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Gifted Gourmet

Cinnamon and diabetes, cholesterol levels

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The article from New Scientist.com

To see if it would work in people, Alam Khan, who was a postdoctoral fellow in Anderson's lab, organised a study in Pakistan. Volunteers with Type 2 diabetes were given one, three or six grams of cinnamon powder a day, in capsules after meals.

All responded within weeks, with blood sugar levels that were on average 20 per cent lower than a control group. Some even achieved normal blood sugar levels. Tellingly, blood sugar started creeping up again after the diabetics stopped taking cinnamon.

The cinnamon has additional benefits. In the volunteers, it lowered blood levels of fats and "bad" cholesterol, which are also partly controlled by insulin. And in test tube experiments it neutralised free radicals, damaging chemicals which are elevated in diabetics.

Perhaps we have overlooked, but are now seeing more clearly, how different foods can be invaluable in providing health benefits .. Dr. Andrew Weill has been a big proponent of this for a long time.

Agree? Much to do about nothing? Baking an apple pie right now? :rolleyes:


Melissa Goodman aka "Gifted Gourmet"

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yes. anythign from 2 tsps to a 1 tablespoon of ground cinnamon throught the day does wonders for blood sugar and insulin levels...

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I have been adding cinnamon to my daily food intake since I was diagnosed with type II diabetes a year ago. My internist recommended several books and one book went into detail on the herbs, spices and vitamins that help to lower and stabilize blood sugar and also affect the way the cells react to insulin that is produced by the body.

I am at my office today and as part of my lunch I will have an apple, chopped up and sprinkled with Splenda mixed with cinnamon (in a shaker I keep in my desk), nuked in the microwave for 3-4 minutes then topped with a generous dollop of cottage cheese.

With a combination of diet and exercise my blood sugar is normal without medication.

I took Avandia for several months, until my daily tests showed normal.

Rather than take the capsules, I have added cinnamon to many of my foods, not necessarily sweet ones. I have found that many savory dishes are actually enhanced, not overwhelmed by the cinnamon.

I measured out various amounts on a gram scale to get an idea of the volume required as a daily "dose" .........


"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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By the way, thanks for starting this topic. This is an important one. Far too often people who are affected by things such as this are hesitant to ask for advice, they do not want to appear to be a complainer, or sound "whiney".

My attitude is always "ASK", there may be someone who can make your life easier.


"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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Did not know this - but since I started strength training and running, I have been eating a lot of cottage cheese - Nancy's brand is excellent, by the way - and often add a good dose of cinnamon. Well, this will add to the confusion, but hopefully bring down the LDL, when next tested.

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Thanks SO much for posting the article!! :smile: Zipped it right off to my little brother, who's been a Juvenile Diabetic since he was 7 (He's 34 now, and it's already taken one eye, miserable, bastard disease that it is. :angry: ). He's pretty on top of the happenin's as far as natural supplements go, but I always like to think maybe I'll send along the one thing he hasn't seen, and that it might be a help. Sure appreciate it.

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Anderson's team were awarded patents related to MHCP in 2002.

I presume that means we're probably not too far from seeing the active ingredient marketed in pill form.

"I don't recommend eating more cinnamon buns, or even more apple pie - there's too much fat and sugar," says Anderson.

I guess that means that a dish of cinnamon ice cream every day won't lower your cholesterol.


"I think it's a matter of principle that one should always try to avoid eating one's friends."--Doctor Dolittle

blog: The Institute for Impure Science

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I presume that means we're probably not too far from seeing the active ingredient marketed in pill form.

Cinnamon capsules!

See what you think .. until then, simply add it to your daily foods straight from the jar ... :biggrin:


Melissa Goodman aka "Gifted Gourmet"

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I wonder if it matters which "cinnamon" you ingest -- cassia, or true "Ceylon" cinnamon??


Oh, J[esus]. You may be omnipotent, but you are SO naive!

- From the South Park Mexican Starring Frog from South Sri Lanka episode

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hmm..good question. i guess to be precise one would have to go back and look at the research for the latin name of the herb they used, and decide from there.

but to be strictly empirical, the people i know who use it and are getting results from it, are using plain old grocery store cinnamon, which is cassia.

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Cinnamon capsules!

Cool. $150 a pound for cinnamon. Now there's a good racket.


"I think it's a matter of principle that one should always try to avoid eating one's friends."--Doctor Dolittle

blog: The Institute for Impure Science

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Cinnamon capsules!

Cool. $150 a pound for cinnamon. Now there's a good racket.

Well, you did ask .... :unsure:

Just buy cinnamon in your local grocery and enjoy!!


Melissa Goodman aka "Gifted Gourmet"

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What I actually meant was that these doctors would get some pharmaceutical company to produce a refined, synthetic version of MHCP that could be sold like a drug. But then, I would have said people wouldn't pay absurdly inflated prices just to get cinnamon, and apparently I would have been wrong about that.


