Boosts Brain Function: Smelling the scent of cinnamon can boost brain activity.
In research reported by whfoods.com, cinnamon “enhanced study participants’ cognitive processing,” with the following activities:
- Tasks related to attentional processes
- Virtual recognition memory
- Working memory
- Visual-motor speed while working on a computer-based program
Improved colon health and protection against heart disease:
Cinnamon is an excellent source of fiber, calcium and certain minerals, such as manganese.
Calcium and fiber combine to help remove bile salts from the body, which helps to protect the colon and reduce the risk of colon cancer.
Through this process, cholesterol levels may be lowered, helping prevent atherosclerosis and heart disease.
The fiber in cinnamon may also provide relief from constipation or diarrhea.
Cinnamon has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine, for its warming properties, such as during a cold or flu.
End Note: Differences between Ceylon cinnamon and Cassia Cinnamon:
“The two major types of cinnamon used in food preparation are Ceylon cinnamon and Cassia cinnamon. Ceylon cinnamon (Cinnamomum verum or Cinnamomum zeylanicum), native to Sri Lanka, is also known as “true cinnamon.” This is NOT the predominant spice typically sold as cinnamon in the United States. What is commonly found at your grocer is a closely related and less expensive variety called Cassia cinnamon. Cassia is native to Burma and also grown in China and Vietnam. Cassia is slightly darker in color compared to Ceylon, and has a stronger, more pungent flavor. While both Cassia and Ceylon are derived from the inner bark of Cinnamomum trees, Ceylon cinnamon is preferable. Ceylon cinnamon is considered a finer quality spice due to its sweeter, more delicate and complex flavor.
In addition to flavor, a critical difference between Ceylon and Cassia is the coumarin content of Cassia. Cassia cinnamon is the main source of coumarin in the human diet. Coumarin is a naturally occurring toxin which has the potential to damage the liver in high doses. Cassia contains high levels of coumarin, whereas Ceylon contains either undetectable levels or only traces of coumarin….
Recent studies have revealed that regularly consuming Cassia cinnamon powder could be problematic, resulting in potentially harmful levels of coumarin intake. For example, one study estimated that small children eating oatmeal sprinkled with cinnamon a few times a week would exceed the established safe upper limit of exposure. Similarly, they concluded that adults who are heavy consumers of culinary cinnamon or take powdered cinnamon supplements could also reach potentially unsafe doses.” – Choosing the Right Cinnamon, by Dr. Joel Fuhrman