10 Ways to Lose Weight Fast With Cinnamon
Cinnamon is a spice that is derived from the bark of several species of trees. Used by cultures around the world since remote antiquity, cinnamon is native to Bangladesh, Burma, Sri Lanka and India. The earliest records of cinnamon use can be found as a trade commodity in ancient Egypt over 4000 years ago, and as a religious offering in ancient Greece. Cinnamon has traditionally been used as a food spice, as an incense, and as a traditional medicine.
The benefits of cinnamon aren’t limited to its distinct warming, sweet taste. Cinnamon has been demonstrated to offer a number of health benefits such as anti-inflammatory properties, blood sugar regulation, protection from cancer and heart disease, and antioxidant effects. Out of the 26 most popular medicinal herbs and botanical extracts in the world, cinnamon ranks number one in terms of antioxidant levels. Perhaps the most interesting application of cinnamon, however, is its ability to promote weight loss.
In this article, we’ll take a look at the way in which cinnamon can promote fast fat loss, provide helpful tips on using cinnamon for promoting health, and provide 10 creative ways to incorporate cinnamon into your diet.
How Does Cinnamon Promote Fat Loss?
Cinnamon possesses a number of unique properties that make it highly effective in burning away unwanted body fat. Reducing body fat generally requires adherence to a balanced diet combined with a regular exercise schedule, but factors such as poor metabolic function, high blood sugar levels, high cholesterol levels, and food cravings can make the process of weight loss more difficult.
Cinnamon offers four properties that promote overall better health and faster fat loss. Following, we discuss cinnamon weight loss benefits in great detail:
Cinnamon Weight Loss Benefits
1. Cinnamon Speeds Up Metabolic Function
The most important factor that determines how fast the body is able to shed unwanted fat is the metabolic rate. The metabolic rate of the body is the rate at which the body is able to burn calories. If your metabolic rate is slow, your body will take more time to convert food into energy, decreasing energy levels and increasing the rate at which the body stores fat.
Cinnamon extract offers two properties that can speed up metabolism. Firstly, cinnamon has been scientifically proven to speed up the metabolism of sugar metabolism in the body. In a 2006 study, cinnamon bark extract was conclusively proven to increase the rate at which the metabolism is able to break down and harness the energy of sugars. When consumed as a dietary supplement, cinnamon is able to boost overall metabolic function and increase the rate at which the body burns energy.
The second property of cinnamon that enhances metabolic rates is the thermogenic ability of cinnamon bark extract. Cinnamon is a thermogenic food, meaning that when consumed it causes the body to generate excess body heat. This process requires additional caloric expenditure that would otherwise be stored as fat. By increasing energy expenditure and increasing metabolic rates, cinnamon can dramatically speed up the ability of the body to shed unwanted weight.
2. Cinnamon Can Regulate Insulin Levels & Blood Sugar Levels
Insulin plays an important role in the body, regulating blood sugar levels. Most people associate insulin with diabetes, but insulin balance is important even in non-diabetics. It’s possible for your body to become resistant to insulin due to either genetic inheritance or lifestyle factors. This condition is called insulin resistance, and in a 2013 study was demonstrated to be a primary cause of weight gain.
Over 80 million people in the US alone suffer from insulin resistance, a contributing cause to the 35.7 percent obesity rate of the country. Cinnamon has been demonstrated in multiple clinical trials to dramatically improve or even repair insulin resistance and sensitivity, causing blood sugar regulation to return to normal.
A 2010 meta-study assessing over 50 separate peer-reviewed studies of the health effects of cinnamon, performed by the United States Department of Agriculture, conclusively determined that cinnamon decreases insulin sensitivity in humans.
A separate 2008 study performed by the Beltsville Human Nutrition Research Center determined that cinnamon contains high amounts of chromium and polyphenols, both of which reduce insulin resistance, balance blood sugar levels, and lower body fat percentage.
3. Cinnamon Lowers Cholesterol Levels
Cholesterol is a type of fat that is found in the bloodstream. There are two types of cholesterol, LDL cholesterol and HDL cholesterol. LDL cholesterol is the bad type of cholesterol, which causes plaque to build up in the arteries. High LDL cholesterol levels are linked with an increased risk of heart attack, as well as dramatically lowering cardiovascular and circulatory health.
High cholesterol levels are directly linked to unhealthy BMI, or body mass index. A high BMI is a clear indicator of obesity. Several clinical trials have demonstrated a clear link between high LDL cholesterol and a high BMI. In a 2012 study, cinnamon was proven to reduce LDL cholesterol levels as well as lower overall food intake. Another 2014 study determined, amongst other health benefits, that cinnamon can lower both HDL and LDL cholesterol levels.
By lowering cholesterol levels, cinnamon is able to reduce overall BMI and thus acts as a powerful weight loss tool. This effect has a number of useful health benefits outside of weight loss, lowering the risk of both cancer and heart disease.
