Antioxidant Rich Spice - "Cinnamon"
Cinnamon is ranked as number one spice with highest level of antioxidants. There are two types of cinnamon. One is known as ceylon cinnamon which is the true cinnamon and the other is called as cassia cinnamon which is commonly used today by everyone. Cinnamon is obtained from the bark of the tree. Compounds like cinnamaldehyde, cinnamic acid, cinnamate, flavonoids, phenols and antioxidants makes it a medicinally rich spice. Cinnamon is rich in manganese and has fiber, calcium, iron and vitamin K.
Why should you consume cinnamon?
- Cinnamon is packed with antioxidants. It ranks 7th among all herbs, spices and foods containing high antioxidant levels. These antioxidants are polyphenols, phenolic acid and flavonoids. These fights against the oxidative stress and thus prevents one from chronic diseases. It also prevents buildup of nitric oxide in the blood and lipid oxidation thus preventing from various brain and heart disorders.
- The antioxidants found in cinnamon are anti-inflammatory in nature therefore very useful in reducing the inflammation and thus preventing occurrence of chronic diseases. It even helps in reducing muscle sores, PMS pains and other allergic reactions.
- Cinnamon works wonder when it comes to the heart. It lowers the cholesterol, high blood pressure and high levels of triglycerides therefore, reduces the chances of stroke or heart attack. It even improves the blood circulation and and helps in repairing the damaged tissue of the heart.
- Cinnamon is anti-diabetic in nature. It effectively reduces the blood sugar levels and also improves the sensitivity of the insulin thus, decreasing insulin resistance. It inhibits the enzymes called alanines which allows glucose to be absorbed into the blood thus preventing increase in blood sugar level after meals.
- It protects against neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer's disease by activating the neuroprotective proteins which protects the brain cells from mutation and damage if free radicals.
- Due to its antioxidants and presence of cuminaldehyde it can provide protection against cancer. It inhibits DNA damage, growth of tumor and induces apoptosis.
- It is anti-microbial, anti-viral, anti-fungal and anti-biotic in nature. It imparts excellent immunity from cold and cough and also reduces the chance of getting HIV infection.
- It protects against bacteria which can lead to cavities, tooth decay, bad breath and other oral infections.
- It provides protection against candida which is found in digestive tract and could lead to an autoimmune disorder. It treats and prevents from skin irritations, rashes, acne, inflammation, infections and other allergic reactions.
- It can even reduce asthma attacks as it clears up the congestion in the lungs and also removes the mucus and thereby increasing the blood circulation.
- Although it has no sugar, still it is sweet in taste and therefore, can be added to any food which will impart sweet taste.
- Cinnamon helps in managing PCOS and also prevents heavy menstrual bleeding.