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True Cinnamon versus Cinnamon Cassia

Many people who are interested to use cinnamon are confused about its two kinds – there is what they call true cinnamon and then there is the cinnamon cassia.
What is the difference between these two? What should I use if I want to take advantage of its nutritional benefits?
Cinnamon and Cassia: Different in Every Way
Cinnamon and cassia are from the same plant family (Lauraceae) and the same genus, Cinnamomum. However, cinnamon and cassia are not from the same plant family so people should not confuse them as one and the same. Their nutritional and health benefits are also very different.
The scientific name of the true cinnamon is “Ceylon cinnamon” and it is obtained from Cinnamomum zeylanicum plant. This kind is also known by the name Cinnamomum verum, which means "true cinnamon."

Cassia on the other hand is from a different species of cinnamon that includes Cinnamomum cassia(also known as Cinnamomum aromaticaum) and Cinnamomum burmannii.
Cassia is also often referred to as Chinese cinnamon, Saigon cinnamon, Java cinnamon and Padangcassia.

How to make a distinction between the two?

The true cinnamon or Ceylon cinnamon is rolled like a cigar and it is thin and brittle. On the other hand, cassia is thicker and harder because it is double-rolled. You will also find that Ceylon cinnamon cost more than cassia.

Those who want to use cinnamon for its health benefits especially in regulating blood sugar should use the Ceylon cinnamon

Cassia contains coumarin, a naturally occurring plant component that has anti-   coagulant properties. Too much intake of cassia with coumarin may cause health problems because our blood needs to maintain its ability to coagulate in times of injury.

If you buy cinnamon powder, then it would be hard to tell if it is made from Ceylon cinnamon or cassia. The only thing you can do is to buy from a manufacturer that clearly states its source.
If you are buying stick cinnamon, then you need to examine the texture of the sticks downward. In cassia cinnamon, you will notice it is just a one-piece bark without multiple layers. If the stick shows multiple layers at the end, then it is made from true cinnamon.

True cinnamon is recommended for those who plan to use it regularly as they do not pose any adverse health effects.

Cassia cinnamon is for those who only want to consume it on a limited basis because too much consumption can be harmful. It is best to choose organic cinnamon.

How to Use Cinnamon at Home

One element of good housekeeping is making sure that the house is not lacking in basic essentials. These are stuff that one should always have a stock at home; simply because of the variety of ways it can be used. Examples of these essentials are spices and condiments such as salt, pepper, vinegar, soy sauce and yes- adding cinnamon to that list is definitely a good idea.
Cinnamon is a very useful house product and listed below are some of the reasons why:
Instant air freshener: Walking into a room with fresh scent boost the mood and make relaxation easier. Instead of buying air fresheners that can be costly, why not put a dish of ground cinnamon in a room and enjoy the sweet scent.
Make an Incense. Use a match to ground cinnamon and you already have a pure incense. Just remember to put it in a heat-resistant container.
Make Your Own Moth Repellant Sachets. You will need small square pieces of fabrics as this is where you will put the cinnamon insect repellant mixture. Just combine cinnamon sticks which have been broken to small pieces (at least 4 sticks), half a cup of whole cloves and half a cup of black peppercorns (whole). You can put it in your closet to keep moths away.
Do you know other ways to use cinnamon? Please share by leaving a comment below

What Are the Health Benefits of Cinnamon

Why is Cinnamon Good For You

Can you eat and drink something delicious and still be healthy? People who will answer No are certainly unaware of cinnamon and its various benefits to one’s health. Cinnamon is a spice that is often an ingredient in many tasty recipes and desserts but do you know that aside from its value as food taste enhancer, adding cinnamon in your diet can also do wonders to your health.

Listed below are some of the reasons why you should consume cinnamon

Cinnamon is good for the heart because it can lower bad cholesterol and promote cardiovascular well-being. Thus cinnamon can prevent or cure heart problems.
People who are suffering from diabetes and hypoglycemia would also benefit from cinnamon because it can regulate blood sugar.

To use cinnamon to regulate blood sugar and lower cholesterol, try adding ½ teaspoon of cinnamon powder to regular meal.

The smell of cinnamon also has healing properties because the aromatherapeutic properties can instantly uplift one’s spirit.

Regular intake of cinnamon can also be a pain reliever as it can make pain from arthritis and menstrual pain more manageable. Studies have proven that cinnamon can lower cytokines- a compound that trigger discomfort in body parts with arthritis problems.

Important: Please be aware that cinnamon also has some side effects so before using cinnamon for health purposes, one is strongly advised to first consult a physician

What Is Cinnamon?

Cinnamon: A spice that is everything nice

Cinnamon is produced from the evergreen tree that belongs to thecinnamomum family. It is actually the dried inner bark of the evergreen tree that is harvested during the wet or rainy season because at that time, the bark would be more flexible and easy to handle.

The most common type of cinnamon is produced from thecinnamomum zeylanicum or Cassia Cinnamon plant that is a native tree in Sri Lanka. This explains why the name of the tree is actually derived from one island in Sri Lanka which is Ceylon.

Though the tree that produce cinnamon originates from Sri Lanka it can now be found in many countries such as IndiaBrazilEgypt and Vietnam. Cinnamon is also produced from the Ceylon Cinnamon plant. The cinnamon produced from Ceylon Cinnamon is said to be the True Cinnamon. True Cinnamon is lighter in color and cost more than the Cassia Cinnamon.

It originates from Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia but cinnamon is now a valuable spice that is used all over the world because it makes countless dishes and pastries more delicious.  

Cinnamon is more popular for its use as a spice but aside from making food tastes better, it also has lots of health benefits. Cinnamon can lower blood cholesterol, regulate blood sugar, relieves arthritis pain,etc. Cinnamon is also a good source of iron, fiber and calcium.

However, cinnamon intake also has some side effects. It is not recommended for pregnant women and people with diabetes because it contains coumarin which is a compound that can thin blood.

Buying Tips Fruits in Packs

My whole family loves fresh fruits and vegetables so these are always a part of my grocery list. And whether in a supermarket or a stall market in our neighborhood, I would always see fruits and veggies that are already neatly wrapped whether in a plastic or other attractive packaging.

I have bought some of those and almost every time, there would always be several pieces of fruits or vegetables that are stale or not fresh. It is easy not to notice them when buying because these fruits/veggies are hidden in the middle of the package. I am sure these are done on purpose and I always felt cheated by this strategy.

TIP: So I learned that in buying fruits and veggies it is wiser to just choose the unwrapped ones and though it may be time consuming, it is best to pick the fruits or vegetables by piece.
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