Truth about Cinnamon

Discussion in 'Pastries & Baking' started by dagger, Oct 8, 2015.

  1. dagger

    dagger

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    Is it dangerous if consumed it large quantities and just how large would that have to be? What about types Ceylon, Saigon Cassia and Vietnamese cinnamon which I think taste strongest.
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2015
  2. flipflopgirl

    flipflopgirl

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  3. panini

    panini

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    @Dagger  ,

    It's the old saying, things in moderation are probably good for you. Things in excess will hurt you.

    I personally grew up with a grandmother who used home recipes for everything. As kids, whenever we had an upset stomach or anything else for that matter, she used a lot of baking spices to make tea for us. I guess because she had them available in the house.

    She made us tea with cinnamon, worked. Cardamon, worked. nutmeg, worked. Most of the time the tea was chamomile base with the spice.

    I can remember doing a paper in college about the unhealthy aspects of spices. Most of the spices taken in large quantity were bad for you.

    I think large amounts of nutmeg makes you hallucinate. Kids used to try to eat as much dry cinnamon as a hack. I thinki they choked on the powder or it stopped their breathing, something like that. I have sludge in my gallbladder and was told to stay away from large amounts of cardamon. just sayin
     
  4. dagger

    dagger

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    You believe everything you read on the net, 50 of this half dozen of that. Bakers would know the differences and which works best.
     
  5. flipflopgirl

    flipflopgirl

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    Are you implying that I do not bake?

    mimi
     
  6. dagger

    dagger

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    I like adding cinnamon to cookies and drinks. Started using store bought then switched to Vietnamese now reading about true cinnamon which never used. People on here must have used all three and the ceylon stuff is $26.00 lbs.
     
  7. kingfarvito

    kingfarvito

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    What are you attempting to ask?
     
  8. maryb

    maryb

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    I prefer Vietnamese cinnamon. Buy it by the pound from Penzey's! Good stuff and very fresh.
     
  9. dagger

    dagger

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    I know what I read but true cinnamon never used. Some said its weak tasting, some taste isn't like other cinnamons while others think its great. Trying to find out if its worth the price and are the dangers real or bull.
     
  10. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    What volumes are you considering? It can be risky. Unless you have untreatable issues, i think modern medicine is better and more controlled.

    True cinnamon is milder and not worth the extra cost for my uses.
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2015
  11. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Chamomile tea will highlight blonde hair and help to induce sleep.  It can relax the nervous soul!  8)
     
  12. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    I add a pinch of Ceylon cinnamon to many of my beef dishes.
     
  13. meezenplaz

    meezenplaz

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    Seems to me you're asking subjective questions to subjective people to determine whether  

    previous subjective statements regarding a substance are true or not. Seems a futile quest to me. 

    Perhaps you should simply try some and form your own subjective opinion.

    Also fail to see how a member's statement that she learned something from an article indicates she believes 

    all she reads on the net. Seems a bit of a presumptive leap to me.

    --M 
     
  14. chefross

    chefross

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    Most of the cinnamon you buy at the grocery store is Cassia bark. It has less flavor then say....Ceylon.

    As to the OP. True that a few spices can make you sick if eaten in large quantity. Ginger root, Nutmeg, and cinnamon are but a few. 

    Ginger root supposedly calms the stomach, and nutmeg helps get rid of headaches, but in larger doses can, in some cases, be fatal.
     
  15. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Cassia vs Ceylon, two different flavors.  Cassia has a "pronounced bite" where Ceylon offers a lemony smoothness that goes well with beef dishes.  As to which one offers more flavor imho is a toss up.  Subjective as it were.
     
  16. pete

    pete Moderator Staff Member

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    Virtually all the "cinnamon" sold in the US, in major grocery stores is cassia, not true cinnamon, so for many people, who have grown up eating cassia, true cinnamon doesn't taste "quite right."  I find cassia to be more assertive with a stronger flavor and more of a bite, while true cinnamon is a little more subtle and definitely more complex, with a definite citrusy note added to the mix.  Personally, I keep both around and use the different ones for different applications.  And I agree, that which one is "better" is definitely a subjective thing.

