- Supports healthy blood sugar levels.
- Promotes good digestive function.
- Supports healthy circulation, heart health, and even dental hygiene.
An age-old spice used around the world for intense flavor, cinnamon has shown a multitude of health benefits, too. For starters, cinnamon possesses powerful antioxidant activity. It provides good doses of manganese, fiber, iron, and calcium as well.
Cinnamon has most recently been studied for supporting healthy blood sugar levels in Type II diabetics. The active ingredient in cinnamon includes the chemical hydroxychalcone, which is thought to enhance the effect of insulin. More specifically, hydroxychalcone is thought to spur insulin receptors to increase insulin sensitivity and help promote glucose uptake into cells and tissues.
Another active ingredient in cinnamon, proanthocyanidin, is thought to infiltrate cells and activate insulin receptors, therefore helping to maintain healthy insulin balance. This activation helps instigate chemical reactions necessary for cells to use energy from sugar.
Cinnamon also appears to slow post-meal blood sugar spikes by slowing the rate by which food from the stomach empties into the small intestine. This slowing is thought to support both healthy blood sugar levels (by preventing insulin surges) and gastrointestinal comfort by not straining the digestive system. Cinnamon has also been shown to maintain healthy blood insulin levels and LDL levels. A pretty cell-friendly little spice!
Cinnamon supports healthy circulation by bringing blood from the center of the body to the skin. This mechanism may decrease blood pressure. Healthy circulation is particularly important to aging bodies, which may be carrying a few extra pounds or not getting enough exercise. Healthy circulation is essential for keeping oxygen and nutrients flowing throughout the body, as well as maintaining healthy veins and arteries.
Also, Cinnamon supports a healthy mouth environment. It has been shown to help fight bad breath while promoting healthy gums and teeth!
The benefits of cinnamon are still being discovered, and are expanding to immune, menstrual, and cellular health.
- If you are a diabetic, monitoring blood sugar when taking cinnamon is especially important, as cinnamon may intensify the effects of insulin medications.
- Cinnamon may have an anti-clotting effect on the blood, so if you are currently taking medications with similar effects, please consult your healthcare professional before beginning to take cinnamon.