The Many Health Benefits of Cinnamon Spice

 

The Many Health Benefits of Cinnamon SpiceCinnamon is a common spice to have during the holidays, but did you know it also has a lot of health benefits? Cinnamon is not only loaded with vitamins and minerals, but it can be really good for serious illnesses.

Cinnamon Has Lots of Nutrients

Many people are surprised when they learn of all the nutrients from this simple spice. Cinnamon has no fat, protein or sugar, and a small number of calories. It is a good source of fiber, vitamin K, iron, manganese, and calcium. It also has some antioxidant abilities, which as you know helps to fight off certain illnesses and infections. Since the cold and flu are both common during the holiday season, it is good to add to your different snacks and treats during this time of year.

It Can Help With Type 2 Diabetes

There are a lot of medical conditions that cinnamon helps with, and among them is type 2 diabetes. It won’t help to prevent or even cure diabetes, but it can be good at helping to manage the disease. Cinnamon has a positive impact on blood pressure, so by reducing blood pressure, it helps to avoid any complications that are common with this type of diabetes. Cinnamon is also good at reducing insulin resistance, so someone with diabetes might have better blood sugar levels.

Additional cinnamon info:
While technically a spice, cinnamon can also be considered a natural herb to help with anti-aging. For your skin, cinnamon provides those precious anti-inflammatory compounds in many of the herbs and other natural remedies for anti-aging. The cinnamon can also protect your body in other ways, including arthritis and with things like tooth disease and bacteria in the body. This helps reduce stress on the body, which also helps reduce stress on your face.

Easy Ways To Add More Cinnamon To Your Diet

 

Cinnamon is an Anti-Inflammatory

Another important benefit of cinnamon is the fact that it contains excellent anti-inflammatory capabilities. Inflammation can affect many things going on in your body, from arthritis of your joints, to brain function, heart disease, and even cancer. There are flavonoid compounds in cinnamon, which is why they are good at fighting inflammation, particularly dangerous inflammation that leads to cardiovascular issues and serious diseases.

Your Heart Health is Protected

As mentioned already, cinnamon is really good for your cardiovascular health. At any age, it is important to protect your heart and related functions. Whether you are a high risk for heart problems or not, adding a little cinnamon to your diet never hurts. It has a lot of nutrients as well, so this is just an added bonus.

Lowers LDL Cholesterol Levels

High cholesterol can have a devastating impact on the health. It can lead to atherosclerosis, which clogs up the arteries, reducing blood flow and increasing the risk of heart disease. Therefore, it’s no wonder health experts stress the need for us to watch our cholesterol levels.

Cinnamon is known to reduce the levels of LDL(bad) cholesterol, while also increasing the levels of HDL (good) cholesterol. So, if you’re looking to combat high cholesterol, you’ll want to start adding cinnamon to your daily diet.
So by using this spice you can help lower your cholesterol and blood pressure, both of which are risks for heart disease. Sprinkle cinnamon on your coffee, have some cinnamon cake for breakfast, or add it to your smoothie and you will benefit from it.

Improves Brain Function

If you’re looking to give your brain a little boost, cinnamon can help. It’s said to improve memory, eliminate nervous tension and boost cognitive function.

So, if you’ve got a test you need to study for, or you’re worried your memory isn’t what it used to be, you may want to start adding cinnamon to your diet.

It’s a Superfood That Offers Tons Of Antioxidants

Antioxidants are required by the body to fight off illnesses and combat the damage caused by free radicals. Now, many foods contain antioxidants, but cinnamon has one of the highest contents of any food, including super foods such as garlic.

In particular, it contains polyphenol antioxidants. These are known to help slow down the progression of Diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and even cancer. Put simply, cinnamon is one of the best foods you can add to your daily diet to keep the body healthy.

Beneficial in the Treatment of Neurodegenerative Diseases

There’s been a few studies which have shown cinnamon can have beneficial effects of Neurodegenerative diseases. Perhaps the most common types of these diseases are Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s Disease.

It’s reported that cinnamon contains two compounds which are able to prevent the tau protein from building up; a protein linked to Alzheimer’s disease.

However, the studies so far have been conducted on mice with Neurodegenerative diseases so further research is required on humans.

