One of the tastiest ways to nix your sugar cravings is with a spice you probably have in your cupboard right now: Cinnamon.
You may know this culinary spice for the warm, aromatic flavor it gives baked goods.
Cinnamon, in my opinion, is one undervalued space.
Indeed, cinnamon has been treasured for more than 3,000 years for its medicinal properties.
For instance, cinnamon has been used to treat muscle spasms, vomiting, diarrhea, infections, the common cold, loss of appetite, erectile dysfunction and many other conditions. Pretty impressive for an ingredient derived from the bark of a small evergreen tree.
For those of you who crave sugary foods, however, it’s cinnamon’s ability to control blood sugar levels that make it really exceptional. According to several recent studies—including those published in Diabetes Journal, Nutrition Journal and Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics—consuming up to a half-teaspoon of cinnamon per day helps control blood sugar levels by preventing insulin spikes after you eat—not just after a sugar-rich meal, but after any meal.
Why is this a good thing?
When you control your blood sugar with cinnamon, you’re less likely to crave sweet foods later on:
- Cinnamon contains cinnamaldehyde, cinnamyl acetate, and cinnamyl alcohol, chemicals which together act to neutralize blood sugar spikes after you eat food.
- Cinnamon also boosts the body’s ability to destroy the sugar-loving bad bacteria in your stomach—the very bacteria that cause you to crave sugar.
- Cinnamon improves digestion, meaning it can help your body absorb more of the nutrients from the food you eat, wiping out your body’s need for a quick source of energy such as sugar.
So how can you use cinnamon to spice up your diet?
- Sprinkle cinnamon into your morning super sake.
- Add cinnamon to a baked sweet potato. (Yummy!)
- Suck on cinnamon sticks in the late afternoon. (That’s when clients tell me their Crazy Cravings often hit.)
- Use cinnamon sticks as drink stirrers for both your cool beverages or hot drinks. You can even chew on cinnamon sticks to freshen your breath.
- Add a teaspoon of cinnamon and a pinch of ginger to green tea, preferably decaf, at any time of day or night to get even more anti-sugar craving effects.
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