The Health Risks of Cinnamon

Written by jody wilber
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The Health Risks of Cinnamon
Consuming too much cinnamon can be risky to your health. (cinnamon image by Azazirov from Fotolia.com)

Cinnamon is a spice used in many foods we eat every day. Cinnamon has many health benefits and has been shown to be a natural and safe food preservative. It is also known for its cancer-fighting antioxidants. However, as with most items, too much of a good thing can be dangerous. The same holds true for cinnamon.

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Liver Damage

There are two types of cinnamon: Ceylon and Cassia. Cassia cinnamon is safer than Ceylon and contains hardly any coumarin (which has been linked to liver disease and damage and is occasionally used to kill rodents), while Ceylon contains more than the recommended daily amount. Ceylon is the most popular type of cinnamon and is used in both spices and tablets.

Skin Irritant

Cinnamon contains cinnamaldehyde, which is used in agriculture to control pests. Cinnamaldehyde is good for agricultural products because of its low levels of toxicity but is still known as a skin irritant.

Risks for Pregnant Women

The cinnamaldehyde found in cinnamon is also suspected of being a risk to pregnant women. As of 2010, to our knowledge, there were no proven cases of toxicity in pregnant women, but there is evidence of damage to foetuses.

Risk to Diabetics

Cinnamon capsules are marketed as a way for diabetics to keep their blood sugar down. However, according to a report from the BFR, or the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment, risks are involved with using cinnamon lower blood sugar. The report suggests that there is no real proof that cinnamon really does this. The report also warns that people with diabetes can endanger their health when they stop taking other medicine in lieu of a natural cure, such a cinnamon, that may not work.

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