Cinnamon tea is a caffeinated beverage made by steeping the bark of the cinnamon tree in hot water. Cinnamon, also known as cassia, is used to flavor teas and coffees worldwide, but only recently has it become popular to use these beverages for medicinal purposes. It can be consumed cold or hot depending on your preference. There are two types of cinnamon, Ceylon, and cassia. Ceylon is considered healthier because it has less coumarin than cassia. However, Cassia is cheaper and more common. In this article, you will find some of the amazing health benefits, nutrition facts, and side effects of drinking cinnamon tea.
Cinnamon Tea Nutrition Facts
Ground cinnamon contains around several minerals including iron, calcium, manganese, and zinc. Cinnamon also contains vitamins A, C, E, D , B1(thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), B5 (pantothenic acid), B6 (pyridoxine), folic acid, magnesium, phosphorous (13).
With the above information, you can see that cinnamon tea is a nutritional powerhouse with many health benefits to offer so let’s take a look at these benefits next!
Cinnamon Tea Health Benefits
Cinnamon tea is full of beneficial compounds that may offer various health benefits. Here are science-based health benefits of cinnamon tea.
Loaded With Antioxidants
Cinnamon is particularly rich in polyphenol antioxidants. These antioxidants are capable of scavenging harmful free radicals that damage cell membranes and DNA, accelerate skin aging, and lead to inflammatory diseases (3).
Polyphenol antioxidants in cinnamon have been known to be a natural defense against cancer, diabetes, asthma, and autoimmune diseases (3).
Cinnamon is also a good source of catechins which consists of 61% of its total polyphenol content. Catechins are said to have more antioxidant activity than that of vitamin C or E (1). In fact, some experts say that they may be more effective at scavenging free radicals than vitamin C.
In short, Cinnamon tea has the potential to reduce inflammation from many types of diseases from cancer to arthritis because it’s loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds like catechins and proanthocyanidins (PPC) (1). PPCs are another polyphenol antioxidant that is also found in apples, grape seed extract, and green tea.
Cinnamon has the ability to improve memory by stimulating neurons. It helps increase blood flow to the brain which helps protect against free radicals that cause Alzheimer’s disease. Studies also show that cinnamon can help slow down or reverse age-induced changes in memory impairment (1).
Plaque formation on nerve cells is one of the initial signs of Alzheimer’s Disease (AD). Cinnamon reduces this plaque formation because it breaks up amyloid beta oligomers (AβOs). These are small proteins responsible for forming plaques of amyloid protein in the human brain similar to those seen in AD patients (1).
Cancer is the second leading cause of all deaths in America after heart disease. A study was conducted on mice with cancerous tumors and cinnamon extract treatment. It was shown that this prevented abnormal cell growth or stimulated death of cancer cells, apoptosis, so it provides a potential treatment for those suffering from cancer (1).
Protects Skin From Ageing
Skin ageing can be attributed to environmental toxins as well as internal factors such as poor diet and lifestyle choices. Studies show that people who eat a high-fat diet have twice as much skin aging as those who follow a low fat diet, which may indicate that antioxidants play a significant role in preventing skin damage caused by oxidative stress (6).
If you’re forking out money for anti-ageing creams, you may want to reach instead for the cinnamon, because it’s actually proven to slow down skin ageing by acting as an antioxidant. Cinnamon contains high levels of epicatechin which is a type of flavonoid that gives it these anti-aging properties (1). Flavonoids are powerful antioxidants with many health benefits including reducing inflammation and preventing cancer (10).
Cinnamon is also known to protect against UV damage from sunlight exposure. Cinnamon has been shown to help repair oxidative stress in damaged cells, which can cause wrinkles or premature aging when left unchecked (11).
Promotes Weight Loss
The combination of lower calorie intake, increased thermogenesis (the process where your body generates heat, which speeds up your metabolism, thereby burning excess calories and fat), and increased satiety (feeling of fullness) can help you achieve effective weight loss using cinnamon (4).
Cinnamon is also helpful in boosting the immune system to prevent obesity-related problems like metabolic syndrome which includes high blood pressure, cholesterol, and insulin resistance. This may be related to its effects on blood sugar levels because it helps reduce fasting plasma glucose levels while improving markers of oxidative stress in people with type 2 diabetes (1).
Prevents Digestive Disorders
Cinnamaldehyde (an organic compound found in cinnamon) has antibiotic properties that make it good for treating chronic infections associated with gastrointestinal disorders including colitis. Cinnamon contains fiber which can help keep things moving through your digestive system (3). Here’s how it works: fiber binds to bile in your small intestine, forming a gel that creates bulk and adds weight, which stimulates your intestines.
Promotes Heart Health
Cinnamon has an effect on glucose control, lowers low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels, and raises high-density lipoprotein (HDL) levels. These effects help prevent the hardening of the arteries or atherosclerosis associated with heart disease (3).
If you tend to let yourself off the hook, raise the white flag when things get tougher than you expected, send yourself on an unconscious binge-eating trip – BetterMe app is here to help you leave all of these sabotaging habits in the past!
