Cinnamon is a spice that comes from the branches of wild trees that belong to the genus "Cinnamomum" - native to the Caribbean, South America, and Southeast Asia.
There are two main types of cinnamon:
Cinnamon has been consumed since 2000 BC in Ancient Egypt, where it was very highly prized (almost considered to be a panacea). In medieval times doctors used cinnamon to treat conditions such as coughing, arthritis and sore throats.
Modern research indicates that this spice may have some very beneficial properties.
According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, Cinnamon is used to help treat muscle spasms, vomiting, diarrhea, infections, the common cold, loss of appetite, and erectile dysfunction (ED).
Diabetes - cinnamon may help improve glucose and lipids levels3 in patients with type 2 diabetes, according to a study published inDiabetics Care.
The study authors concluded that consuming up to 6 grams of cinnamon per day "reduces serum glucose, triglyceride, LDL cholesterol, and total cholesterol in people with type 2 diabetes." and that "the inclusion of cinnamon in the diet of people with type 2 diabetes will reduce risk factors associated with diabetes and cardiovascular diseases."
Alzheimer's disease - Tel Aviv University researchers discovered that cinnamon may help prevent Alzheimer's disease. According to Prof. Michael Ovadia, of the Department of Zoology at Tel Aviv University, an extract found in cinnamon bark, called CEppt, contains properties that can inhibit the development of the disease.
HIV - a study of Indian medicinal plants revealed that cinnamon may potentially be effective against HIV4. According to the study authors, "the most effective extracts against HIV-1 and HIV-2 are respectively Cinnamomum cassia (bark) and Cardiospermum helicacabum (shoot + fruit)."
Multiple Sclerosis - cinnamon may help stop the destructive process of multiple sclerosis (MS), according to a neurological scientist at Rush University Medical Center. Cinnamon could help eliminate the need to take some expensive and unpleasant drugs.
Lower the negative effects of high fat meals - Penn State researchers revealed that diets rich in cinnamon can help reduce the body's negative responses to eating high-fat meals.
Various methods are used to obtain cassia essential oil, such as drying and grinding the seeds and steaming the bark, leaves, twigs and flowers. Cassia produces a slightly sweet aroma, and it imparts a spicy taste that has a slight bite.
Traditional practitioners use cassia to treat a variety of maladies, including:
• blurred vision
• bloodshot eyes
• high blood pressure
• stomach and muscle spasms
• erectile dysfunction
• kidney disorders
• nausea and vomiting
• bed wetting
• menstrual problems
• to incite abortion
Positive reports about the essential oil from NIH confirm that the Cinnamomum Cassia tree contains cinnamaldehyde, a chemical that seems to counteract bacteria and fungi.
The U.S. National Library of Medicine cites the early use of spices for antimicrobial purposes, in fact it is mentioned in one of the oldest known medical books, and is mentioned several times in the Bible Much more recently, around the year 1676, Van Leeuwenhoek described some effects of using spices. Current interest in cinnemaldehyde is showing potential for development as an antimicrobial agent in food. Problems with adding a sufficient quantity of a flavorful spice such as cinnamon include the way that it alters the taste of food.
Cassia oil is used for athlete’s foot, a condition that can occur from walking on communal shower floors and saunas as well as swimming pools. Cassia is a well known and highly regarded antifungal agent.