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 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.