Types of Cinnamon

Do’s and Don’t of Using Cinnamon for Weight Loss

Cinnamon is a spice derived from an evergreen tropical tree species. It is used mainly as a condiment in a variety of dishes. With its therapeutic and antioxidants Cinnamon can help you lose weight along with other health benefits.

Cinnamon as a spice exists for over 5000 years. In addition to being a kitchen staple, it is also known for its high medicinal properties. Cinnamon is ranked number one as far as the concentration of anti oxidents is concerned amongst all herbs and spices. It is ranked number seven amongst all food available in terms of concentration of antioxidants and health benefits. Cinnamon comes out of the bark or stem of a tropical evergreen Cinnamon tree. The inner bark is collected and the woody parts are removed. The remaining matter is then dried and curled into Cinnamon rolls. It is known to contain forty one health and other beneficial compounds also known as protective health compounds.

Types of Cinnamon

There are two main types of Cinnamon that are commonly used.

1. Ceylon Cinnamon

  • Also called true Cinnamon
    • Sri Lanka is the biggest producer of this kind of Cinnamon. Around 90 % of all Ceylon Cinnamon is supplied by Sri Lanka
  • Made of thin, fragile layers rolled into a quill like shape
  • Comes with a mild, subtle sweet taste with fragrant smell
  • Light brown in colour, crumbles and easily breaks into tiny pieces
  • Contains very less quantity of coumarin around 0.04 %

2. Cassia Cinnamon

  • Indonesia is the chief supplier of this type
    • Much cheaper than Ceylon Cinnamon. Consists of a hard bark that is spicy and smells pretty strong
    • Contains higher amount of coumarin compared to Ceylon Cinnamon around 4 %

Comparison between cassia and ceylon

CassiaCeylon
CalledRegular cinnamonTrue cinnamon
ColourDark brownLight brown
Stick shapeThick, hard, hollow centerThin, soft, rolled tight
TasteFlat, sharp and spicySweet. Mild
AromaStrongDelicate, rich
Coumarin1-5 %0.0004 %
EffectToxic (prolonged use)Generally safe
CostCheapExpensive
AvailabilityEasily found in super marketOnline
OriginChina, IndiaSri Lanka

Do’s and Don’t of using Cinnamon

1. Using the right type of cinnamon

  • Looking at the comparison of both types, you can understand that it is much better to use Ceylon than Cassia
  • With the health benefits that ceylon offers it is clear cut choice for including in your daily routine

2. Don’t overcook cinnamon

  • Avoid boiling cinnamon for too long
  • Even while cooking or using it as a condiment, don’t overcook it
  • Overcooking isn’t a healthy way to use it

3. Buy cinnamon in stick form and not in powder form

  • Cinnamon in powder form can easily be adulterated
  • Cassia cinnamon is frequently added in ceylon cinnamon

4. Don’t make powder in large quantity

  • Shelf life of cinnamon in powder form isn’t very long
  • To avoid wastage, convert cinnamon stick to powder in small quantity
  • This will ensure the cinnamon powder retains it’s taste and all properties

5. Give break after 7-8 weeks

  • Don’t use cinnamon on prolonged basis
  • It is strongly advised to give a break after 7-8 weeks
  • You can start using cinnamon after a break of 1-2 weeks

6. Quantity to use

  • The quantity to be consumes also varies with the type of cinnamon you’re using
  • Cassia is to be in very small quantity
  • Ceylon : maximum 1-2 tsp should be consumed in one go

7. Best time to consume

  • Before a meal is the right time to consume cinnamon
  • You can also use it in between meals
  • Avoid consuming cinnamon after meals

8. Cinnamon may interfere with some medicines

  • Cinnamon is very beneficial to use, however, if you’re on any medication, it is strongly recommended that you consult a doctor before consuming cinnamon

9. Look out for allergies

  • If you develop any form of allergy by consuming cinnamon, stop using it
  • Always consult a doctor in case of any allergic reaction

10. Reduce consumption in summers

  • Cinnamon is excellent to use in winters
  • However, in summers strict the use to smaller quantities

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