Does this mean we can eat with abandon at the Cinnabon? No. But there is a new study out from Britain that tested the effects of cinnamon in diabetics. What makes it different from older studies is included a group using a placebo. In this study, 58 adults with type 2 diabetes were treated with 2 grams of cinnamon a day, or a placebo, for 12 weeks.
Compared to the group taking placebo, those assigned to take cinnamon saw a significant reduction in their levels of HbA1c (also known as glycosylated haemoglobin – which gives an indication of braod blood sugar control over the preceding 2-3 months or so). In other words, treatment with cinnamon led to improved blood sugar control in type 2 diabetics.
But that’s not all, because those treated with cinnamon also enjoyed improvements in a range of other parameters including blood pressure (both the higher ‘systolic’ and lower ‘diastolic’ values) and waist circumference. Taken together, these findings would be expected to translate in to a reduced risk of chronic disease including cardiovascular disease (e.g. heart disease and stroke) and diabetic complications.
The authors of this study concluded that, “Cinnamon supplementation could be considered as an additional dietary supplement option to regulate blood glucose and blood pressure levels along with conventional medications to treat type 2 diabetes mellitus.”
Personally, I won’t be buying a big bottle of supplements. But I think it would be a great idea to put a cinnamon shaker on the table between the salt and pepper.