10 Cinnamon Oil Benefits You Will Be Surprised To Read
Apart from the culinary uses of cinnamon, its benefits as natural medicine are simply surprising. From treating fever to relieving depression, cinnamon oil benefits are numerous.
Did you know that cinnamon is one of the world’s first ever spices to be traded? Yes, that’s true. Cinnamon was so valuable in ancient times that it was considered equivalent to ivory & gold. (1)
Ancient Egyptians used cinnamon as a part of their embalming rituals. The physicians from the middle eras used it to help ease cold, cough, sore throat, and hoarseness.
Let’s understand cinnamon essential oil in detail.
What is Cinnamon Oil?
Cinnamon essential oil is extracted from the leaves and twigs of Cinnamomum zeylanicum through the process of steam distillation. It belongs to the Lauraceae family, which is a family of flowering plants comprising about 2800 species.
Cinnamon is an evergreen tree, which can grow up to 30 feet high, but it is generally cultivated as a bush. It has thick barks, greenish to orange shoot systems, white flowers, and fruit that turn bluish when they ripe. (2, 3)
Cinnamon is one of the world’s oldest and valuable spices. It has been a part of the traditional medicinal systems in various parts of the world.
Sri Lanka, India, Comoro Island, Seychelles, and Madagascar are the principal producers of cinnamon leaf essential oil.
The essential oil obtained from cinnamon bark, stems, and roots have completely different properties when compared to the leaf oil. It is not generally recommended for home use.
Scientific Name of Cinnamon Oil
The botanical name of cinnamon is Cinnamomum zeylanicum / Cinnamomum vervun.
History of Cinnamon Oil
The name Cinnamon comes from the Arabic & Hebraic word “qinnmon,” meaning spice plant with fragrance.
Cinnamon has been cultivated and admired from ancient times. It has been a part of ancient Egyptian & Indian civilizations. It is a staple medicine in the traditional medicinal systems of China & India.
The exact origin of Cinnamon is not clearly known. It is believed that Cinnamon grew in Indian and Arabian countries.
Throughout history, cinnamon was a part of every household. It has diverse uses in culinary as well as medical applications. In ancient times, cinnamon plants symbolized for good fortune and wealth. It was widely grown as well as traded.
During the Middle Ages, Europeans considered Cinnamon as a symbol of status. The spice was highly expensive and was affordable only to the rich during this period. Portuguese, the Dutch and the English fought with Sri Lanka so that they could grow the crop in Sri Lanka.
Color, Consistency, and Smell of Cinnamon Oil
- The color of Cinnamon oil is golden yellow to dark brown.
- The consistency of Cinnamon oil is medium to thin.
- The smell of Cinnamon oil is spicy, earthy, and warm.
Properties of Cinnamon Essential Oil
The therapeutic properties of the cinnamon essential oil include:
- Analgesic – Reduces pain sensation
- Anthelmintic – Gets rid of intestinal parasites
- Antibacterial – Prevents bacterial growth
- Anticatarrhal – Effective against catarrh
- Anticoagulant – Reduces blood clotting
- Antidepressant – Alleviates depression
- Antifungal – Prevents fungal growth
- Anti-infectious – Prevents infections
- Anti-inflammatory – Lessens inflammation
- Antimicrobial – Prevents the growth of microorganisms
- Antioxidant – Inhibits oxidation process
- Antiputrescent – Acts against putrefaction
- Antirheumatic – Relieves symptoms of rheumatic conditions
- Antisclerotic – Prevents hardening of cells & tissues
- Antiseptic – Destroys microbes
- Antispasmodic – Prevents/relieves spasms, contractions, or convulsions
- Antitussive – Treats coughs
- Antiviral – Helps prevent the growth of the virus
- Aphrodisiac – Increases sexual desire
- Astringent – Contracts / tightens the tissues
- Balsamic – Soothes sore throats, coughs, etc.
