Thursday, January 20, 2011

The Benefits of Cinnamon

Mmmm.. Cinnamon. When I think of cinnamon I think of apple pies, ooey gooey sticky buns, and buttered toast sprinkled with cinnamon & sugar. Yum!
This spice is one of my favorites. It's so versatile. Cinnamon is most often used in dessert recipes however it can be found in many side dishes or main courses as well. It adds a great taste and aroma without adding a lot of calories. It picks up boring dishes & helps to calm down spicy dishes.
The nutritional content of this spice can be found here. You'll find it listed there that cinnamon has
4 grams of fiber and supplies you with 8% of calcium and 4% of iron per serving of the daily requirements. Not bad for a spice!

Dating way back, cinnamon has held it's own throughout history. It's mentioned in biblical writings, it was considered a source of wealth and has been used for centuries not only as a food product but for medicinal purposes as well.
I've read that it has been used in the treatment of and for prevention of colds.
It's also known to help aid digestion. I personally add cinnamon to dishes that tend to cause gas. I've noticed that the cinnamon helped to decrease the amount of gas or indigestion caused by certain dishes.
I've also read that certain studies show this fragrant spice can help lower blood sugars. Today, cinnamon is also often used as an ingredient in aromatherapy treatments. Here's a how to from cinnamon aromatherapy .

In addition to these lovely facts, researchers are currently working on creating a bug spray or repellent to ward off mosquitoes. Apparently, they don't like cinnamon. (Fine with me!!) Hopefully the manufacturers of these sprays will keep it natural for those of us that don't like to pour synthetic chemicals all over the largest organ of our body.

I not only like to add cinnamon to my dessert dishes but I also add them to any chili's I make. If I make a standard red
Texas chili I'll add some as well as when I make my favorite White Turkey Chili. The cinnamon adds a nice spicy, fragrant flavor and it also aids in digestion.

Also, a really delicious snack recipe I have is to take a bunch of small store bought pretzels & put them in a bowl. To that bowl add canola oil, cinnamon & sugar & toss to coat. Place the pretzels on a cookie sheet & bake until just warm. The pretzels absorb the oil & the cinnamon and sugar stick. It's the perfect sweet & salty snack. (Please realize this is not a diet food. ;o)

1 comment:

  1. Oh, so true my dear, oh so true! Cinnamon is far more special than just its taste, and I am thrilled to see that someone has wrote about the benefits of it. Its crazy that bugs don't like it though, who would have thought?
    I might try your prezel idea with cinnamon, it sounds delicious. What I like to do with cinnamon is mix a whole of it into ricotta cheese, along with some vanilla extract, a little powdered sugar, and a drizzle of strong-brewed coffee. Mix it all up and man, is it good. A healthy dessert ;) can't argue with that. And sometimes I like to top a graham cracker with it, super yummy.