4. Cinnamon Reduces Appetite & Food Cravings
Food cravings are one of the biggest roadblocks experienced by individuals seeking to lose weight. To lose weight effectively, it’s important to adhere to a diet that supplies a caloric deficit, or fewer calories than the body requires to function.
A caloric deficit will cause the body to harvest energy from fat deposits, but will cause hunger pangs. There is evidence to support the use of cinnamon as a gentle appetite suppressant that reduces these hunger impulses.
A 2014 study performed at the University of Cairo concluded that an aqueous extract of cinnamon was able to reduce appetite levels, as well as offer protection against liver disease, prevent the onset of diabetes, prevent obesity, and function as a powerful antioxidant.
When combined with the thermogenic, metabolism boosting properties of cinnamon, the appetite suppressing qualities of this unique spice make it a highly effective tool for promoting rapid weight loss.
How to Incorporate Cinnamon Into Your Diet
One of the most attractive aspects of using cinnamon as a weight loss aid is that it’s available almost everywhere and relatively low cost. In addition, cinnamon can be a delicious additive that adds flavor to many dishes. Let’s take a look at 10 different recipes and techniques you can use to increase your cinnamon intake.
1. Cinnamon & Honey Tea
One of the most effective ways of incorporating cinnamon into your diet is also the simplest. Drinking cinnamon mixed with water on an empty stomach delivers highly bioavailable polyphenols to your digestive system that increase the amount of “good bacteria”, or probiotics, in your body. Probiotic balance promotes better metabolic function, which increase the rate at which the body can lose weight.
Adding honey to this mixture improves flavor, provides a low-glycemic energy burst and an additional cholesterol-lowering effect. This beverage is not only an easy way to improve weight loss, but also tastes great and minimizes food cravings.
What You’ll Need
- Organic honey
- Cinnamon powder or cinnamon sticks
- Boil 1 cup of water in a saucepan and add either one teaspoon of cinnamon or two cinnamon sticks. Simmer for two minutes
- Remove the cinnamon tea from the heat. Let it cool for two minutes. If you’ve added cinnamon sticks, remove them at this point.
- Add one tablespoon of honey to the tea and stir well.
- Drink and enjoy.
For best results, drink cinnamon and honey tea twice daily in the morning and evening. Cinnamon and honey tea can also be taken to help deal with hunger pangs and food cravings while dieting.
2. Cinnamon & Apple Oatmeal
Oatmeal is a great low-carb, low glycemic breakfast food that provides slow burning energy throughout the day. Carbs are converted by the body into blood sugar that is stored as body fat, so by replacing high carb breakfast foods with oats you’ll improve the rate at which you lose unwanted weight. Apples contain an organic compound called pectin, which reduces the total amount of calories that are absorbed by the body after a meal and suppresses the appetite.
When combined with the fat-burning properties of cinnamon, apple and oatmeal create a powerful fat-burning breakfast energy boost that can power you throughout the day while promoting higher metabolic function. Oatmeal is also a great source of vitamins and essential minerals that improve overall health.
What You’ll Need
- Oatmeal or oats
- 2 Cups milk
- 1 ½ cup water
- Powdered cinnamon
- Honey (optional)
- Combine water and milk in a saucepan.
- Slice apple into small chunks and add to saucepan.
- Heat on medium setting until mixture is near boiling. If using honey, add it in at this point.
- Add oats and cinnamon and cook for 5-6 minutes, stirring regularly.
- Allow to cool and serve warm.
If you’d like to add a little extra flavor to this recipe, consider adding either dried fruits or vanilla extract. This dish is incredibly tasty and healthy at the same time, offering a guilt-free and delicious start to the day while boosting weight loss and lowering cholesterol.
3. Banana Cinnamon Smoothie
Smoothies are a great anytime food. Smoothies can be used as a breakfast replacement, as a quick healthy snack, or to help deal with food cravings. Incorporating cinnamon into your smoothies will both enhance the flavor and provide a dramatic increase in metabolic function and energy levels, as well as sweeten recipes without the need for sugar.
Bananas contain a high amount of dietary fiber, which helps to reduce food cravings, as well as several critical nutrients that promote better digestive health, heart health, and promote weight loss. Bananas are also a great source of antioxidants that flush toxins and chemicals from the body, improving overall health and reducing the impact of inflammation.
What You’ll Need
- 1 ½ teaspoon cinnamon powder
- 1 cup milk
- 2 tablespoons oats
- 4-6 ice cubes
- Organic honey
- Add the banana, cinnamon, honey, oats and ice cubes into a blender
- Blend on high until a smooth, creamy consistency is reached
- Serve ice cold
This recipe is a great energy booster on hot days and provides an instant hit of cinnamon and essential nutrients. Consider adding vanilla extract or sliced strawberries to increase sweetness without sugar. If you’re under any dietary restrictions that prevent you from using milk, you can replace it with either almond or soy milk.