    As to the health aspects of consuming cinnamon, I can't really say as I haven't read up on it, but there does seem to be research that consuming larger quantities of cassia can pose certain health concerns.  A bit of reading seems to indicate that eating a teaspoon or more a day can start causing issues for people.  That doesn't really concern me as a teaspoon of cinnamon a day is a pretty significant amount.  Just look at how much most recipes call for, now divide that by the number of servings they produce.  I doubt that overindulging in cinnamon rolls (which might bring you above that 1 teaspoon mark) on an occasional basis would be that problematic, but regularly consuming high amounts might cause problems.  But this isn't new to the food world.  Many spices and herbs are known to be fine in the amounts that are used in cooking but can cause sickness and even death in much higher quantities.  Even those herbs and spices which have health benefits at lower levels can be (and usually are) toxic at much higher quantities.  So as stated above moderation is the key, but I wouldn't worry about it, at the levels that most people consume cinnamon.
     
  17. chefwriter

    chefwriter

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         First of all, I had no idea there were two cinnamons (cassia and true) so this has been a very educational post for me. But now that I know, how do I tell? 

    Are the containers labeled as such or are there definitive characteristics of each so I can tell on sight? 

         As for eating enough to do harm, it would seem one would have to eat spoonfuls of spices to suffer and I can't see anyone doing that on purpose. 

    Of course, there are always those who enjoy seeing who can eat the hottest peppers or hot sauce.

    There is a video on Youtube called something like 

    "Ten ghost peppers in ten minutes." Needless to say, the individual is not successful. I'd post a link but I'm not very good with that. 
     
  18. pete

    pete Moderator Staff Member

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    First thing to remember is that both "true" cinnamon and cassia come from the same genus, which contains about a dozen or so species, not all of which are used as a culinary spice, so when talking about "true" cinnamon vs. fake cinnamon, or cassia, the differences are not huge.  What is called "true" cinnamon comes from Ceylon.  Since it usually garners a higher price it is usually referred to either Ceylon or Sri Lanka cinnamon to differentiate it from other cinnamons (aka cassia).  When ground it is pretty much impossible to tell the difference by looks alone.  By aroma, it is less pungent than cassia, with notes of citrus, but again it can be difficult to tell, if not almost impossible, especially for someone not readily familiar with the differences.  In stick form it is pretty easy to tell as cassia is made up of 1 thick layer of bark rolled into a quill, while "true" cinnamon has many delicate layers.

    Back to the health issue. It seems that cassia contains a significantly higher amount of coumarin (sp?) which is a natural blood thinner, and as such taking cassia in high doses can cause liver damage.  This really doesn't seem to be an issue for people who just eat cinnamon in regularly quantities, but for those that take cinnamon supplements or oils to treat health conditions.  One of the issues is the supplement industry, which relies on herbs and spices, is not regulated by the FDA to the extent that drugs are, and in fact the FDA does not require that a company prove that their supplements are safe.  People need to stop thinking that just because it's "natural," that it's an herb or spice, that taking a supplement is safe. As I stated before, many herbs and spices do have medical properties beyond just culinary properties, but taking them in excess, just like taking any drug can be toxic. Before taking any supplement one should always consult with one's doctor to make sure that they are not harming themselves, and then purchase supplements only from reputable suppliers.  Just recently a study was done, testing supplements and many of them not only, didn't contain significant amounts of the herb that was supposed to be in them, but contained all sorts of other herbs not listed.-end of my PSA.
     
  19. flipflopgirl

    flipflopgirl

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    There are differences but unless you are looking are easy to miss (I am talking about baking as it is diluted down greatly when used for this purpose)

    Like I mentioned before I had no idea that cinnamon could be toxic.

    Not that I freaked out or anything lol.

    Was just interesting.

    The fisherman always says he is allergic but never has a problem with anything I bake (but will turn it down in public).

    I asked him what symptoms to watch for and he complained it makes him sweat profusely and feel shaky...... I suspect there is a bit of tachycardia like was mentioned in my link.

    Interesting.....may need to speak with our life insurance guy lol  ;-)

    mimi
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2015
  20. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Here at this thread is the very first time I'm seeing the term "true cinnamon" ever.  Never heard of it.  All of the cinnamons that I know are cited at MySpiceSage.com and Penzeys.com: Ceylon and Cassia or Saigon.