We generally find cinnamon in baked desserts (particularly around the holiday season), but there might be some good reasons to work it into a healthy diet on a regular basis. Some claim that it can be a powerful weight loss tool. Here are some of its health benefits and why it might help with fat burning as well.

Cinnamon is high in a lot of nutrients such as  fiber, calcium, manganese, and iron. Some people use cinnamon to handle stomach issues such as ulcers and bloating. Others use it as an antibacterial agent to treat infections, and some believe it can even help stop the spread of cancer cells. Cinnamon may also be able to help stabilize the mood and prevent nervous feelings.

When it comes to weight loss, cinnamon might be able to help because it has properties that stabilize the blood sugar levels, as well as lower the levels of the bad kind of cholesterol in the body. When the blood sugars are stabilized, cinnamon can help to slow down the digestion of food which helps to keep you feeling fuller longer. Cinnamon can actually imitate the role of insulin in the body which can reduce the amount of blood sugar spikes. The fewer extreme spikes and dips the less fat the body is encouraged to store. When the blood sugar doesn’t dip too low you don’t get as crazy as cravings, so it might be a good defense against excess snacking.

Cinnamon might also be able to help the body break down carbohydrates more efficiently, as well as reduce the effect that sugar has on the body when you eat it, which makes the whole metabolizing thing more efficient. Some studies have even shown that adding cinnamon to a meal decreases its glycemic affect on the body, meaning that no matter what you’re eating the cinnamon will help to control the blood sugar better than if the food was eaten alone. Cinnamon also gives your metabolism a little boost in the same way that eating hot peppers does. It takes a little extra energy to metabolize it, so yo end up burning more calories while you do so.

We hear over and over that you can’t spot treat fat on the body, but we also know that certain foods can lead to more belly fat than others. Well cinnamon is one spice that might actually be able to cut down on belly fat. It’s worth a try.

To try out the health benefits from cinnamon you should aim to get about a teaspoon each day. Stirring some into coffee or using it as an oatmeal or toast topping is a great way to do it. Cinnamon of course doesn’t have any sugar in it, but when it is eaten with food it gives a flavor that sort of tastes sweet anyway. Using cinnamon as a flavor can actually help you cut down on sugar at breakfast time if you tend to crave a sweet boost.