Helps With Respiratory Problems
The anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties of cinnamon help reduce respiratory inflammation such as asthma, bronchitis, COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), etc. It can also help clear nasal congestion since cinnamaldehyde helps thin mucus in the respiratory tract (11).
Prevents Gingivitis And Bad Breath
Gingivitis is a gum disease you can get from not brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing regularly. It is actually an inflammation of the gums which can lead to tooth loss if left untreated. Bad breath happens when bacteria in your mouth cannot be washed away because you don’t brush or floss regularly, allowing them to grow and multiply (8).
Cinnamon contains cinnamaldehyde, which has been shown to have bacteriostatic effects against plaque-forming bacteria like S. mutans , A. viscosus , and P. intermedia. Cinnamon works against periodontal disease by suppressing various pathogens including Porphyromonas gingivalis (a major cause for periodontal disease) (8).
Cinnamon can also freshen your breath after a meal because cinnamon kills certain kinds of “bad” oral bacteria associated with bad breath.
Reduces Menstrual Cramps And Other PMS Symptoms
The anti-inflammatory properties of cinnamon can help reduce menstrual cramps and other PMS symptoms like breast tenderness. This is because the anti-inflammatory properties of cinnamon help reduce prostaglandin F(2) alpha (PGF(2)alpha), a hormone that stimulates uterine contractions (12).
Cinnamon Tea Side Effects
Although not common, too much cinnamon (for example, daily doses exceeding 100 grams) could be toxic and harmful to your health. The primary side effects include:
The coumarin in cinnamon can lead to increased bleeding and bruising. If you have a blood disorder or are on medications that thin your blood, avoid consuming too much cinnamon or cassia cinnamon because it can cause too many internal bleeding problems including stomach bleeding and gastrointestinal hemorrhage (5).
High Blood Pressure
Cinnamon has been shown to increase blood pressure levels by blocking calcium channels and increasing adrenaline production which stimulates the heart rate and raises blood pressure even further. Consuming 100 grams or more of cinnamon daily could be dangerous for people with hypertension (high blood pressure).
If you have digestive problems, too much cinnamon could cause nausea, diarrhea, gas, and bloating. This is because it stimulates the secretion of stomach acid and causes irritation in some people (5).
Cinnamon can add calories to your diet if you’re not careful since it’s a sweet spice that adds flavor to desserts and other treats like pancakes, waffles, oatmeal, smoothies, hot chocolate, and tea.
All in all, these side effects are rare and don’t happen often when consuming moderate amounts of cinnamon or cassia cinnamon (2-3 grams per day).
There are risks when taking any type of health supplement, so you should consult your physician before consuming large amounts of cinnamon or cassia cinnamon on a daily basis if you (5):
- Are Pregnant: Cinnamon may cause uterine contractions and bleeding therefore it’s best to consult with your doctor before adding anything new into your diet while expecting.
- Have Allergies: Everyone with allergies (especially to plants) to cinnamomum cassia or cinnamomum zeylanicum should avoid cinnamon.
- Have Diabetes: If you have diabetes, don’t consume too much cinnamon since it can increase blood sugar levels in some people.
- Are Taking Anticoagulants: Cinnamon contains coumarin which is a natural blood thinner that can cause bleeding problems if taken with anticoagulant medications.
- Are Taking Medications for Blood Pressure: Cinnamon may interfere with calcium channel blockers used to treat high blood pressure because it can raise your blood pressure and heart rate.
The Bottom Line
Cinnamon tea is a great drink with many benefits including helping to control your blood sugar, cholesterol, and even blood pressure. It can also help you lose weight by suppressing your appetite while boosting your metabolism, too!
If you’re looking for a flavorful tea that will provide many health benefits, then cinnamon tea is perfect for you. You can get the most out of each cup by adding raw honey or lemon juice—or even mix up some of these tasty combinations of herbs and fruits to give it an extra special touch.
This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!
- Cinnamon: A Multifaceted Medicinal Plant (2014, nih.gov)
- Cinnamon: Health Benefits, Uses, Nutrition, Risks (2020, webmd.com)
- Cinnamon: Mystic powers of a minute ingredient (2015, nih.gov)
- Cinnamon: Update of Potential Health Benefits (2019, lww.com)
- Cinnamon (2020, nih.gov)
- Diet and Skin Aging-From the Perspective of Food Nutrition (2020, nih.gov)
- EFFECT OF CINNAMALDEHYDE FROM CINNAMON EXTRACT AS A NATURAL PRESERVATIVE ALTERNATIVE TO THE GROWTH OF Staphylococcus aureus BACTERIA (2011, researchgate.net)
- Effects of Cinnamon (Cinnamomum spp.) in Dentistry: A Review (2020, nih.gov)
- Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Cinnamon Oil Soft Capsule in Patients with Functional Dyspepsia: A Randomized double blind placebo-controlled clinical trial (2021, hindawi.com)
- Flavonoids in food and their health benefits (2004, pubmed.gov)
- Medicinal properties of ‘true’ cinnamon (Cinnamomum zeylanicum): a systematic review (2013, biomedcentral.com)
- Re: Cinnamon Effective in Relieving Painful Menstrual Cramps but Less Effective than Ibuprofen (2016, herbalgram.org)
- Spices, cinnamon, ground (2019, usda.gov)