Help Fight Fungal and Bacterial Infections

Cinnamon’s main active ingredient “Cinnamaldehyde”, has the potential to fight a range of infections. Respiratory infections for example, have been known to be treated by cinnamon oil.

It has also shown to have the power to prevent particularly nasty bacteria such as Salmonella and Listeria from developing.

Those suffering from tooth decay and bad breath may also benefit from cinnamon’s antimicrobial effects. For this purpose, cinnamon powder would be most beneficial.

 

 

Cinnamon For Health – Different Forms of Cinnamon You Can Buy

If you’re looking to gain the health benefits of cinnamon, you may be wondering which form you should be investing in. 

When most people think of cinnamon, they think of either the ground or the stick varieties. However, there’s actually numerous different forms available. Below, we’ll look at the various forms on offer and how they’re typically used.

Cinnamon Oil

Out of all of the different forms of cinnamon available, cinnamon oil is the one many people have never heard of. It contains a very high antioxidant content which makes it ideal for medical use.

Although classed as an essential oil, it is possible to digest small amounts of cinnamon oil. For example, it can be used in cooking, placed into a cup of tea, or even placed onto the toothbrush. It’s worth noting here that with any of these methods, you’re only using 1-2 drops, so it’s not something you can consume in large quantities.

It’s said to boast many health benefits including the promotion of circulation, it boosts oral health, it acts as a natural aphrodisiac and helps to maintain a healthy immune system.

Cinnamon Sticks

Cinnamon sticks are pretty common and they can be used in a variety of ways. They’re used to add flavor to foods and drinks and they also release a beautiful aroma.

You can add them to soups, tea, rice and mulled wine for a mouth-watering flavor. Alternatively, they can also be used for non-cooking purposes such as a foot wash. Adding 2-3 cinnamon sticks into hot water is said to relieve conditions such as Athletes foot.

Cinnamon Powder

This is potentially the most well-known form of cinnamon and it’s most commonly used in baking. It’s also referred to as ground cinnamon, so if you see “Cinnamon powder” in one store and “Ground Cinnamon” in another, they’re basically the same thing.

Like other forms, the powder can be used for a range of other purposes including a hair mask, a bath powder and even as an ant repellent.

Cinnamon Pills

Finally, you’ll come across cinnamon pills. These are basically supplements, designed to give you the health benefits of cinnamon, without the overpowering taste. Compared to other varieties, they’re the easiest to digest.

As you can see, there’s lots of different forms of cinnamon out there and each has its own unique use. When choosing the right form for you, take into account what you’re using the cinnamon for and how you want to use it.

Understanding the Different Types of Cinnamon – Most Popular Types of Cinnamon

 

 

Many people have no idea there’s many different species of cinnamon as it’s often associated as a universal spice.

Each type has a slightly different flavor and they also offer their own unique benefits and potential side effects. Here, you’ll discover the most popular types of cinnamon and the differences between them.

Understanding the Different Types of Cinnamon

There’s a huge amount of different types of cinnamon, but few of them are used for commercial purposes. The most popular types you’re likely to come across either in the grocery or health store, include:

* Ceylon
* Saigon
* Cassia
* Korintje

Ceylon has the strongest flavor and scent and tends to be best used for baking. Saigon cinnamon originates from Vietnam and it has a slightly sweeter taste, yet still retains a powerful scent and flavor. Cassia cinnamon is otherwise referred to as Chinese cinnamon and it’s often used in Chinese medicine. Out of the different types, Cassia cinnamon is much poorer quality.

The Saigon, Cassia and Korintje are often grouped together and classified simply as Cassia cinnamon, due to their strong similarities.

Out of the four commercial varieties, Ceylon is the most popular, as well as the most beneficial types available. Referred to as “True Cinnamon”, it’s much softer and more brittle than the others. It also has a lower Coumarin content, which can be potentially dangerous to the health.

What is Coumarin?

Coumarin is a substance which has links to liver damage. All of the Cassia types of cinnamon contain high levels of Coumarin so it’s important to limit your consumption.

Beware of the Dangers of Coumarin

In some cases, Coumarin can lead to total liver failure. It’s for this reason the German Government actually decided to ban the sale of Cassia type cinnamon at one point. Many people are unaware of the dangers these types of cinnamon come with and are drawn to them for their cheaper price.

