food · health and wellness · natural remedies · nutrition

Would the REAL Cinnamon please stand up?!

Hands down the cheesiest blog title I’ve had yet, but once I got it in my head I just couldn’t help myself.

I want to share a tiny bit of information today that I really feel should be common knowledge…. but isn’t.

As consumers, how are we supposed to make informed choices if we are not informed? So here let me drop this truth bomb:

Did you know that the typical cinnamon you buy at the grocery store is not real cinnamon? That’s right – it’s an impostor. 

Cinnamon is originally from a plant called the Cinnamomum Zeylanicum, which also goes by the name “Ceylon Cinnamon”. The one you will typically find in the grocery store, unless otherwise labelled, is from another plant called Cinnamomum Cassia. It typically goes by the name “Cassia Cinnamon”.

The two plants themselves are related and therefore do share some similar properties. Ceylon cinnamon is typically more expensive, but you get what you pay for. It is nutritionally potent and great for medicinal use. It also contains less coumarin than it’s Cassia cousin, which has been shown to have negative health benefits for some people in moderate to high doses.

Ceylon Cinnamon is also much better tasting. Cinnamon should have a sweet aroma as opposed to a bitter one, which is one way to distinguish between the two types. Ceylon cinnamon breaks easily, so if you want to test any sticks at home see if you can split it in half. Cassia cinnamon is extremely difficult to break.

Other things to keep an eye open for:

Any fillers, for example flour.

Also: freshness. Like other spices cinnamon can go stale, so keep in mind where you are buying your cinnamon and how (sealed container vs. bulk).

Real cinnamon has great nutritional value and is an excellent anti-inflammatory. It also helps to lower blood sugar and may even fight against infection.

Now that you are informed, it’s your choice! Cassia cinnamon in small amounts is pretty much harmless. If you consume a substantial amount of cinnamon like me and want the full medicinal benefits of it, it is worth springing for the Ceylon version.

Thanks for reading!

 

Sources:

Authority Nutrition – 10 Evidence-Based Health Benefits of Cinnamon

BfR – FAQ on Coumarin in Cinnamon 

Food Renegade – Is Your Cinnamon Real? 

 

Image: 

“True Cinnamon” – myherbclinic.com 

 

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