Contraindications of cinnamon

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Cinnamon is an aromatic spice that comes from the bark of the branches of the Cinnamomic velum tree. It is a very appreciated plant on a gastronomic level, especially in pastries, and on a medicinal level. This food has antibacterial and antioxidant properties that make it an ally for good health, but, in some cases, it can be contraindicated or cause harmful side effects if taken in excess. You can count on this delicious spice to enjoy endless delicious desserts and to improve some aspects of your health, but as a precaution, it is advisable to know the possible contraindications of cinnamon, and in this article, we detail them so that you take them into account.
Contraindications of cinnamon

Liver damage

The relationship between cinnamon intake and possible liver damage is associated with the presence of coumarin, which is an organic compound, a phytochemical, found in numerous plant species and which, it is believed, could require extra work from the liver, altering its proper functioning.

It should be noted that there are different types of cinnamon, and not all contain the same amount of this element. Cassia cinnamon, the most common, has the highest content compared to Ceylon cinnamon, which has a noticeably lower content.

In any case, people who may have liver disease or liver damage to some degree (hepatitis, cirrhosis, fatty liver, etc.) should consult with a specialist about the suitability of the intake of this spice or the supplements made with it, because it could be contraindicated. The coumarin it contains could have harmful effects on the liver and, in addition, could interact negatively with certain drugs used in the treatment of liver diseases.

Risk of hypoglycemia

Although there are already studies that suggest that cinnamon lowers blood sugar (glucose), the truth is that the effects that cinnamon can produce in people with diabetes continue to be studied, as indicated by experts from the American Mayo Clinic [1], who suggest that it is possible that the spice helps the body manage the insulin generated by the pancreas with greater efficiency.

Even so, in the face of different types of diabetes, cinnamon would be contraindicated, especially in patients who are being treated with insulin or with specific blood sugar control drugs. The reason is that cinnamon is considered to have antiglycemic effects, that is, it helps lower glucose levels. If you are already taking a drug to achieve this same end, cinnamon could increase its effects, even triggering a dangerous episode of hypoglycemia. Again, to avoid risks, consultation with a specialist doctor is essential.

Cinnamon allergy

As with any other food, an allergy or intolerance to certain compounds of cinnamon, not only to coumarin, but also to cinnamaldehyde, the substance responsible for its characteristic aroma and flavor, means that people who may have it should avoid its intake, since it could cause adverse reactions of various kinds, especially inflammation in the tongue and gums.

For the same reason, and as a precaution, cinnamon is usually discouraged to pregnant or lactating women, given the possibility that the baby could also have some type of allergy or intolerance.

Possible Side Effects of Cinnamon

We must insist that cinnamon is a spice full of good properties, capable of providing the body with remarkable amounts of essential vitamins and minerals. As we have indicated, research continues on possible cases in which it could be contraindicated. Even so, experts agree that anyone should take it in moderate amounts, no more than 0.1mg per kilo of body weight per day, since, in excessively high proportions it could have adverse side effects such as:

  • Itching and discomfort in the mouth and throat: in high quantities, cinnamaldehyde is irritating and can cause a burning sensation in the mucous membranes and even the appearance of small sores or mouth ulcers.
  • Breathing difficulties: Although it is a rare side effect, cinnamon powder can trigger nasal itching or persistent coughing by accidental inhalation, either by nose or mouth.
  • Dizziness and nausea: Coumarin can alter blood glucose levels, causing it to drop more than normal. Dizziness and sudden fatigue are warning symptoms of possible hypoglycemia. In addition, in excess, cinnamon would also trigger stomach discomfort, such as vomiting or diarrhea.
  • Low blood pressure: in people who usually have low blood pressure and, above all, if a treatment is followed to control tension, cinnamon could also have side effects in the form of vertigo and sudden dizziness.
  • Possible uterine contractions in pregnant women: although there is no scientific endorsement to confirm this, it is believed that taking cinnamon in large quantities (especially ingested as an infusion) could trigger uterine dilation and accelerate labor.

Now that you know the contraindications of cinnamon and its possible side effects if taken in excess, we encourage you to discover the Benefits of cinnamon tea and what cinnamon water is for.

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