As a spicy-sweet herb, cinnamon is commonly used as a source of flavor for beverages, savory meals and desserts. Cinnamon also offers some health benefits -- for example, it might help improve blood sugar control in some people. Generally, cinnamon taken as a diet supplement is used in small doses -- in some cases, less than 1 gram a day. To receive a personalized dosage recommendation, consult a health care professional.
In powder form, 1 to 4 grams of cinnamon can be taken each day by adults. Typically, capsules of cinnamon powder are the simplest to take. However, you may also take one-half to three-quarter teaspoons of cinnamon powder, which is equivalent to 2 to 4 grams of this spice, after diluting it in your favorite beverage.
Volatile oil is a highly concentrated cinnamon extract. Adults should use cinnamon volatile oil sparingly, as this type of cinnamon supplement may cause painful oral inflammation. Health professionals with the University of Michigan Health System recommend using only a few drops of cinnamon volatile oil for no more than a few days. The NYU Langone Medical Center indicates that cinnamon oil is typically taken in doses of up to 0.2 grams daily.
While taking any type of cinnamon supplement, you may experience mild side effects. People who are sensitive to this spice may experience respiratory problems, such as shortness or breath of wheezing, following exposure to cinnamon. You may also experience mild skin irritation after handling a cinnamon supplement. Seek emergency medical care if you develop facial swelling, wheezing, difficulty swallowing, hives or weakness after taking a dose of cinnamon. These side effects may indicate that you are severely allergic to cinnamon. Without prompt medical intervention, a severe allergic reaction to cinnamon may be life-threatening.
If you have certain health problems or concerns, treatment with cinnamon supplements may not be appropriate. Do not use cinnamon supplements if you have a personal history of stomach ulcers, because cinnamon may exacerbate your symptoms. Additionally, women should not use cinnamon supplements while pregnant or breast-feeding.
- cinnamon image by Azazirov from Fotolia.com
This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or JillianMichaels.com.