"I think it's a matter of principle that one should always try to avoid eating one's friends."--Doctor Dolittle

blog: The Institute for Impure Science

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The nice thing about cinammon compared to conventional oral medications for type II diabetes is that it tastes good. Other than that, there really is no advantage to taking it over regular medication. Just because something is "natural" doesn't mean it is necessarily better. In this case I see very little potential harm and possibly some benefit to adding more cinammon to my diet, although I think it unlikely to greatly affect my need for oral antihyperglycemics.


John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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About the only way I can tolerate the flavor of cinnamon is in a few sweets--cinnamon rolls, pumpkin pie, snickerdoodles--none of which does much for the diabetic diet. I'd gladly pay for the capsule form so I don't have to taste it. $6 for 30 capsules is nothing compared to the price of other herbals, much less prescription drugs. Avandia alone is about $150 for a 30 day supply.

The bigger problem for me is taking all those pills. Calcium, glucosomate, chromium, grape seed oil, plus eight prescriptions already add up to about 30 pills a day (in addition to 3 shots of insulin). When you have diabetes, it is not unusual to be treated for cholesterol and high blood pressure and thyroid problems, not to mention an allergy pill for itching and Prozac cause you're depressed over the whole thing! You are also more susceptible to wonderful conditions like gout and shingles, as well as the threat of losing eyes and limbs. I don't know if arthritis usually accompanies diabetes, but I have that, too.

Not a picnic.


Ruth Dondanville aka "ruthcooks"

“Are you making a statement, or are you making dinner?” Mario Batali

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The bigger problem for me is taking all those pills.

Care to brew up some 'pilliabaisse'? :hmmm:

Know whereof I speak, and, yes, I have often considered doing this myself, Ruth .... :wink:


Edited by Gifted Gourmet (log)

Melissa Goodman aka "Gifted Gourmet"

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About the only way I can tolerate the flavor of cinnamon is in a few sweets--cinnamon rolls, pumpkin pie, snickerdoodles--none of which does much for the diabetic diet. I'd gladly pay for the capsule form so I don't have to taste it. $6 for 30 capsules is nothing compared to the price of other herbals, much less prescription drugs. Avandia alone is about $150 for a 30 day supply.

I am fortunate that my health plan covers diabetes medications at no co-pay. I do not believe that would be the case with the more holistic approach of cinammon or "natural" remedies, especially without a proven track record. I know what metformin does for my blood sugar and that along with pravachol and accupril have so far managed to control those issues and keep me in a low risk range, without having to substantially alter my diet. I actually have to make more concessions for kidney stones. :laugh: If a little cinammon helps, so much the better.

The recommendations for blood pressure and cholesterol ranges for diabetics is that they remain not just within normal limits, but on the low side of "normal", so if one is diabetic and not currently within that low-normal range, one should consider adding these medications if not already on them.


John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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I wonder if it matters which "cinnamon" you ingest -- cassia, or true "Ceylon" cinnamon??

The original research paper reported using Cinnamomum cassia.

Here are links to the original article, published by Diabetes Care Journal, on which the New Scientist report was based:

HTML version

PDF version


Bob Libkind aka "rlibkind"

Robert's Market Report

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About six months ago at the store I work at (Penzeys in Columbus, Ohio), we had a large amont of elderly people come in saying that they were recommened to add cinnamon to their daily diet. At first I kind of laughed it off, but the number of people coming in specifically for this has increased so much lately that I was beginning to wonder if it had any merit to it. Thanks for posting this article, it helps a lot. I'm going to print it off and give it to my manager. To bad that doesn't make the cinnamon bread I made this morning healthfood ;).

Shannon


my new blog: http://uninvitedleftovers.blogspot.com

"...but I'm good at being uncomfortable, so I can't stop changing all the time...be kind to me, or treat me mean...I'll make the most of it I'm an extraordinary machine."

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See what you think .. until then, simply add it to your daily foods straight from the jar ... :biggrin:

Not a fan of the stuff. I'd have to swallow the pill. :cool: The thought of sprinkling it on my food makes my tummy churn. I can't stand when people load their coffee makers with it and I have to smell the sickly sweet cinnamoney....cinnaminnie...cina....oh fugeddaboudit... :hmmm: coffee grounds, the flavored coffee in the pot, the smelly coffee in all the cups and the coffee breath in the room with that sweet, oookie stank. :blink: Did I mention I hate cinnamon flavored coffee? :wacko:

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AWESOME! Now I have a medical reason to buy those Cinnabons when I head out to the mall!

Ever the pragmatist! :laugh:

Re Cinnabon: best picture I ever saw was of some Osama-looking men sitting at a Cinnabon, wearing turbans made out of huge Cinnabons ... :rolleyes:


Melissa Goodman aka "Gifted Gourmet"

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When I first emigrated to NYC, cinnamon was this oppressive omnipresence... of course I ended up not noticing it but for a while it was just part of the smell of New York.

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i've always had a tought time wrapping my head around cinnamon as "sweet" as opposed to "savory".

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