It is worth noting that if liver damage does occur due to an excessive Coumarin content, experts claim it is reversible. However, with Ceylon cinnamon readily available, it makes sense to avoid the risk entirely and simply opt for this low Coumarin variety.

Know Different Cinnamon Types For Best Results

It’s definitely worth being aware of the different types of cinnamon available. While Cassia varieties tend to be cheaper, they do contain high levels of Coumarin which you need to be wary of. If you’re opting to include cinnamon in your daily diet for its health benefits, you’d be better off sticking to Ceylon cinnamon.

Which Cranberry Type is Better? Is There a Difference in Nutrition?

Which Cranberry Type is Better?

Like many other foods, cranberries come in a variety of forms. As well as the standard fresh cranberries found in grocery stores, you can also take them in extract, dried and juice formation.

Is There a Difference in Nutrition?

The question is, if you’re looking to experience the benefits cranberries have to offer, which form is better?

Although all forms of cranberry are good for the health, some do contain stronger health benefits than others.

Fresh Cranberries

If you’re looking to gain maximum benefits, you’ll want to stick to either fresh whole cranberries or cranberry extract. This is because both of these types have been largely unaltered and cranberries in their natural state have the highest concentration of antioxidants.

Cranberry Extract

However, it’s worth noting not all cranberry extracts contain the same amount of benefits. You’ll need to make sure you’re choosing a high-quality, well-known extract if you want to experience maximum benefits.

Dried Cranberries

Dried cranberries do offer some nutritional value, but they also contain a lot of natural and added sugar. So, they’re largely advised as a healthy snack.

Cranberry Juice

Similarly, cranberry juice can have a lot of added sugar and it’s also not as concentrated as other forms. So, its nutritional content is again limited.

Potential Side Effects of Cranberries

Another thing to keep in mind when you’re choosing which form of cranberry to include in your diet, is the potential side effects.

Fresh Cranberries

Fresh, whole cranberries don’t typically have side effects unless you’re consuming an unhealthy amount. They don’t have anything added, so if you’re looking for the most natural and safest way of adding cranberries to your diet, you’ll want to invest in the fresh ones.

Dried Cranberries & Juice

Dried cranberries and cranberry juice on the other hand, can cause numerous health issues. Due to the added sugar content, they can prove detrimental to blood sugar levels and be potentially dangerous for those with Diabetes.

The added sugar also isn’t great for those watching their weight. So, if you’re on a diet and you’re looking for a healthy snack, be wary of consuming too many dried cranberries.

Cranberry Extract

Cranberry extract should also be taken with caution. While high-quality extracts can be really beneficial, in the long-term they can lead to problems such as kidney stones.

Cranberries do have a lot of health benefits, but only if they’re consumed correctly. Fresh, whole cranberries cannot be beaten in terms of nutrition and health benefits. So, if you’re looking for the best type of cranberry to add to your diet, fresh is definitely the way to go.

 

 

Tips for Using Spirulina for Natural Weight Loss

Tips for Using Spirulina for Weight Loss

One of the main reasons that people use spirulina in their daily routine is to drop unwanted weight. If you have never used a superfood, or specifically spirulina, then you may be at a loss of where to start.

If you have started using it, but you aren’t seeing any changes, then you may need some assistance.

Below are some tips for the beginner and for someone not seeing results with their spirulina for weight loss plans.

Spirulina as Part of the Plan

All too often, people tend to use spirulina as a quick fix or all in one superfood that will help them drop weight with nothing else being done. This is not true at all. Just like with anything else with weight loss, you need to have a full plan of diet and exercise.
Spirulina is part of that plan and helps with the diet portion. It gives you what you need in your body to keep it running like it should. You will still need to set up an exercise plan to help the spirulina along.

Consider Your Intake

Spirulina is loaded with various vitamins and minerals. This is a huge boon for most people who are looking to replace supplements and get the nutritional boost they need for weight loss.

The problem is that the very boon you are thrilled about could lead to a stumbling block in your weight loss plan if you don’t plan it out properly.

Some of these vitamins and minerals, like iron for example, can cause moderate to severe constipation when taken in large doses. This constipation and cause gas, inflammation, and build up in the intestines. These issues can result in what appears to be a weight gain on the scales. You will need to make sure that you are compensating for this by either reducing your intake of spirulina to a few times a week or incorporating prunes or other natural laxatives and superfoods into your diet.

