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Amazing Benefits Of Cinnamon (+5 Refreshing Recipes)

Amazing Benefits Of Cinnamon (+5 Refreshing Recipes)

We are very familiar with cinnamon as a spice used all around the world, but did you know that cinnamon actually has a lot of proven health benefits? This fine spice has been used for millennia—there are records of cinnamon in the diets of people who lived in ancient Egypt and India. Furthermore, old Chinese recipes include cinnamon, underlining its undisputable benefits for a healthy life.

A German study has shown that cinnamon indeed has many properties that have a relieving effect on an array of health issues. Cinnamon acts as an anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial medicine, as well as having a mild effect on the cardiovascular system, among other uses.

Although originally from Southeast Asia, cinnamon has conquered the whole world. If you’re interested in understanding why this is, check out our list of 10 amazing benefits of cinnamon.

Disputed benefits of cinnamon

Before we start our list, we would like to point out that cinnamon has made its way into the lore of many cultures. This spice has achieved great fame throughout the centuries, and there are naturally many myths and legends surrounding the capabilities of cinnamon.

One of the biggest debates has risen from the belief that cinnamon can induce the creation of insulin and in other ways help those suffering from diabetes. Probably the most significant problem is the lack of serious medical research on humans. There was a review done in Sri Lanka (the most famous producer of cinnamon) about various studies done on animals, and the results, although encouraging, were inconclusive because of the lack of clinical trials.

The U.S. Department of Health has noted a lack of studies in people that can support the use of cinnamon in treating any medical condition. Nevertheless, there are still many health benefits that cinnamon has to offer that have stood the test of time—the most important test of all.

1. Anti-inflammation

One of the most prominent assets of cinnamon is that it is an anti-inflammatory partly thanks to cinnamaldehyde (a substance that can be found in cinnamon). An Iranian study has proven that cinnamon can reduce inflammation and muscle soreness.

Because of its ability to lower swelling and inflammation, cinnamon can be very beneficial in managing various kinds of pain, such as PMS pain, allergy-related pain, and many types of pain related to aging.

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Chronic inflammation can be a cause for the development of acute neurodegenerative diseases (Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, meningitis, etc.). This may be why in Asia, where spices are regularly consumed, certain neurodegenerative diseases aren’t as common as in the US.

2. Boosting brain power

As recent researchers imply, there seems to be a direct link between the scent of cinnamon and brain functionality. More accurately, cinnamon scent improves attention span, recognition memory, visual-motoric capabilities (response speed), and working memory.

The scent of cinnamon has even surpassed the famed peppermint and jasmine when it comes to boosting cognitive function.

An interesting fact about cinnamon is that cinnamon-flavored gum delivers the same benefits when chewed. It may seem a bit unrealistic, but chewing cinnamon can really make you smarter.

3. Soothing for sore throats

Soothing a sore throat or “coating” is a wish made by anyone who has ever come down with a cold. Did you know that cinnamon can be a real help in these situations?

The method is quite simple. Take a few cinnamon sticks and soak them in water for a short period of time. If you do it right, you will create a cinnamon water filled with a type of fiber called mucilage. The mucilage is what coats your throat as it dissolves in the water to relieve your throat pain.

Cinnamon can also help people suffering from bacterial infections that are commonly found in the throat due to its antibacterial capabilities. Centuries-old traditional Chinese medicine has long been using cinnamon as a cure for phlegmy coughs.

4. Antibacterial properties

Cinnamon is an impressive and potent antibacterial agent. According to a recent study conducted in Hong Kong, cinnamon sticks have strong antibacterial properties that are effective against foodborne bacteria. It has been proven that cinnamon can be used to preserve food even when it comes to dangerous bacteria like Salmonella and Escherichia coli.

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The same properties are possible to exploit to defend the human body from illnesses. The secret lies within cinnamon oils that are used in many cultures to boost the immune system with a natural way to fight harmful infections.

Cinnamon oils are so powerful in boosting immunity that scientists are conducting studies surrounding the possibility of it reducing the risk of contracting HIV.

5. Steady supply of antioxidants

Antioxidants are molecules that inhibit the oxidation process within other molecules. In layman’s terms, antioxidants act as a safety against cellular damage, thus slowing down the aging process. There are 41 different types of antioxidants that scientists have found in cinnamon.

On the scale used to measure the amounts of antioxidants in various foods (the OTAC scale), cinnamon ranks number 7 of all types of food, spice, and herbs anywhere on the planet. When compared to other spices, cinnamon has more antioxidants than garlic, rosemary, and oregano, which are all famous for being very healthy.

When it comes to cinnamon, most of the health benefits come from polyphenols, phenolic acid, and flavonoids.

