Before you know it the holidays will be here and the smell of cinnamon will fill the air. I love that invigorating smell–it’s so nostalgic and makes me feel all warm and fuzzy on the inside—this must have some sort of positive effect on my brain right?! Cinnamon’s aromatic energy is not its only fabulous quality. It’s also a wonderful flavor booster for your spiced loaves, apple pies, oatmeal and it is also medicinal.
Whether you are consuming, smelling or applying this wonderful spice for pure pleasure, you are also reaping its medicinal benefits. Like most spices I have studied, each has their unique, but also similar benefits. One thing we appreciate about this sweet tasting spice is that it can be found in kitchen cabinets across all continents.
The fall season, aka vata season is a wonderful time to increase cinnamon into the weekly diet. Generating internal heat, for the soon approaching cold and wet winter months. Aside from warmth, this sattvic tri-doshic spice can also be viewed as a medicine.
Well, tell me, tell me – what’s so great about cinnamon?
- It helps keeps the digestive fire alive
- Prevents toxins from building in our digestive tracks
- Its’ warming-so it’s great to counterbalance colds and reduce phlegm
- Stabilizes blood sugar levels
- Lowers cholesterol
- Awesome for arthritis, joint pain and headaches due to its anti-inflammatory properties
- Great for increasing circulation
- Balances vata and helps to pacify kapha
- For a medicine, it tastes and smells grrreat!
How do I incorporate cinnamon as a medicine into my life?
- Love oatmeal? Add a little extra ( ½ a tsp per serving is a good amount to start with)
- Craving something sweet? Sprinkle a little cinnamon on fruit to boost sweetness without adding a sweetener
- Feel a cold or some congestion coming on? Take ½ tsp cinnamon with 1 tsp of honey.
- Want to stabilize your blood sugar levels? Enjoy a warm cup of milk with ½ tsp of cinnamon or a cup of cinnamon tea*, a few times a week is a great place to begin
BALANCE IS THE KEY INGREDIENT
too much of a good thing is not always a good thing
People with a little extra (imbalance) Pitta (heat) or digestive issues like IBS, should be wary… too much cinnamon might not be the best option – listen to your body.
Coffee drinkers wait at least an hour to drink coffee if you have just consumed cinnamon medicinally (like the cinnamon and honey combo). Both are heating and may cause some irritability.
*To make a medicinal tea, it’s recommended to simmer the spice for at least 15 minutes on the stove.