Increase Water Intake

Hearing that you need to drink water is something that is always part of a weight loss plan. What you may not know is why it is part of the plan.

You need to make sure that you are keeping your body hydrated, but that is just part of it. The water also helps flush toxins from the body. This helps to keep bacteria and illness from settling in and helps flush the system of any waste that may be at a standstill.

Keep in mind, your body is similar to the pipes in your home. If they are not cleaned and flushed regularly, then build up can occur. This adds weight to the pipes. It also may trap things from moving through the pipes causing more weight and blockages. The same can be said of your body and how it works.

By keeping these tips in mind, you can develop a routine that works for you as well as  see some things that you may need to add to your routine.

There are other things to  keep in mind, but these tips will help you get started and see a boost in your weight loss
plans and goals.

Side Effects of Spirulina You Need to Know About

When you are researching the use of spirulina in your daily routine, you may first look at the benefits. After you have done that, you will likely look at the ways you can use it and what you should do for specific goals.

What many people skip over are the possible side effects. These may not be severe, but they are something to consider if you are new to superfoods since some may have side effects that are startling but normal.

Here are a few of the possible side effects of spirulina to consider.

Constipation

When you first start using spirulina, and before you work out a routine that works best for you, you may notice some constipation.This can be as mild as gas and some mild constipation and inflammation. It can also be severe, requiring you to take laxatives to help break up the constipation. This is an easily fixed side effect to spirulina and only requires adjusting your intake. Instead of using spirulina daily, you can cut it down to every other day or just a few times a week.

The dosage of spirulina is usually 3 grams. If you want to keep taking it daily, you can lower the amount to 1 gram instead.

Contamination

Unfortunately, since blue green algae in capsule or powder form is considered to be unregulated by the FDA, you may not be getting the ideal purity you are looking for. This means that some of the spirulina may be contaminated. This can cause illness or in severe cases liver disease or failure. To avoid this, make sure you are buying your spirulina from a reliable source such as a local health food store that has regular and reputable suppliers.

Increased Heart Rate

If you are not used to taking a large amount of minerals and vitamins a day, then you may experience mild levels of an increased heart rate. This is due to the burst of energy you may be getting as well as the boost of minerals and vitamins. This is normal and should not be taken as alarming. If it continues, lower your amount to 1 gram and then increase it as needed.

By keeping these side effects in mind, you will know what to expect if one of them does occur. This may mean a slight change in your routine, dosage, or use may need to change to counteract the side effect. If you are having severe side effects, stop the use of the superfood and seek professional assistance to determine if there is an allergy.

Benefits of Using Spirulina for Health

Spirulina is some blue green algae considered to be a superfood. This superfood is available in various forms including powder and liquid. You can use it daily as part of a juice routine, smoothie routine, or simply as a liquid addition in your water or coffee.

If you are new to superfoods, you may not know much about spirulina, including the benefits.

Here are a few of the health benefits that you can gain from routine use of the algae.

Protein Intake

If you are a vegetarian, vegan, or if you have a low intake of protein due to changing diets then keeping your protein levels high becomes vital. Spirulina contains over half of the protein you need in a day. This is in just one 3 grams serving size.

For most people, that means that in one juice or smoothie with the spirulina added as a supplement, you are not only getting vitamins and minerals you are also getting half of your protein. This makes it easier to get the rest of your protein through the day through your foods no matter what diet plan you are on or changing to.

Beta Carotene

For various reasons, one of the most difficult vitamin for people to get the right amount of during the day is beta carotene. Though carrots are the most common method of getting this into your diet you can get over 2,000 percent of the substance from spirulina. Keep in mind, the importance of beta carotene is the Vitamin A that it creates.This vitamin helps with our vision and is vital to keeping your eye health at good levels.

Iron Intake

Spirulina likely offers one of its biggest benefits to expectant mothers. When you are an expectant mother, one of the levels they check for in the blood work is iron. You must maintain your iron levels and spirulina is ideal. In fact, it has almost 4,000 percent iron to offer to your body. Expectant mothers are not the only ones that can benefit from this. Elderly, people overcoming long illnesses, and those who have low iron in their blood can also benefit from this greatly.

There are an increasing number of benefits to using this superfood. Keep in mind, you  can mix it with other superfoods to gain even further benefits to your health.