6. Breath freshener

It is proven that the extracts from cinnamon can protect your mouth against bacteria that are the main cause of tooth decay, cavities, mouth infections, and bad breath. Essential oils made from cinnamon act as a natural mouthwash with antibacterial properties.

Cinnamon, much like peppermint, is used as a natural flavor that is added to chewing gums because of its mouth refreshing capabilities. By fighting oral bacteria, cinnamon removes bad breath naturally without the need to use any unhealthy chemicals. This is the reason why traditional medicine uses cinnamon to cure toothaches and mouth sores.

Beauty products, shampoos, and perfumes also have portions of cinnamon because of its health benefits and pleasant smell.

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7. Treatment or prevention of candida

Long it was suspected that because of its anti-fungal properties, cinnamon could be very effective in battling with candida growth in the digestive tract. Scientists have confirmed that cinnamon lowers the amounts of Candida Albicans (yeast responsible for candida overgrowth) that can cause damage to the digestive and autoimmune symptoms.

Also, by reducing the levels of blood sugar, cinnamon indirectly lessens the risk of candida.

Researchers have confirmed that patients who were given cinnamon extracts and essential oils showed reduced levels of candida and an improvement in symptoms. By improving the immune system and fighting inflammation in the body, cinnamon reduces the risk of candida-related illnesses.

8. Cinnamon improves skin health

Daily application of oil that contains cinnamon essence can provide a mild solution to irritation, skin allergies, and all kinds of inflammation. When combined with honey, cinnamon makes a very popular and efficient mixture (which can be used as food as well), which will help you feel much better regardless of the skin problem that you might be having. When brought down to a molecular level, cinnamon’s essence bonds with the skin molecules efficiently, thus providing a sensation of relaxation in the tissue. Many cosmetic issues can be solved with cinnamon—rosacea, pimples, and marks from scars.

9. Cinnamon keeps allergies at bay

Thanks to the advantages of the cinnamon’s compounds, studies have concluded that those with allergies can finally find relief. It’s been confirmed that cinnamon is effective in fighting against common allergy symptoms since it reduces infection and fights against histamine effects in the body. Also, for the same reason, it prevents symptoms of asthma attacks. Cinnamon is also beneficial for digestive health, and it has immune-boosting abilities, which assist in cutting down on autoimmune reactions that can affect the body after consuming common allergens.

10. Cinnamon lowers your LDL (bad cholesterol)

Cinnamon reduces the effects of fat-saturated meals in junk food, which makes those occasional binges not so dangerous. With just one small spoon of cinnamon before your junk meal, you’ll have a lessened reaction and reduced cholesterol. Cinnamon does this by growing the levels of HDL (good) cholesterol in the blood and reducing the presence of bad cholesterol, LDL. This is achieved by affecting the blood glucose and the way your body processes it. Both diabetes patients and people with higher cholesterol can experience a multitude of benefits from adding cinnamon to their diets.

Bonus: 5 Refreshing Recipes

Cinnamon Dolce Iced Coffee

Benefits of Cinnamon - Bonus recipe - Dolce Iced Coffee

    via Kitchentreaty.com

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    Cinnamon Ice Cream

    Cinnamon-Ice-Cream

      via Shariblogs.com

      Chocolate-Cinnamon Pudding with Raspberries

      shutterstock_170382518

        Cinnamon Rice Milk

        shutterstock_70402096

          Freezer Cinnamon Rolls

          Bonus Recipe - Cinnamon rolls

            via Myrecipes.com

            Featured photo credit: Chamille White via shutterstock.com

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            Dejan Kvrgic

            Blogger, Writer

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            Last Updated on November 11, 2019

            How to Improve Memory and Boost Your Brainpower

            How to Improve Memory and Boost Your Brainpower

            Have you ever noticed that some people are able to effortlessly remember even the most mundane details and quickly comprehend new things? Well, you can too!

            To unlock the full potential of your brain, you need to keep it active and acute. Wasting time on your couch watching mindless television shows or scrolling through facebook is not going to help.

            Besides getting out flashcards, what can you do to help remember things better and learn new things more quickly? Check out these 10 effective ways on how to improve memory:

            1. Exercise and Get Your Body Moving

            Exercising doesn’t just exercise the body, it also helps to exercise your brain. Obesity and the myriad of diseases that eventually set in as a result of being overweight can cause serious harm to the brain.

            Furthermore, without regular exercise, plaque starts to build up in your arteries, and your blood vessels begin to lose the ability to effectively pump blood. Plaque buildup leads to heart attacks and it also reduces the amount of oxygen and nutrients that your blood carries to your brain. When the nutrients don’t make it there, the brain’s ability to function is compromised.

