Taking cinnamon as a supplement can have effects on health and disease.
People use cinnamon as a supplement to treat problems with the digestive system, diabetes, loss of appetite, and other conditions.
It has also been used in traditional medicine for bronchitis.
There is a lack of evidence supporting these uses, however.
Cinnamon oil may help treat some types of fungal infections, such as Candida, according to results of a lab study, published in 2016.
Research published in 2003 in Diabetes Care found that cinnamon may help improve glucose and lipid levels in patients with type 2 diabetes.
Consuming up to 6 grams (g) of cinnamon a day appeared to lower serum glucose, triglyceride, LDL cholesterol, and total cholesterol in 60 people with type 2 diabetes.
The authors suggested that if people with type 2 diabetes include cinnamon in their diet, this may reduce their risk of diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.
Animal studies have suggested that cinnamon may help prevent Alzheimer’s disease.
A study of extracts of Indian medicinal plants found that cinnamon may help protect against HIV.
Of the 69 extracts tested in a lab, Cinnamomum cassia, or cinnamon bark, and Cardiospermum helicacabum, the cinnamon shoot and fruit, were most effective in reducing HIV activity.
This does not mean that foods containing cinnamon can treat or prevent HIV, but cinnamon extracts could one day be useful as part of a therapy.
Cinnamon has been tested for activity against multiple sclerosis (MS).
Researchers tested mice that had consumed a mixture of cinnamon powder and water. The findings suggested that cinnamon could have an anti-inflammatory effect on the central nervous system (CNS), including improvement in function in the hippocampus.
Studies have also suggested that cinnamon may protect regulatory T cells, known as Tregs. These are considered the “master regulator of immune responses.” People with MS appear to have a lower level of Tregs than people without the condition. In mouse studies, cinnamon treatment has prevented the loss of certain proteins that are specific to Tregs.
Lowering the negative effects of high fat meals
In 2011, researchers concluded that diets rich in “antioxidant spices,” including cinnamon, may help reduce the body’s negative response to eating high-fat meals.
Six people consumed dishes containing 14 g of a spice blend. Blood tests showed that antioxidant activity increased by 13 percent and insulin response fell by 20 percent.
Treating and healing chronic wounds
Research published in the journal ACS Nano suggests that scientists have found a way to package antimicrobial compounds from peppermint and cinnamon in tiny capsules that can both kill biofilms and actively promote healing.
In this way, peppermint and cinnamon could become part of a medicine for treating infected wounds.