4. Apple & Cinnamon Infused Ice Water
Many people keep a container of ice water in their fridge to cool down on hot days. Infusing water with cinnamon and apple is a great way to both add highly bioavailable cinnamon to the digestive system and reduce food cravings, as well as lower body temperature in hot weather.
What You’ll Need
- A jug or water container
- Cinnamon sticks
- Slice the apple into thin slices and place half in the bottle of the water jug.
- Add cinnamon sticks and fill the jug to the halfway point with ice, covering with the other half of the sliced apple.
- Fill jug with water and place in refrigerator.
- Pour & enjoy.
Note that this recipe is best used within 24 hours. The pectin from the sliced apple will be absorbed by the water, offering appetite suppressing properties, while the cinnamon will improve the flavor of the water and increases the rate at which your body is able to burn fat.
5. Healthy Cinnamon Rolls
Cinnamon rolls are generally regarded as unhealthy indulgences that actively add to excess body fat, not reduce it. However, it’s possible to create healthy cinnamon rolls by using low-calorie ingredients that will function as a guilt-free, fat burning treat. One of the best parts about baking cinnamon rolls at home is the scent of baking cinnamon and dough wafting through the house.
The most difficult aspect of making cinnamon rolls at home is getting the dough right. There’s a trick to creating perfect dough every time- prepare it the night before! In this recipe, we’ll break down the instructions into separate sections for both the dough and the filling.
What You’ll Need
- 1 cup milk
- ⅓ cup water
- 2 ¼ teaspoons instant yeast
- 2 tablespoons coconut sugar
- 16 ounces white whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ⅓ cup organic brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons ground or powdered sugar
- ⅛ teaspoon sea salt
- 2 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
- 1 ½ tablespoons light cream
- ¼ cup powdered sugar (optional)
To make the dough for the cinnamon rolls, combine the milk, water, yeast, coconut sugar, flour and salt into a mixer and stir well. After mixing, knead for five minutes, or until the dough is smooth. Before working the dough further, place it into an airtight container and let it sit in the fridge overnight.
Filling & Baking Instructions
- Combine the brown sugar, cinnamon and sea salt into a small mixing bowl.
- Using a rolling pin, flatten the dough you prepared earlier into a rectangle. Brush with melted butter
- Sprinkle the flattened and prepared dough with the cinnamon, sugar and salt mix
- Roll the dough into a long tube with the mixture inside
- Using a sharp knife, cut the roll into slices roughly 1 ¼ inches thick
- Preheat oven to 350°F
- Bake until golden brown. Cool for 10 minutes after baking.
If you’d like to keep your cinnamon rolls super healthy, it’s best not to use icing. If you’d like to use icing on your cinnamon rolls, combine the cream and powdered sugar until they create a smooth consistency, then drizzle over the cinnamon rolls before serving.
6. Sprinkle Cinnamon Over Food
If you don’t have enough time to bake cinnamon rolls, or aren’t a fan of smoothies or oats, the simplest way of incorporating cinnamon into your diet is to simply sprinkle it onto your food. Cinnamon can be dusted over chopped banana or apple, or included in applesauce. Morning breakfast cereals like corn flakes can be enhanced by mixing with cinnamon, or mixing cinnamon into milk drinks can be a great way to improve flavor while burning fat.
7. Hot Cinnamon Cocoa
Hot cinnamon cocoa is a delicious and healthy winter treat that’s perfect on cold, rainy days. Cocoa has a number of fat burning properties that are extremely similar to cinnamon. Much like cinnamon, cocoa is thermogenic, increasing body temperature and causing the body to burn more calories. Cocoa is also rich in flavonoids, which lower blood pressure, and is richer in antioxidants than green tea.
What You’ll Need
- ¼ cup cocoa
- ¼ cup sugar (replace with honey for a healthier option)
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup boiling water
- 3 cups scalded milk
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Combine the cocoa, sugar (or honey) and salt in a saucepan. While on a medium heat, slowly add boiling water while stirring.
- Boil for two minutes while stirring.
- Add cinnamon sticks and milk, heating on a low setting for 10 minutes.
- Remove cinnamon sticks and whisk to froth milk.
- Serve hot. This recipe makes four cups of healthy cinnamon cocoa.
8. Simple Banana & Cinnamon Toast
Cinnamon toast is a great way to add cinnamon into your diet if you’re in a hurry during the morning. Replacing butter with banana in this recipe is an effective and tasty way to reduce your saturated fat intake while boosting your nutrient intake. Banana is a low-glycemic fruit that will power you through the day without being converted into fat, while cinnamon will boost your metabolic rate and promote faster fat loss.