- Calmative – Effective sedative & calming agent
- Carminative – Relieves flatulence, eases abdominal pain & bloating
- Cicatrizing – Heals wounds by promoting the formation of scar tissues
- Circulatory – Promotes proper blood flow
- Decongestant – Reduces congestion like mucus
- Depurative – Effective cleanser & detoxifier
- Diaphoretic – Promotes perspiration
- Digestive – Digests your food
- Disinfectant – Helps germs from spreading
- Diuretic – Promotes the removal of excess water from the body
- Emmenagogue – Regularizes or induces menstruation
- Emollient – Soothes and softens the skin
- Expectorant – Eliminates excess mucus from the body
- Febrifuge – An antifebrile (anti-fever) agent
- Immunostimulant – Stimulates the function of the immune system
- Laxative – Helps in eliminating bowel
- Mucolytic – Breaks down mucus
- Regenerative – Tends to regenerate
- Restorative – Strengthens & revives the body
- Spasmolytic – Eases muscle spasms
- Stimulant – Increases the overall function of the body
- Stomachic – Great digestive aid
- Thermogenic – Stimulates the production of heat
- Tonic – Restores the bodily functions
- Vermifuge – Expels intestinal worms
- Vulnerary – Heals wounds & sores when applied topically
Chemical Compounds in Cinnamon Oil
The chemical compounds found in the cinnamon leaf oil include:
Eugenol (68.6–87.0%), Eugenyl acetate (1.0–8.1%), Linalool (2.0–5.0%), (E)-Cinnamyl acetate (0.8–4.6%), Benzyl Benzoate (4.1%), b-Caryophyllene (1.9–3.7%), (E)-Cinnamaldehyde (0.6–1.1%), Safrole (0–1.0%), and Cinnamyl alcohol (0–0.6%) (4, 5).
Health Benefits of Cinnamon Oil
- Prevents infections
- Soothes ulcer & gastric pain
- Increases blood circulation
- Treats cold, flu, and fever
- Eases menstrual discomfort
- Aids weight loss
- Alleviates arthritic symptoms
- Reduces bad cholesterol
- Makes you fresh and active
- Repels insects
1. Prevents infections
Cinnamon as a spice is well-admired for preventing and treating infections. The compound cinnamaldehyde in it is attributed to the antifungal, antibacterial, antimicrobial, and anti-infectious properties. You can use cinnamon essential oil against Candida albicans or any other fungal infection. (6).
We would recommend using cinnamon oil along with sesame oil for treating oral candidiasis. In addition, the oil acts as an antiseptic, preventing further infection.
Oral intake of any essential oil is not recommended unless prescribed by a doctor or a professional aromatherapist. The oil also helps you to prevent bacterial and viral infections. It is one of the most important essential oils in your travel kit.
2. Soothes ulcer & gastric pain
Eugenol is the compound responsible for this amazing benefit of Cinnamon essential oil. Gastric health is crucial for your overall health. However, an unhealthy lifestyle and a bacterium called H. pylori cause gastric ulcers.
Generally, ulcers cause discomfort and severe pain. The condition is hard to manage. It occurs when your gut’s microflora increases or decreases. First thing you have to do is watch your diet and the way you eat.
Cinnamon oil acts as a support in treating ulcers. We recommend you to apply cinnamon oil (but diluted with a carrier oil) on your abdomen rather taking orally. You can take cinnamon tea once in a day to soothe the pain from within. (7, 8)
3. Increases blood circulation
Your body is made of millions of cells. Proper circulation of energy, nutrients, and oxygen to each cell is crucial to maintain proper well-being. This is facilitated by the blood, which takes all the nutrients to each cell.
Improper blood circulation usually increases as you age or it could be due to unhealthy and sedentary lifestyle.
Massaging your whole body using diluted cinnamon oil improves blood flow. Thus, each cell gets its share of oxygen, minerals, and nutrients. Regular massage would help you to heal from within. Also, the oil being an antioxidant, scavenges free radicals and makes you look young and healthy. (9)
4. Treats cold, flu, and fever
As seen earlier, cinnamon is known to fight infections. It helps you to treat cold, flu, and fever. The oil gives you a warming effect and makes you feel warm during such conditions.
If you feel congested during any of these conditions, all you have to do is inhale the aroma of cinnamon oil. The sweet and spicy aroma would make you comfortable and helps you to breathe normally.
5. Eases menstrual discomfort
Menstrual discomfort is always embarrassing for women. 8 out of 10 women suffer from pain and discomfort during menstruation. There are various reasons for this condition, and it has to be addressed with the utmost care.
Menstrual cramps, heavy menstrual flow, pain, and irritation are usually embarrassing. You can use cinnamon oil to relieve this discomfort and stabilize your menstrual flow. Thanks to its analgesic properties. (12)
Dilute 2 drops of Cinnamon oil, 2 drops of Lemon oil in 4 tablespoons of Olive oil. Massage your lower back, move upwards, and then move to your abdomen. Massage your abdomen in small circular motions in clockwise direction. This relieves discomfort.
6. Aids weight loss
Sedentary lifestyle, unhealthy food habits, junk foods, stress, anxiety, and tension are the most common reasons for obesity.
If you are looking at some nature-based substance to aid your weight loss journey, then Cinnamon oil is one of them.