            To prevent this from happening, make sure you get moving every day. Even if it’s just a brisk walk, it’ll help you maintain and increase your mental acuity. Brisk walking, swimming and dancing are all excellent activities. Take a look at these 5 Ways to Find Time for Exercise.

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            2. Eliminate Stressors and Seek Help If You’re Depressed

            Anything that causes you major stress, like anger or anxiety, will in time begin to eat away the parts of your brain that are responsible for memory. Amongst the most brain-damaging stressors is depression, which is actually often misdiagnosed a a memory problem since one of its primary symptoms is the inability to concentrate.

            If you can’t concentrate, then you might feel like you are constantly forgetting things. Depression increases the levels of cortisol in your bloodstream which elevates the cortisol levels in the brain. Doctors have found that increased cortisol diminishes certain areas of the brain, especially the hippocampus which is where short-term memories are stored.

            Prolonged depression can thus destroy your brain’s ability to remember anything new. Seek professional help to combat your depression – your brain will thank you.

            3. Get a Good Night’s Sleep and Take Naps

            Getting a consistent 7 to 8 hours of sleep each night will increase your memory. During sleep, the brain firms up memories of recently acquired information.

            Getting enough sleep will help you get through the full spectrum of nocturnal cycles that are essential to optimal brain and body functioning during the waking hours. Taking a nap throughout the day, especially after learning something new, can also help you to retain those memories as well as recharge your brain and keep it sharper longer.

            4. Feed Your Brain

            Fifty to sixty percent of the brain’s overall weight is pure fat, which is used to insulate its billions of nerve cells. The better insulated a cell is, the faster it can send messages and the quicker you will be thinking.

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            This is precisely why parents are advised to feed their young children whole milk and to restrict dieting – their brains’ need fat to grow and work properly. Skimping on fats can be devastating even to the adult brain.

            Thus, eating foods that contain a healthy mix of fats is vital for long-term memory. Some excellent food choices include fish (especially anchovies, mackerel and wild salmon) and dark leafy green vegetables. Here’re more brain food choices: 12 Foods that Can Improve Your Brain Power

            Deep-fried foods obviously contain fat but their lack of nutritional value is not going to help your brain or your body, so think healthy foods and fats.

            5. Eat Breakfast and Make Sure It Includes an Egg

            According to Larry McCleary, M.D., author of  The Brain Trust Program, an egg is the ideal breakfast. Eggs contain B vitamins which help nerve cells to burn glucose, antioxidants that protect neurons against damage; and omega-3 fatty acids that keep nerve cells firing at optimal speed.

            Other foods to add to your breakfast include fruits, veggies and lean proteins. Avoid trans fats and high fructose corn syrup. Trans fats diminish the brain cells’ ability to communicate with each other and HFCS can actually shrink the brain by damaging cells.

            Having a healthy breakfast in the morning has been shown to improve performance throughout the day. If you’re too busy to have a healthy breakfast, this maybe just right for you: 33 Quick And Healthy Breakfasts For Busy Mornings

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            6. Write it Down

            If there’s something you want to remember, writing it down can help.

            It may sound like a no-brainer, but do you really know why? Writing it down creates oxygenated blood flow to areas of your brain that a responsible for your memories and literally exercises those parts of it. Here’s How Writing Things Down Can Change Your Life.

            You can start a journal, write yourself emails or even start keeping a blog – all of these activities will help to improve your capacity to remember and memorize information.

            7. Listen to Music

            Research shows that certain types of music are very helpful in recalling memories. Information that is learned while listening to a particular song or collection can often be recalled by thinking of the song or “playing” it mentally. Songs and music can serve as cues for pulling up particular memories.

            8. Visual Concepts

            In order to remember things, many people need to visualize the information they are studying.

            Pay attention to photographers, charts and other graphics that might appear in your textbook; or if you’re not studying a book, try to pull up a mental image of what it is you are trying to remember. It might also help to draw your own charts or figures, or utilize colors and highlighters to group related ideas in your notes.

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            Here, you can learn How to Become a Person Who Can Visualize Results.

            9. Teach Someone Else

            Reading material out loud has been shown to significantly improve memory of the material. Expanding further upon this idea is the fact that psychologists and educators have found that by having students teach new concepts to others, it helps to enhance understanding and recall.

            Teach new concepts and information to a friend or study partner, and you’ll find you remember the information a lot better.

            10. Do Crossword Puzzles, Read or Play Cards

            Studies have shown that doing crossword puzzles, read or play cards on a daily basis not only keep your brain active but also help to delay memory loss, especially in those who develop dementia.

            So pick up the daily newspaper and work on that crossword puzzle, read a book or enjoy a game of solitaire.

            Pick one to two of these tips first and start applying them to your everyday life. Very soon you’ll find yourself having better memories and a clearer head!

            More About Boosting Memory

            Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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