Originally published August 21 2010
Popular Cinnamon Offers Medicinal Properties and Tasty Treats
by Alice E. Marson
(NaturalNews) Cinnamon is a simple flavoring, but it is the most pungent, popular, and common of all the spices. It has some surprisingly potential health benefits and is one of the world's most important medicinal spices. Cinnamon was used as medicine by medieval physicians to treat coughing, hoarseness, sore throats, colds, and flu, as well as problems with the digestive system. In addition to medicinal use, cinnamon was used as a preservative because it has phenols which inhibit bacterial growth; thus, it was used to preserve meats.
Studies have indicated that cinnamon has antifungal, antibacterial, and antiparasitic qualities. It has been found effective in fighting vaginal and oral yeast infections, stomach ulcers, and head lice. Cinnamon has anti-inflammatory properties which aid in decreasing body inflammation that is caused by our Western diet of fried, fatty, and processed foods.
In recent studies, cinnamon may actually help people with Type 2 diabetes by controlling blood sugar levels, while possibly lowering bad cholesterol and triglycerides. In a study in Pakistan, people with Type 2 diabetes were given a gram of cinnamon a day for forty days. The results showed a significant decrease in blood sugar levels, LDL (bad) cholesterol, total cholesterol and triglycerides.
Historically, cinnamon and cinnamon oil are mentioned 130 times in the Bible. In fact, they are mentioned in Exodus 30: 22-25 where Moses used these ingredients for his anointing oil. They were burned at funerals, and the Egyptians used them in their embalming process.
Cinnamon is a native of Ceylon (Sri Lanka) and dates back to 2800 B.C. where it was found in Chinese writings. Early cinnamon came from the bark of the laurel tree. Modern day cinnamon comes from the cassia tree. Cinnamon was once so highly-prized that wars were fought over it; it was used as a currency and for aphrodisiacal powers. Cinnamon, once grown only in Sri Lanka, is now grown in Java, Sumatra, Borneo, Mauritius, Reunion and Guyana, in addition to America, the West Indies, Vietnam, China, Indonesia and other tropical-climate countries.
In the late 17th century cinnamon was so popular that the Dutch, French, English and Portuguese fought for control of the island of Ceylon (Sri Lanka) to gain the monopoly of the cinnamon crop. Today, cinnamon is still in demand all over the world; there is an abundant supply of it and it is affordable for most people.
Cinnamon not only smells good and tastes good but is also good for you. If you want something different to spread on your toast at breakfast, mix a teaspoon of cinnamon into a cup of honey and spread this on your toast for a delicious treat. Furthermore, add a tablespoon of cinnamon to the raw apples when making applesauce. This will help to preserve the applesauce in the refrigerator for weeks.
About the authorAlice E. Marson is a natural health published author and researcher. She is a retired teacher and writes for Mature Living and ActiveAmericans.com mainly on health topics.
As a breast cancer survivor she is a strong believer in natural and alternative medicine and avoiding prescription drugs.
Alice has given public and TV presentations on toxic products in the home.
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