Cinnamon essential oil offers many health benefits by virtue of its primary compounds, linalool, eugenol and cinnamaldehyde. About 82% of the oil is composed of these special compounds. The cinnamon plant is native to South Asia, but is now grown in various countries of Asia and the oil and the dried spice is exported throughout the world. Cinnamon oil is said to be more efficacious than the dried spice as it has high levels of antioxidants in concentrated form. Two main varieties of cinnamon essential oil i.e. cinnamon bark oil and cinnamon leaf oil are commercially available. The one extracted from the outer bark of the tree is deep reddish brown in colour, has a strong smell, is very potent and costlier as well.
Whereas, cinnamon leaf oil is yellowish or darker in color and has a spicy and musky fragrance. Cinnamon oil offers many health benefits like reducing blood sugar and blood cholesterol levels, fighting inflammation and infections, enhancing immunity. Cinnamon essential oil blends well with certain other essential oils like rose, peppermint, vanilla, ginger, bergamot, clove, cardamom, orange and nutmeg. It is used for topical application, diffused at home or inhaled directly or applied to clothes and skin for aromatherapy and the organic and high graded one can be ingested as well in small quantities. For oral ingestion, a drop of cinnamon essential oil can be combined with water, fruit juices and honey. You can use it for cooking as well but exposure to very high temperatures or prolonged cooking can make it lose its active components. (1)
10 Proven Benefits Of Cinnamon Oil
The following are the proven benefits of cinnamon oil
- 10 Proven Benefits Of Cinnamon Oil
1. Beneficial For Our Skin, Lips And Hair:
Anti inflammatory properties of Cinnamon oil are beneficial for the skin as it can serve as a natural remedial agent for acne and rashes. A study done on cinnamon bark essential oil revealed that it has the potential of inhibiting synthesis of various protein biomarkers that cause inflammation of skin and remodeling of tissues. Cinnamon oil’s antimicrobial benefits can also be reaped by combining it with a carrier oil and then topically applying it on the skin. A completely natural honey and cinnamon oil based face wash can be prepared at home to combat epidermal infections and inflammations. You need to blend 3 tablespoons of raw honey with 1 tablespoon each of apple cider vinegar and pure coconut oil, 20 drops of cinnamon essential oil and 2 live probiotic capsules. Store it in a cool place and use it. Applying a combination of a tablespoon of coconut oil and two drops of cinnamon essential oil is good to keep your lips supple by promoting blood circulation. As far as your hair is concerned, cinnamon oil is said to enhance its growth and health. In order to take care of your scalp naturally, a combination of cinnamon and almond essential oils can be tried out. (1)
2. Can Help With Sore Throat:
As cinnamon oil has antimicrobial, immunomodulatory, anti inflammatory and antioxidant properties, it can be beneficial for throat infections. A mix of honey, cinnamon oil, and hot lemon water taken in the morning empty stomach is said to be good for easing throat soreness, associated pain and enhancing immunity.
3. Manages Sugar Levels In Our Blood:
Studies done on animals and human beings have revealed the positive effect of cinnamon essential oil on release of insulin. This in turn could be beneficial in stabilizing sugar levels, thereby controlling sugar pangs, mood switches, persistent fatigue and tendency to overeat. In a study, sixty Type 2 diabetes patients were given cinnamon supplementation in the dose of one, three and six grams for 40 days. Substantial decrease was seen in their levels of blood glucose, LDL cholesterol, triglycerides and total cholesterol level. Pure and high grade cinnamon oil should be used for oral consumption. Moreover, inhalation of cinnamon oil can also keep a check on your food cravings.
4. Good For Our Heart:
Cinnamon oil is considered a natural heart health boosting agent. A combination of cinnamon bark extract and aerobic exercise was able to enhance performance of heart in an animal study. It also lowered LDL cholesterol and total cholesterol levels and increased the HDL cholesterol level which is good for heart. Cinnamon also works in favour of our heart by increasing synthesis of nitric oxide. This is especially good for someone who has had a stroke or a heart attack or is suffering from heart disease. The antiplatelet and anti-inflammatory components of cinnamon oil are also beneficial for our arteries.
5. May Help In Weight Management:
Cinnamon is capable of balancing sugar levels and control hunger pangs for sweet-tasting foods. The chemical compound cinnamaldehyde present in cinnamon oil may assist fat cells in burning of energy. Cinnamaldehyde was found to be effective in both human and animal fat cells in initiating metabolic as well as thermogenic reactions. This could be effective in helping one lose weight and thereby avert obesity. Energy drain, eating excessively and gaining of weight are related to fluctuating levels of sugar in our blood. Addition of cinnamon oil to tea, smoothies, fruits, baked products and oats can help tackle the glucose release rate in our blood.
6. Beneficial For Ulcers:
Eugenol present in cinnamon essential oil bestows it with ulcer fighting properties. A study revealed that eugenol was successful in reducing gastric ulcers induced by ethanol. Not only did it reduce the total number of ulcers, but it was also effective on hampering its severity. In another study, cinnamon extract was found to be effective to a certain extent in bringing down colonization of ulcer causing H. pylori bacteria. Cinnamon extract was given two times a day at the dose of 40 milligrams for a month to 15 patients having Helicobacter pylori. The oil was well tolerated by them.
7. Can Help With Parasitic Infections:
Cinnamon oil is said to work on parasitic infections by upsetting their biosynthesis of amino acids which they require to be alive. An in vitro study revealed that cinnamon could retard malaria causing parasite Plasmodium falciparum. In another study, cinnamon extracts in combination with ginger were found to be effective for giardiasis caused by G. lamblia parasite.
