Cinnamon is a sweet spice that most of us enjoy and the fact that it may help fight obesity just makes it even better.
According to a new study published in the journal Metabolism, an essential oil found in cinnamon attacks fat cells and could be used to fight obesity.
Researchers from the University of Michigan found that the oil cinnamaldehyde boosts metabolic health by causing fat cells to start burning energy — a process called thermogenesis.
“Cinnamon has been part of our diets for thousands of years, and people generally enjoy it,” said Jun Wu, a research assistant professor at UM’s Life Sciences Institute. “So if it can help protect against obesity, too, it may offer an approach to metabolic health that is easier for patients to adhere to.”
I believe that too much of anything is not good for you especially when we are talking about sugar and spices. I do agree that if a spice like cinnamon has the potential to help you lose weight, it will not hurt to add it to your diet in moderation if you really enjoy it.
Cinnamaldehyde is what gives cinnamon its flavor.
The research reflects off cinnamaldehyde studies in mice, where the oil fought against obesity.
The new study, published in the December issue of the journal Metabolism, tested whether the same effect would happen in humans.
Using fat cells from volunteers, researchers treated the cells — called adipocytes — with cinnamaldehyde. The results found an “increased expression” of genes and enzymes that boost metabolism while increasing proteins beneficial to thermogenesis.
Wu suggests cinnamaldehyde could be used to fight obesity by way of activating thermogenesis. But she held off on endorsing cinnamon as a weight-loss treatment until further study is done.
More research is needed to discover cinnamaldehyde’s benefits and side effects.
Source: Jiang, Juan et al “Cinnamaldehyde induces fat cell-autonomous thermogenesis and metabolic reprogramming” Metabolism – Clinical and Experimental, Volume 77, 58 – 64
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