Update on Cinnamon for Blood Sugar Control


the use of cinnamon to help treat diabetes remains controversial we know that cinnamon is so good at controlling one’s blood sugar that you can cheat on a diabetes test by consuming two teaspoons of cinnamon the night before your glucose tolerance test basically they make you drink some sugar water and see how well your body can keep your blood sugar levels under control and if you eat those two teaspoons right when the test starts or twelve hours before you can significantly blunt the spike a half teaspoon of cinnamon does not seem to be enough but about a teaspoon a day does appear to make a significant difference a review the best studies done to date found that the intake of cinnamon by type two diabetics or pre-diabetics does lower their blood glucose significantly so what’s the controversy well as I described before cassia cinnamon also known as Chinese cinnamon or probably what you’re getting at the store if it just says cinnamon contains a compound called coumarin which may be toxic to the liver in high enough doses originally the concern was mainly for kids during Christmas time where they might get an above average exposure but more recently some researchers suggest that the kids just sprinkling some cassia cinnamon on their oatmeal a few times a week might exceed the recommended safety limit the bowl values here are above the recommended upper limit for little kids just a quarter teaspoon of cinnamon a few times a week maybe too much and if you’re eating that cinnamon sprinkled oatmeal more than like you know every day even adults can bump up against the limit so a teaspoon a day of cassia cinnamon might be too much for anyone but no problem just switch from cassia cinnamon to Ceylon cinnamon you can get the benefits without the potential risks right well without the risks yes but we’re not sure about the benefits nearly all the study showing blood sugar benefits of cinnamon were done on cassia we’ve just assumed that the same would apply for the safer cinnamon Ceylon but only recently was put to the test owing to the presence that toxic compound the Federal Institute for risk assessment in Europe is warned against consuming large amounts of the cassia cinnamon suggesting a switch from cassia cinnamon to Ceylon cinnamon also known as true cinnamon but you know we didn’t know whether or not the true cinnamon had similar benefits until now you know we saw that nice blunting of blood sugar levels in response to cassia cinnamon well but in response to Ceylon cinnamon nothing bummer in fact they’re thinking you know maybe that potentially toxic coumarin stuff was the active ingredient in the cassia cinnamon all along so you take out the toxin you take out the benefit so they conclude yeah it’s great that health authorities are recommending the switch however the positive effects scene with cassia could then be lost so should we give up on going out of our way to add cinnamon to our diet no I think it’s still a good idea to shoot for about a teaspoon of cinnamon of Ceylon cinnamon a day since there’s a bunch of other benefits linked to cinnamon besides just blood sugar control not the least of which is its potent antioxidant content in fact one of the cheapest food sources of antioxidants beating out the cloves and coming in just under purple cabbage but cinnamon can no longer be considered a safe and effective treatment for diabetes either you’re using cassia cinnamon and it’s effective but may not be safe or using Ceylon cinnamon which is safe but does not appear effective but look even the cassia cinnamon only brought down blood Sugar’s modestly in other words only as good as the leading diabetes drug in the world metformin sold as a glucophage yeah it may work as good as the leading drug but that’s not saying much the best way to treat diabetes is to attempt to cure it completely reversing diabetes with a healthy diet you