I am often asked if, with its sweet flavour, cinnamon makes you fat: on the contrary, it is the ally of diets! Many people use it to lose weight, without really knowing why it helps you lose weight, or how to use cinnamon for weight loss and have a flat stomach.
So let’s develop the subject to know everything about the slimming virtues of this spice from Ceylon, poor man’s insulin!
Why combine cinnamon with a diet?
It is a hot and seductive spice to be used very easily if you appreciate its flavour. We find it from the starter to the dessert (of course), through the drinks. Whatever its use, it is ideal for keeping the figure.
Its special flavour comes from cinnamic aldehyde which represents 90% of the components of Ceylon cinnamon. This substance is the best antioxidant there is. There are as many antioxidants in a teaspoon of cinnamon as in a cup of pomegranate or blueberry juice.
Let’s see in detail these benefits that will act on the weight.
To go further, see our article which details all the health benefits of cinnamon.
Its warming virtues:
Cinnamon, whether it is the bark, cinnamon berries or cinnamon leaves, has warming properties. Indeed, a chemical reaction is created in the body, which naturally raises the body’s heat.
The body’s thermostat ensures that the internal temperature is always the same, the body’s metabolism then speeds up to fight against the excess heat so that the temperature is balanced. This process is carried out by directly burning calories
It is therefore the thermogenic response which causes the acceleration of the metabolism, which causes the action to burn fat.
Its action on blood sugar:
Cinnamon also has a direct effect on blood sugar and cholesterol, earning it the name poor man’s insulin in Asia. Indeed, many experts claim that the spice is effective for people with type 2 diabetes, by increasing the insulin sensitivity of patients.
For the record, the first to have detected this in the West is Dr Richard A. Anderson. It was by mistake, studying the chromium in food, that he noticed that apple pie stimulated insulin activity, which made no sense. After researching, he found that it was the cinnamon in the pie that had this effect.
According to the latest studies by Professor Anderson, methylhydroxychalcone polymers (MHCP), the most active compound in cinnamon, increases glucose metabolism up to 20 times, a process that converts sugar into energy. This, therefore, has a direct effect on calories and fat, and therefore a direct slimming effect.
Besides, by improving, insulin sensitivity has a beneficial effect on patients with obesity. By the way, increasing insulin sensitivity decreases the risk of cardiovascular disease, the onset of arthritis, certain forms of cancer and neurodegenerative disease like Alzheimer’s.
MHCP is also an excellent antioxidant which helps prevent the formation of free radicals, which damage DNA and can lead to chronic diseases, such as diabetes.
An Anderson study was done in patients with diabetes, eating as usual and taking their diabetes medication (but not metformin). These patients consumed doses of cinnamon daily. After 40 days, he noticed drops in blood sugar levels from 18 to 29%, triglycerides from 23 to 30%, and cholesterol from 13 to 26%, including bad cholesterol (LDL cholesterol) from 10 to 24%.
Its digestive virtues:
Finally, let’s mention the digestive virtues of cinnamon. Indeed, it stimulates the digestive system, making it more efficient, which also acts directly against weight gain.
Its appetite suppressant action:
A craving, a desire to snack, jump on the cinnamon! Its appetite suppressant action is very effective, especially in case of sugar craving.
Many scientific studies have highlighted this effect. Among them, a study measured the speed taken by the stomach to empty itself of 300 g of pudding. The stomachs of patients who consumed cinnamon took more than 35% longer to empty: impressive!
Besides, its sweet flavour allows you to halve the sugar in a preparation.
What variety of cinnamon to choose for weight loss?
As I explain in our cinnamon page, there are two varieties of it, which come from the bark of two very similar but different tree species:
•Cinnamomum verum, known as Ceylon cinnamon, also known as real cinnamon,
•Cinnamomum aromatic or Cinnamomum cassia, called cinnamon from Indonesia or China, also called false cinnamon.
Let’s be clear: when it comes to losing weight and lowering blood sugar, variety doesn’t matter, they have the same effect. That said, for long term use, we still recommend Ceylon cinnamon.
Indeed, their health benefits are the same, with one exception that makes all the difference: coumarin. It is the coumarin concentration that differs in the two species.
Ceylon cinnamon bark (Cinnamomum Verum) hardly contains any, but on the other hand, Chinese cinnamon bark (Cinnamomum cassia) is rich in it.
Except that coumarin is potentially toxic to the liver because it has hepatotoxic properties. So for long term consumption, prefer Ceylon cinnamon.
How to take cinnamon to lose weight?
For an effect on weight loss, you should consume daily between 2 and 4 g of cinnamon powder, or about 1/2 to 1 teaspoon per day. Prefer Ceylon cinnamon.
Method # 1:
The easiest way is to add 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon in your daily diet. It is very easy to use, you will manage to find a place for it very easily, for example:
For breakfast: in cottage cheese, on your cereals, on a fruit salad, etc.
In your savoury dishes: yes, especially in the Maghreb and in the East, it is found in salty dishes: couscous, tagines, etc.
In the preparation of your desserts: to add directly to your preparations.
As a drink: in milk, in your tea, in fruit juice (apple, orange, grape, etc.), smoothies, etc.
Method # 2:
Prepare yourself a homemade slimming tea with famous ingredients to lose weight!
Cinnamon honey is an ancestral natural remedy, with, among other things, slimming virtues! You can replace the tea with green mate, an infusion known for its slimming properties.
1 teaspoon of tea (green or black depending on your taste), or mate
1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon or a stick
1 teaspoon of honey
•Boil some water.
•Put the cinnamon in boiling water for 2 or 3 minutes then stop heating.
•After a few minutes, add the tea and honey, let it steep for 3 or 4 minutes and filter the tea.
•Drink twice a day.
For more recipes, check out our article on how to make cinnamon tea.
Method # 3:
Prepare a glass of water with honey and cinnamon.
1 glass of water
1 teaspoon of honey
1 teaspoon of Ceylon cinnamon
Optional: a squeeze of lemon
Heat the water without boiling it.
Add the cinnamon and honey then stir until the ingredients dissolve.
Drink it every morning and if possible in the evening, but with less cinnamon. For information, it is possible to replace the water with milk to prepare good cinnamon milk, just as delicious and good for your health.
Method # 4:
More amazingly, just smell the cinnamon for it to affect you!
A little tip: in a spice jar, put a vanilla pod, a little citrus zest (orange, grapefruit, etc.), and of course cinnamon. In case of a little hunger, inhale the mixture for a good minute, the appetite suppressant effect will take care of the rest!
Does cinnamon work quickly?
The first effects on blood sugar are felt after 2 weeks of daily absorption.
The first effects on cholesterol and triglycerides may take months to appear.
Contraindication and side effects:
If using Indonesian cinnamon (Cinnamomum cassia), do not exceed 1/2 teaspoon per day. The coumarin present in this variety is an anticoagulant, be careful if you are on anticoagulant treatment.
Rarer, coumarin, in large amounts and over long term consumption can cause liver damage. Otherwise, check out the contraindications for cinnamon for more information.
Here! Another good reason to consume cinnamon, especially associated with honey as you can see.
We have focused the information on cinnamon on the topic of this article, that is, its action on fat and weight in general, but honey and cinnamon are remedies for many ailments, many benefits that you will also enjoy by consuming them, and participating in good general health!