8. Has Antifungal Properties:
Non albicans Candida has become one of the major causes of mortality and morbidity stemming from fungal infections. Many of the Candida species have become resistant to antifungal drugs like fluconazole and echinocandins and thereby cause Candidemia. In such situations, natural alternatives or plant based essential oils can come to rescue as they are known to possess antimicrobial property. A one year in vitro study was conducted to test the impact of olive oil and cinnamon oil on Candida spp. that were isolated from the blood stream of Candida patients. Candida isolates were speciated with conventional antifungal agents as well as the two oils. It was seen that cinnamon oil and olive oil were effective in almost 50 percent of the blood samples. Around 55.5% of C. krusei strains that were resistant to fluconazole were found to be responding to olive oil and cinnamon oil. (2) Effect of cinnamon oil on formation of hyphae and biofilm by Candida was also analyzed in a study. Irrespective of development in antifungal therapies, the rate of occurrence and casualty associated with candida biofilm related infections is quite challenging. The study tested the antivirulent and antibiofilm effects of patchouli, camphor and cinnamon essential oil. Cinnamon essential oil was found to be most effective in inhibiting biofilms of three strains of Candida. (3)
9. Can Improve Sexual Dysfunctioning:
In Ayurvedic medicine, cinnamon extracts are often prescribed as alternative therapy for sexual dysfunctioning. In a study done on aged rats, methanol extract of cinnamon was found to be effective in reinstating sexual activity. They were given cinnamon extract in the dose of 100 mg per kg of their body weight and their behavior was noted on the 28th day. The penile tissue had lower collagen levels and higher smooth muscles. (4) Cinnamon essential oil is considered to be an aphrodisiac. It tends to improve sexual desire in both men and women. Various compounds present in the oil improve blood circulation in sexual organs and affect the enzymes involved in the nitric oxide pathway and thereby naturally work against impotence. (5)
10. Beneficial For Pain Management:
By virtue of its component eugenol, cinnamon essential oil serves as a good alternative to clove oil for management of tooth and gum related aches. You can take few drops of cinnamon leaf essential oil in a cotton ball and place it on your aching tooth. Cinnamon oil can also be used for easing arthritis related pain. You just need to mix four to five drops of the oil with a carrier oil like mustard or coconut oil, warm it and massage it on your aching joints daily. Moreover, headaches may also be healed using cinnamon essential oil. You just need to diffuse few drops on your pillow and its volatile components would enhance circulation of blood and ease you from a headache. (6)
Other Uses Of Cinnamon Essential Oil
The following are the uses of Cinnamon Essential Oil (7):
- Other Uses Of Cinnamon Essential Oil
1. Disinfecting Agent:
Bestowed with natural germ killing properties, cinnamon leaf essential oil can be used as a disinfectant for kitchen counters, toilets, knobs of our door, chopping boards, refrigerator, microwave etc.
2. Foot Soak Add On:
For sports personnel or people whose feet remain closed in shoes throughout the day, a warm foot soak to which this oil has been added is beneficial.
Cinnamon leaf essential oil can be added to water and used for gargling. Even dentures can be soaked in a combination of water, hydrogen peroxide and cinnamon leaf oil.
4. Works As An Insect Repellant:
Diffusing or spraying the oil in your house can deter insects like houseflies, cockroaches, ants and mosquitoes. Bed bugs can also be handled by spraying it on your mattress.
5. Shampoo Additive:
Adding a drop or two to your regular organic shampoo can help you get rid of lice and give you healthy hair.
6. Facial Scrub:
A combination of cinnamon leaf oil, olive oil, sugar and orange juice serves as an effective bactericidal and refreshing facial scrub.
7. Combine With Other Oils:
You can use cinnamon oil in combination with other oils. Like for using it in a diffuser to ease respiratory problems combine it with frankincense oil and eucalyptus essential oil. Cinnamon oil can be combined with sweet orange oil for culinary purposes. To be used for spraying and cleaning combine it with citrus and clove oil. For topical therapeutic application dilute with lavender and ginger essential oil. (8)
8. Used In Perfumes And Room Fresheners:
As cinnamon oil has a pleasant and refreshing aroma it is used in perfumes and room fresheners. (9)
9. Cinnamon Oil Aromatherapy Can Be Used As A Depression Therapy:
Warming and aromatic properties of the oil is said to be good for the brain. Inhaling the oil for just thirty seconds can help diminish negative feelings by calming your mind.
10. Can Have Protective Effect On Our Pancreas:
Addition of one or two drops of the oil to your vegetables can help protect the pancreas. You can even massage it over your abdomen to reap the pancreas protection benefits.
11. Digestive Massage:
Adding few drops to your food as well as massaging the oil on your abdomen for five minutes is said to enhance digestive functioning.
Precautions Related To Use Of Cinnamon Oil
The following are the precautions related to use of cinnamon oil (9):
- For topical application, you need to dilute cinnamon essential oil with a carrier oil as in concentrated forms it can cause adverse effects on your epidermis. Do a patch test in a small portion of your skin.
- Do not apply the oil on sensitive areas of your body.
- For internal consumption, only a small amount is to be used.
- Children below the age of 10 years, pregnant and lactating women need to avoid its usage.
- In high doses, cinnamon oil is associated with convulsions, sores in mouth and irritation of skin.