If you are going for a specific benefit, such as assistance with weight loss, you may want to alter your intake and routine to meet those goals.

How to Use Spirulina Successfully

Depending on the goals you may have for spirulina use in your daily routine, there are many methods you can use to reach those goals. Regardless of the little tweaks you will need to make to the use of spirulina, there are some basic how to steps to keep in mind.

Here below are some ways you can use spirulina and methods you may not have thought about that can help you build a routine and meet your goals.

Know What It Replaces

One of the first things you need to consider for spirulina to work successfully in your routine is what it can replace. This refers to the large amount of vitamins and minerals that spirulina naturally contains. For example, if you are on supplements for iron, Vitamin A, and Vitamin K then you may be happy to know that you might be able to drop the supplements and let the spirulina take their place.

Use the Best Method for You

Everyone is different and everybody type is different. This means that what may be an ideal method for you is not for someone else and vice versa. With that in mind, you need to try several types of spirulina and determine which is best for you and your routine. For some people, the liquid drops are ideal because you can take them with you and use them anywhere. However, for other people who have a routine juice or smoothie each day the powder may be best. If you are trying to reduce the number of supplements you are taking and you want to do a more all in one approach, then spirulina as part of a superfood powder may be ideal. Try each and use the method that is best for you.

Keep a Routine

Using superfoods is a lot like working out at the gym. You will not see many results, rapid results, or even regular results if you are not using it regularly. If you only go to the gym once a week, you won’t see a weight loss or muscle result. If you go daily or even three or four times a week, you will see the difference. The same is true with spirulina and other superfoods. You need to set a routine and keep to that routine to be successful. This may be every day, every other day, or even just a few times a week. They key is a set pattern and routine that you and your body can get used to.

By keeping these how-to methods in mind, you can make better choices for what may work best for you. You can also mix these methods depending on your schedule and what may be an easier how to method for you.

 

Easy Exercises to Try During the Holiday Season

 

exercises during the holiday seasonDuring the holidays, getting regular exercise is really important because it can help you burn calories and lose weight, even on days when you allow yourself an extra treat. Here are some exercises that are good to do during the holiday season.

Indoor Workouts

A really good option for exercising during the holidays is to choose some indoor workouts. There are a few reasons for this. First of all, it tends to be colder during the holiday season, so it isn’t always possible to go on a walk or a hike at a local park. Working out indoors, especially in your own home, also helps to encourage you to exercise even when you don’t feel motivated to get dressed and head to the gym.

Here are some options for exercising inside your home:

* Do a workout DVD
* Try some couch exercises, such as weight lifting or yoga to do in front of your TV
* Buy a treadmill, bicycle, or elliptical to use
* Have fun on an indoor trampoline

Easy Diet and Fitness Tips for Keeping Your Body,Mind And Spirit Healthy

 

Go Shopping?

shopping as an exerciseYes, you can also take advantage of certain activities you will already be doing during the holiday season that can also help you get in some more exercise. For example, when you are holiday shopping, skip the big box store and head to the mall instead. With such a big parking lot, you can park in the back and burn some calories just walking to the mall entrance. You can take the stairs instead of the escalator or elevator, and walk down the entire length of the mall on every floor to get a great workout.

 

 

 

 

holiday runs exerciseFind Holiday Runs

Many areas will have charity runs during the holiday season that will be good encouragement for you to exercise. When you sign up for one of these runs, you will probably want to get some conditioning in, so you will be walking and running for days or weeks leading up to the 5k or whatever type of run it is. Then on the day of the event, you get in a really good workout and help a local charity at the same time. This might be a Turkey Trot fun run during Thanksgiving, or a type of 5 or 10k around Christmastime or even as a New Years celebration. Check with your local city or town to see if any of these events will be occurring.

 

How to Get Fish Oil from Food Sources

fish oil for health and beautyHow to Get Fish Oil from Other Food Sources

Fish oil is a type of supplement that provides you with the necessary omega-3 fatty acids your body needs. When you look up healthy diets, you probably come across omega-3s and how important they are. These help to provide energy, reduce the risk of heart disease, and are good for overall health. If you would prefer getting your omega-3 fatty acids from food instead of a supplement, keep reading… Continue reading “How to Get Fish Oil from Food Sources”