Can Cinnamon Help with Diabetes and Weight Loss?

Can Cinnamon Help with Diabetes and Weight Loss?

Cinnamon, a spice derived from the bark of a bushy evergreen tree of the Lauraceae family. 

It is native to several countries such as India, Burma and other South American countries. Different types of cinnamon varieties have originated from different places.  However, Cinnamon is mainly classified into two types – Cassia cinnamon and Ceylon cinnamon.

Recent research shows that cinnamon aids in Diabetes, weight loss, cardiac problems, reduces inflammation, alleviates menstrual cramps etc.

Why is cinnamon good for certain medical conditions?  

Cinnamon is a cure for many health problems. The most important components present in cinnamon are Cinnamaldehyde, trans-cinnamaldehyde, other components and essential oils that act as mystic powers of cinnamon and help to treat various medical conditions including GI tract problems, gynaecological problems, and other metabolic problems.

Recent research shows that cinnamon is good for diabetes as it helps lower blood sugar levels and cholesterol which helps diabetic patients lose weight. The studies conducted show that it has antioxidant, antimicrobial, antidiabetic, anti-inflammatory, anticancer and other properties which help to prevent cardiac problems and other diseases. 

Cinnamaldehyde is the main active component present in cinnamon. It helps reduce menstrual cramps, prevents tooth decay, it also cures bad breath. 

Cinnamon contains a high amount of natural coumarin, which helps prevent the narrowing of blood vessels and protects against blood clots. It also helps to fight off oxidation caused by free radicals and prevent metabolic diseases like diabetes, cancer, and cardiac problems. 

Cinnamon can increase the total antibody capacity, reduce blood pressure, triglyceride, and LDL (bad cholesterol) also helps to increase HDL good cholesterol to improve health.

Does cinnamon act like Insulin and can it be used to treat diabetes? 

Cinnamon does not contain more vitamins and minerals. However, it decreases the oxidative stress which is caused by free radicals in cells, with the help of antioxidants present in Cinnamon. In diabetes, the pancreas cannot produce enough insulin properly, which leads to hyperglycaemia. Using Cinnamon in the right proportion for a while helps to reverse diabetes with proper diet, physical activity and sleep.

Cinnamon is called a mimetic because it increases insulin sensitivity by imitating the activity of insulin or diabetic medication. Making insulin more efficient by increasing glucose transport into the cells and the effect remains at least for 12 hours.  It also helps to reduce the HbA1C. 

Cinnamon can be used in many, especially in cooking. The cinnamon tea or water and cinnamon can also be used for seasoning in routine dishes we make like cinnamon in cookies, desserts, or any curry or flavoured rice. The fermented cinnamon water or cinnamon with rose water and cinnamon bar soap are all used for dermatitis problems and it has anti-ageing properties. The daily intake of Ceylon cinnamon in food should be no more than 1 teaspoon.

Note – Cinnamon helps to slow down the breakdown of carbohydrates in the gut and protects your blood sugar from spiking after meals. Cassia cinnamon 1g/day and Ceylon cinnamon 5-6g/day can be used in our daily food.

Is it true that cinnamon is good for weight loss?

Most of them could not differ in weight loss and fat loss in our bodies. Cinnamon tea helps to lose fat and waist circumference. 

Cinnamon is used to burn fat in our body. Some people think that after eating too much fatty food if we consume cinnamon it helps to burn fat and leads to weight loss. That is not true. After having a balanced diet cinnamon helps to burn fat to convert into energy, instead of protein breakdown in the body. So that they lose fat and gain muscle mass. 

How does the mystic power of cinnamon cause diverse effects on our body?

We already know that cinnamon is classified into two common varieties they are Cassia cinnamon and Ceylon cinnamon. 

Cinnamon has a component called coumarin which is high in cinnamaldehyde, which is beneficial for many medicinal properties. That is why cinnamon is called a multifaceted medicinal plant. At the same time, the cassia cinnamon has 63 times more coumarin compared to Ceylon cinnamon. 

The higher dosage may lead to toxicity for our body. It can cause Liver problems, GI tract, and other bleeding problems. 

“Too much of anything is not good for anyone” – Ray Bradbury, The Illustrated Man

This proverb reminds me of a scenario of my patient whose name is Mr Charles (45 years old), he has had a problem with Diabetes for the past 2 years. It has been controlled with the help of diabetic medication. 

Later he came to know the mystic power of cinnamon and its memetic effect on diabetic medication from one of his friends and he began to use cinnamon without consulting any physician or dietitian. He wanted to cure diabetes as soon as possible and in turn he reduced his food intake and increased his Cinnamon intake. No one was aware of this including the doctor as well as the dietitian which led to hypoglycaemia and he fell unconscious. Later he was admitted to the hospital for further investigation by his family members. The doctor found out that his HbA1C was low and sugar levels were controlled. So the diabetic medication was stopped. During that period, he did not mention to the doctor that he was taking cinnamon in addition to his medication.

After 6 months he had complaints of severe abdomen pain and other GI complaints. After investigations, Doctors came to know that he is taking a high dose of cinnamon (more than 10-15gms a day for more than 10 months) which is why his sugar levels became hypoglycaemic. 

After multiple tests, they found out his liver was damaged and having a GI bleed. All this happened because he consumed more cinnamon which became toxic to his body and caused liver problems.

Note – Cassia cinnamon is 1g/day and Ceylon cinnamon is 6g/day if we consume more than the required amount, it leads to a diverse effect on our body. The daily intake can be different from person to person according to their blood sugar level. Please speak to your concerned physician or doctor before using.

So, from his life history, we understand that medicine has limits, when we cross the limit, we suffer and it becomes toxic. There are some others who are following the same method by consulting with a doctor and dietitian to maintain their blood glucose levels. So please remember this proverb in your life for health and wellness.  Also please consult your Doctor and Dietitian before managing your weight and diabetes on your own. 

Varsha,
Specialist Dietitian, Simplyweight

The London Obesity & Endocrine Clinic specialises in Weight Loss and Endocrine disorders at the Specialist Weight Loss Centre in Chennai, India. We offer face to face and virtual consultations with our specialist clinical lead, Dr Rajeswaran, who has 25+ years experience in this field. We support people with Obesity related medical conditions including Type 2 Diabetes, Fatty Liver, Infertility, Erectile Dysfunction, and Endocrine disorders like Hypothyroidism, Hyperthyroidism, PCOS, Hirsutism, Adrenal Dysfunction, Menopause, Pituitary problems and Sexual Dysfunction. Our services predominantly cover major cities in India including New Delhi, Bengaluru, Kolkata, Chennai, Mumbai and PuneWe also offer aesthetic treatments, metabolic master health checkups, bespoke weight management plans and an unique online weight loss plan for wellness and weight management. Get in touch to transform your life!

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