As the leaves change colors, the wind tousles the hair, and shorts grow into pants, cinnamon begins to permeate in the air. Spiced cakes and lattes covered in cinnamon sprinkles warm up the shorter days. Leading us down an aromatic path nestled amongst sweet-scented cinnamon bark filled memories. Menus of Morracan stews, spiced buns, American apple pie, porridge, and Mexican hot chocolate speak of cinnamon’s versatility. From sweet to savory dishes, this all-season spice is infused across continents.
A spice rich in volatile oils, cinnamon is highly regarded in ancient Ayurveda texts, seen both as tasty and medicinal. According to Sebastian Pole’s book Ayurvedic Medicine, “As a bark protects a tree, cinnamon protects and strengthens the intestines”. The many benefits of this tri-doshic, sattva spice is perhaps why cinnamon will make you feel as warm and fuzzy on the inside as the aroma does on the outside.
THE BENEFITS OF CINNAMON
- Boosts the digestive, metabolic fire aka the agni
- Prevents ama or toxins from building in the digestive tracks
- A diaphoretic, cinnamon promotes sweating, which is helpful in when during a cold, on when there is congestion and excess mucous in the body.
- Supports stabilizing blood sugar levels
- Can help in lowering cholesterol
- An anti-inflammatory, cinnamon can be supportive when there is joint pain and stiffness
- Promotes internal circulation
- Balances vata dosha, and helps pacify kapha dosha
HOW TO SPICE UP YOUR LIFE WITH CINNAMON
- Oatmeal. Add a little extra over the cold season, work up to 1/2 tsp per serving
- Craving something sweet? Sprinkle cinnamon on fruit, toast, or a green juice, the aromatics give a sweet sensation without adding a sweetener.
- Have a cold or feeling congested? Mix a 1/4 to 1/2 tsp cinnamon with 1 tsp of honey and a sprinkle of ginger powder and turmeric. Enjoy a few times throughout the day
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.