People suffering with type 2 diabetes are bound to have an easier time controlling their condition should they take up the habit of consuming cinnamon supplements, researchers in California say.
What's more, it appears that this spice can also help keep one's heart healthy by lowering total cholesterol, so-called bad cholesterol and triglyceride levels, and boosting the body's production of good cholesterol.
The scientists base their claims on data collected while analyzing the outcome of 10 clinical trials that tested how type 2 diabetes sufferers respond to a regular intake of cinnamon.
By the looks of it, said spice made it significantly easier for them to control their fasting plasma glucose levels, Live Science tells us.
The researchers suspect cinnamon has this effect on diabetics due to the fact that it contains a chemical compound, i.e. cinnamaldehyde, that stimulates the production of insulin.
The same compound is believed to make insulin more effective, the same source reports.
“When we combined the results of all the trials, we found that in patients with type 2 diabetes, there was a benefit on blood glucose and cholesterol levels,” researcher Olivia Phung says.
“By enhancing insulin activity, it's assumed there'd be better control of blood glucose,” the specialist adds.
What's interesting is that, in some cases, cinnamon managed to lower fasting plasma glucose levels more than newly developed drug meant to tackle this issue did.
Thus, it brought them down by roughly 25 milligrams/deciliter. New drugs such as sitagliptin, on the other hand, only lowered said levels by about 16 to 21 milligrams/deciliter.
Despite these very encouraging findings, the researchers urge that type 2 diabetes patients don't just rush to the nearest store, buy themselves a bucket of cinnamon supplements and gulp them down.
On the contrary, they should consult their doctors and try not to look at this spice as if it were some miracle cure for their problems.
“It's not going to replace your diabetes medications, so if you're thinking about taking cinnamon [for diabetes control], definitely talk to your doctor or a pharmacist about it,” Olivia Phung stresses.