We tend to think of cinnamon mainly as a winter fragrance and spice for baking or ciders. But cinnamon is a potent spice with extensive health benefits and appealing flavor.
Cinnamon, the spice
Even a dash of cinnamon has great nutrition value. Cinnamon is high in manganese, Vitamin K/A/C/E, and folate, and also has calcium, iron, and magnesium. It’s also abundant in amino acids which heavily contribute to many of its health benefits.
Cinnamon health benefits:
1. Cinnamon is a powerful antioxidant. It is chockfull of polyphenols and flavonoids that slow aging and protect cells from free radical damage that can cause cancer. It prevents or slows the oxidization of cells which is what leads to various types of cancers.
2. It is also has anti-inflammatory properties which also make it a great natural pain reliever. It increases blood circulation and so reduces swelling and inflammation and can be used to help muscle soreness, arthritis, and even menstrual pain.
3. Cinnamon is a heart healthy spice. It can used to manage blood pressure, cholesterol and reduce LDLs. As it increases blood circulation, cinnamon can help the heart with its natural ability to heal itself as protection from strokes and heart attacks.
So how to eat cinnamon? Well, first you can add a dash of cinnamon to nearly any food. It has a beautiful deep flavor that can enhance a lot of dishes. More specifically, here are two easy ways to eat more cinnamon.
1. Cinnamon Ginger Tea – an antioxidant, anti inflammatory tea
This is a great general wellness tea that you can also drink for internal or external aches. Add 1 tbsp of minced ginger and 1 tsp of cinnamon to 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Turn down the heat to low, cover, and let it heat for 5-10 minutes. Strain, add honey to taste, a squeeze of lemon and enjoy.
You can also brew this mix in some mug of apple cider instead of plain water.
2. Cinnamon Almond Butter
On some whole wheat bread or in oatmeal, this makes a great heart healthy morning meal.
Preheat oven to 350 and roast 2 cups of almonds for 10 minutes. Allow them to cool and then add them to a food processor and process for 2 minutes. Add 1 tbsp of grapeseed oil, and 1/2 tsp of salt, and process for another 5 minutes or until it resembles a runny meal. Then add 1 tbsp of cinnamon and 2 tbsp of honey and mix for 2 minutes. Pour into a container and refrigerate.