There's cinnamon, and then there's cin . . . oh-man!!! The first is the kind you sprinkle on toast or pull out of the cupboard to mix into a baking recipe, the kind that's been on that shelf for many months, likely in a tin can with a flip-top lid that screams, "I was bought at least ten years ago!" Now, the latter kind? That latter kind is this kind: organic and potent and fresh, fragrant and functional. Frontier Co-op is offering Organic Ceylon Cinnamon for its mild yet unmistakably fragrant properties, all the better to mellow your blood sugar and enhance recipes both savory and sweet. Perfecto.
Cinnamon has gotten some good press in the last several years. It's almost widely known these days that sprinkling a bit on your sweetened coffee can help with blood sugar, or that adding a generous dose to a fruit smoothie will assist in nutrient content (and also that blood sugar part, again). All of this is true, but it is vitally important to consume good, organic, sustainable cinnamon to get the best nutrients and amazing flavor.
Let's start with the kinds of cinnamon out there in the world, shall we? Cinnamon - that most popular of spices - comes from the bark of an evergreen tree. Cinnamon's sweet, spicy and warm fragrance adds pungent sweetness to your favorite baked recipes. You can also use it to add a depth of flavor to savory dishes as well.
The varieties include the kind we have grown up with, that kind that tends to sit on the shelf for many years just hanging out until needed for a cake or cookie recipe. That kind is mild and inoffensive across the culinary spectrum, and it is most often called Cassia or Korintje. In addition to the mild flavor, the cost is very affordable and this makes it the most popular choice for mass production. Next, there's the kind you'll find popping up in fancy stores: Vietnamese, also known as Saigon cinnamon. It's strong, potent, and sometimes a bit too powerful for recipes or just adding to foods. It's delicious but it has its place. Finally, we come to Ceylon, often called the true cinnamon: "Cinnamon verum, or ceylon, is considered the “true cinnamon” of the world. It is lighter in color and has a milder, sweeter flavor than common cinnamon." Ceylon is rarer and more expensive than any of the other varieties, making it a treat for the afficinado.
Now, this jar. What's so special about it? First, the flavor. The freshness and vibrance are unlike any cinnamon you've used before. Then, there's the credentials. Organic? Yep. Non-GMO? Check. Oh, and Fair Trade Certified? That's a definite yes. How many spices have you purchased lately that are Fair Trade? Yeah, me too - they are not easy to find. I appreciate Frontier for bringing these high standards to their lineup, and making them within reach of most consumers.
I've already used the cinnamon to brighten up a smoothie, add depth to my morning cup(s) of coffee, and rounded out a stew with its barely sweet properties. You'll find endless uses, too.
First, cinnamon's unique healing abilities come from three basic types of components in the essential oils found in its bark. These oils contain active components called cinnamaldehyde, cinnamyl acetate, and cinnamyl alcohol, plus a wide range of other volatile substances.
Cinnamaldehyde (also called cinnamic aldehyde) has been well-researched for its effects on blood platelets. Platelets are constituents of blood that are meant to clump together under emergency circumstances (like physical injury) as a way to stop bleeding, but under normal circumstances, they can make blood flow inadequate if they clump together too much. The cinnaldehyde in cinnamon helps prevent unwanted clumping of blood platelets. (The way it accomplishes this health-protective act is by inhibiting the release of an inflammatory fatty acid called arachidonic acid from platelet membranes and reducing the formation of an inflammatory messaging molecule called thromboxane A2.) Cinnamon's ability to lower the release of arachidonic acid from cell membranes also puts it in the category of an "anti-inflammatory" food that can be helpful in lessening inflammation.
Cinnamon's essential oils also qualify it as an "anti-microbial" food, and cinnamon has been studied for its ability to help stop the growth of bacteria as well as fungi, including the commonly problematic yeast Candida. In laboratory tests, growth of yeasts that were resistant to the commonly used anti-fungal medication fluconazole was often (though not always) stopped by cinnamon extracts.
Cinnamon is so powerful an antioxidant that, when compared to six other antioxidant spices (anise, ginger, licorice, mint, nutmeg and vanilla) and the chemical food preservatives (BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole), BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene), and propyl gallate), cinnamon prevented oxidation more effectively than all the other spices (except mint) and the chemical antioxidants.
Seasoning a high carb food with cinnamon can help lessen its impact on your blood sugar levels. Cinnamon slows the rate at which the stomach empties after meals, reducing the rise in blood sugar after eating. Cinnamon may also significantly help people with type 2 diabetes improve their ability to respond to insulin, thus normalizing their blood sugar levels.
Frontier Co-op specializes in natural and organic products. Our products are found in natural products stores and specialty shops throughout the United States and Canada, as well as right here on our website. By offering easy access to high-quality, competitively priced choices that are both environmentally friendly and socially responsible, Frontier seeks to lead the way in bringing nature -- and peace of mind -- to our customers.
As a leading supplier of organic herbs and spices, we hold a leadership position, not only in the marketplace, but also in the effort to convert food producers to sustainable farming and production practices. Our work is driven by the belief that fostering environmental responsibility is crucial to our world's future.
We believe that every person wishes to leave a positive mark on the world. Our goal is to leave future generations with a healthier world than the one we live in today.
Just plain it makes sense. No pesticides, no GMOs, no hormones or weird stuff.
Because people deserve a fair price for the food they grow, period.
Cinnamon is the world's most popular baking spice. You'll recognize its familiar taste and aroma in cakes and breads. It's common in savory dishes, too--soups, chutneys, catsup, pickles, squash, vinegars and meat glazes--and hot drinks like cider, coffee, tea and cocoa.
Cinnamon complements fruits like apricots, cherries, apples, blueberries and oranges. Vegetables, too--especially carrots, spinach and onions--are enhanced by cinnamon's pungent sweetness.
Fair trade, organic ceylon cinnamon