Remember, Cinnamon oil only acts as an aid. All you have to do is massage your body using diluted cinnamon oil after your workout. This would relax your body, prevent muscle injuries and facilitate weight loss.
Over time, the oil would increase your metabolism and prevent you from adding more weight. Cinnamaldehyde is the major compound attributed to this benefit of cinnamon essential oil. (13)
7. Alleviates arthritic symptoms
Arthritis is an inflammatory disorder that occurs in the joints and is extremely painful. Many people have arthritis today. The pain and discomfort increase with age.
Essential oils help in reducing inflammation and pain. Cinnamon essential oil is an excellent anti-inflammatory agent. It reduces inflammation, relieves pain, and helps you to walk without any discomfort.
You can find significant changes in your health. However, you should be cautious about your weight, diet, and exercise routine.
8. Reduces bad cholesterol
Your body gets energy from the fat that is stored inside. However, there is something called bad cholesterol that causes harm. These cholesterols deposits in your cells and blood vessels, making it hard for your body to function properly.
Massaging your body using essential oils is one of the most effective methods to reduce bad cholesterol levels in your body. This process would dissolve the cholesterol and helps you to reduce weight. (14)
9. Makes you fresh and active
Cinnamon essential oil is an excellent detoxifier. Also, the aroma of the oil would make you feel fresh and active. Add 2 – 3 drops of cinnamon oil in a bathtub and soak yourself in the water.
Relax and mindfully massage your body with gentle pressure. This would facilitate lymphatic drainage, removal of toxins through your skin pores. The oil gives you a calming effect. It boosts your immune system, increases circulation, flow of energy, oxygen, and other nutrients. You will feel refreshed after the bath.
10. Repels insects
If you are looking for some natural based repellent for insects, then cinnamon essential oil serves the best purpose.
Insects hate the aroma of cinnamon essential oil. You can diffuse the oil using a diffuser to repel mosquitoes. This is mainly due to the compound Cinnamyl acetate. Being a fragrance agent, it exhibits insect repellent properties.
In addition to this benefit, cinnamon oil serves as a deodorizer in your home. (15)
If you suspect any mosquito eggs in your garden area, try spraying a solution of cinnamon oil mixed with water. Dilute 5 to 6 drops of cinnamon oil in 100 ml of water and spray it on the required place. It would solve the problem within hours.
However, make sure you do not have pets in the room while diffusing the oil.
What Blends with Cinnamon Oil?
Cinnamon oil blends the best with:
- Bay laurel oil
- Benzoin oil
- Bergamot oil
- Cardamom oil
- Carnation oil
- Carrot seed oil
- Clove Bud oil
- Coriander seed oil
- Eucalyptus lemon oil
- Eucalyptus Radiata oil
- Frankincense oil
- Geranium oil
- Ginger oil
- Grapefruit oil
- Lavandin oil
- Lavender oil
- Lavender (spike) oil
- Lemon oil
- Lemongrass oil
- Mandarin oil
- May Chang oil
- Myrtle oil
- Nutmeg oil
- Orange (sweet) oil
- Oregano oil
- Palmarosa oil
- Petitgrain oil
- Pimento berry oil
- Rose oil
- Tangerine oil
- Tarragon oil
- Ylang ylang oil
- Yuzu oil
How To Use Cinnamon Oil?
- Topical Application: Like any other essential oil, even cinnamon oil is potent in its concentrated form. Hence, it is important to dilute it with a carrier oil like almond oil, olive oil, or sesame oil. Perform a patch test before moving forward.
- Aromatherapy: For aromatherapy benefits, you can diffuse the oil using a diffuser or a vaporizer. Make sure you do not congest yourself with the aroma. Avoid diffusing it if you have pets at home.
- Ingestion: The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has given GRAS (Generally Regarded As Safe) status to Cinnamon leaf oil. It means that the oil can be used in food or as intended as long as the oil is solvent-free. We do not recommend oral intake of essential oils without prescription by a doctor or a professional aromatherapist.
Side Effects of Cinnamon Oil
- Cinnamon leaf oil induces menstruation. Pregnant and breastfeeding women should avoid using oil.
- People suffering from cancer, kidney or liver diseases, hemophilia should avoid using the oil.
- People who are under multiple medications should avoid using the oil as it may cause drug interactions.
- Cinnamon leaf oil may be a dermal irritant for people with sensitive skin.
- Avoid exposure with mucous membrane.
- Keep the oil away from the reach of children.
- Cinnamon bark oil is considered as a dermal toxin. Avoid using bark oil.