What You’ll Need
- Sliced bread
- Ground or powdered cinnamon
- Place two slices of bread in your toaster
- Peel and slice banana
- Place banana in a small bowl. Using a fork, mash the banana until it reaches a smooth consistency.
- Once toast is done, spread with banana paste.
- Sprinkle toast with 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon per slice.
- Serve hot.
9. Sweet Potato & Cinnamon Soup
Sweet potatoes are an excellent source of vitamin C, vitamin A, Vitamins B1, B6 and B2, and dietary fiber. Sweet potato & cinnamon soup is a tasty, warming winter dish perfect for increasing the amount of cinnamon in your diet.
What You’ll Need
- 4 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 lb sliced carrots
- 1 large chopped onion
- 2 cloves chopped garlic
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 lb sweet potato
- Chicken stock
- 2 dried bay leaves
- Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Add carrots, onions, and garlic, cooking until slightly soft. Stir on medium heat until onion is brown, which generally takes 8-10 minutes. Add spices and stir for an additional minute.
- Add chopped sweet potatoes, chicken stock, bay leaves and six cups of water and boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat and simmer until the vegetables are soft.
- Remove the bay leaves from the soup. Serve as is, or blend to achieve a smooth consistency.
10. Nutty Cinnamon Quinoa
Quinoa is known as a “superfood”. High in protein, gluten free, low carb and rich in all nine essential amino acids, quinoa is a great source of many of the macronutrients required to maintain a healthy body. Combined with nuts and cinnamon, quinoa makes a great healthy snack or dessert that promotes rapid weight loss.
What You’ll Need
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup rinsed organic quinoa
- 2 cups fresh organic blackberries
- ½ teaspoon ground or powdered cinnamon
- ⅓ cup chopped roasted pecan nuts
- 4 teaspoons honey
- Combine water, milk and quinoa in saucepan. Bring to boil on a high heat.
- After mixture has reached boil, lower to medium heat and simmer for 15 minutes until the quinoa absorbs all of the liquid.
- Remove from heat and cool for 15 minutes.
- Stir in blackberries, cinnamon and honey.
- Serve in a bowl with pecan nuts sprinkled over the top.
Cinnamon Tips, Tricks & Facts
The ideal amount of cinnamon to consume daily is ½ teaspoon. This amount of cinnamon provides the best balance of bioactive agents and has been demonstrated to significantly reduce cholesterol levels and contribute to fast weight loss. The maximum amount of cinnamon you should take daily is two teaspoons.
There are several different types of plants from which cinnamon is harvested, but the most common forms are Ceylon cinnamon and Cassia cinnamon. Ceylon cinnamon is considered to be the most effective source for weight loss, as it contains low levels of coumarin, which has been associated with liver damage when taken in large amounts on a regular basis. Other forms of cinnamon may have a higher concentration of coumarin.
The benefits of cinnamon aren’t limited to weight loss. Cinnamon has also been shown to assist with heart disease, diarrhea, urinary tract infections, poor digestive function, inflammatory diseases such as arthritis, bad breath, mental focus and reducing flu symptoms.
While cinnamon is an effective weight loss enhancing tool, simply consuming cinnamon won’t cause you to lose weight. Cinnamon is most effective when taken in combination with a balanced dietary regimen that provides all of the macronutrients the body needs while avoiding sugars, carbs, salt and transfats. A lightweight exercise program and a diet that delivers a caloric deficit will assist greatly with any attempt at weight loss.
Cinnamon is also used to treat polycystic ovary syndrome, which is caused by hormonal imbalances that can be remedied with the active ingredients in cinnamon bark. Other uses for cinnamon include use as a mouth or breath freshener, an incense, and even as a perfume.
Cinnamon Health Risks & Precautions
Supplementing the diet with cinnamon can offer a wide range of health benefits, but as with any supplement, it’s best to avoid overindulgence. Never consume cinnamon if you have any allergies, and if you’re not sure always check with a doctor or medical professional before beginning supplementation.
Cinnamon can also interact with some pharmaceutical medicines. The anticoagulant properties of cinnamon can cause adverse reactions when combined with a select number of medications. If unsure, always check with your doctor for any potential conflicts before beginning supplementation.
Nursing or pregnant women should always check with a doctor or medical professional before consuming large amounts of cinnamon over an extended period of time. One of the major indicators of excessive cinnamon consumption is a swollen tongue.
Excessive cinnamon intake can also cause skin irritation, irritation of the digestive system, drowsiness, dizziness, a dry throat, and dangerously low blood sugar levels. As a general rule, never consume more than two teaspoons of cinnamon in one day.
Cinnamon Weight Loss Benefits Conclusion!
Overall, cinnamon is a highly effective weight loss supplement and offers a broad spectrum of benefits, but always be sure to limit consumption to a reasonable level and listen to your body.