanilla, nutmeg, cloves, cardamom, coriander, rosemary, patchouli, thyme.
Antibacterial properties allow it to be used as a preservative, added to perishable products, for the preparation of marinades, when preserving vegetables, fruits, mushrooms, meat.
There are 3 varieties of spices:
- Ceylon (cinnamon).
- Chinese (cassia, indian or fake).
- Malabar (Himalayan cinnamon, Indian laurel, brown or wood cinnamon).
Cinnamon is considered a high-class spice; it has the most delicate taste and aroma. It is she who has useful properties that are valued in medicine, cooking, cosmetology.
Malabar cinnamon has a faint aroma and, unlike sweet Ceylon, has a bitter and pungent flavor.
The taste and aroma of cassia is the sharpest. Most often, it is it that is sold widely available under the name "cinnamon."
To distinguish cinnamon and cassia in appearance is very simple:
- The color of the Chinese spice sticks is dark brown, and the Ceylon sticks are light yellow.
- It’s easy to break the cinnamon stick with your hands, from which its edges look slightly “shabby”. It is impossible to “grind cassia in a mortar or coffee grinder”, and the edge of the tube is even.
- The layer thickness of the two species is very different. In Ceylon, it is less than a millimeter, in Cassia - about 2 mm.
Ceylon spice obtained from bark Cinnamomum verum, one of the species of cinnamon tree belonging to the Laurel family, whose homeland is Sri Lanka, India, China. This is an evergreen tree, reaching a height of 15 meters, but for the production of spices use the bark of young shoots of two-year-old trees. They grow culture in other countries - Indonesia, Brazil, Guinea, Cambodia, Jamaica, Madagascar, Martinique. But most of the supplies are provided by Sri Lanka.
For the production of cassia, another type of tree is used - Cinnamomum cassia, which grows in southern China, Indochina, Sri Lanka, Sumatra, Java.
Cinnamon essential oil is obtained from the young shoots and leaves of Cinnamomum verum. Production requires a lot of raw materials - the proportion of oil is 1-1.5% of the weight of the processed mass.
It has a sweet, spicy, balsamic taste with a bitter hue.For medicinal purposes it is used for external purposes, inside, for aromatherapy.
The aroma of oil has a beneficial effect on the patient's psycho-emotional state, pacifying, creating a sense of security, reducing anxiety. Enhances the effect of peppermint oil.
It harmoniously combines with aromas of essential oils of ylang-ylang, juniper, fir, myrtle, lavender, sage, rose, rosemary, orange, grapefruit, mandarin, bergamot, tea tree, myrrh.
Doctors say cinnamon
Official medicine has already recognized a number of medicinal properties of cinnamon.
- At a conference of the American Heart Association devoted to cardiac pathologies, experimental data were presented confirming that spice slows down the process of gaining fat mass, therefore, the risk of heart disease is reduced. Thanks to cinnamon, you can lower your blood sugar and insulin levels. Its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties have been confirmed.
- The results of experiments on rodents, conducted by scientists from the medical center of the University of Rush in Chicago in 2016, showed that taking the spice improves memory, learning abilities, and prevents the development of Parkinson's disease.
- In a 2014 study by the University of Arizona, it was confirmed that cinnamon helps treat colon cancer due to its high content of cinnamaldehyde.
- In 2003, Merkoll and Campbell, representatives of the American Diabetes Association, proved the ability of cinnamon to reduce blood sugar and cholesterol, prevent blood clots, and increase vascular elasticity.
The spice, excellent in culinary qualities, is also a valuable food supplement useful in the treatment and prevention of many diseases. However, like any powerful remedy, it can do harm. You need to remember about moderation in use and contraindications. It is important to take Ceylon cinnamon, and only natural cinnamon oil. Treatment or care for the appearance with the help of this amazing tool can deliver a pleasure.