- Cinnamomum zeylanicum L.
- Laurel family
Parts Usually Used
Bark, oil obtained from bark and leaves
Description of Plant(s) and Culture
The dried inner bark of the branches of a small, tropical, evergreen
laurel tree. The bark is peeled off and as the pieces are dried, they
curl up into quills.
Found growing around marshes.
Stimulant, alterative, analgesic, aromatic, astringent, carminative,
diaphoretic, diuretic, expectorant, febrifuge, mild laxative
Essential oil including phellandrene, eugenol, gums, sugar, coumarins,
cinnamic aldehyde, methuleugenol; mucilage, tannin, sucrose and starch
Legends, Myths and Stories
Cinnamon was probably the first spice used by man. Ancient records
reveal that it was used for more than 5,000 years. The countless flavoring
uses of this valuable spice need not be enumerated.
Cinnamon brandy is made by soaking crushed cinnamon bark a fortnight
In the Far East, the cinnamon tree is grown in southern China, but
is native to Kuangsi. Since ancient times, cinnamon has been used
as medicine and the flavoring spice we know today.
Chinese herbalists tell of older people, in their 70s and 80s, developing
a cough accompanied by frequent spitting of whitish phlegm. A helpful
remedy, they suggest, is chewing and swallowing a very small pinch
of powdered cinnamon. Should be of the highest quality, determined
by a bitter-sweet taste. If too bitter and/or not oily, the quality
is poor. This remedy can also help people with cold feet and hands,
especially at night.
Quills or sticks are used in spiced punches, teas, cooked fruit,
pickling liquids. Ground spice used in sweet baked goods, cooked in
fruit, and some meat and fish dishes.
Cinnamon raises vitality, warms and stimulates all the vital functions
of the body, counteracts congestion, is antirheumatic,
stops diarrhea, taken in milk
for dysentery, colds,
bronchitis, nausea and vomiting,
improves digestion, relieves
abdominal spasms, counteracts gas, aids the peripheral circulation
of the blood. Cinnamon tea offers helpful relaxation for the stomach
upset by the tension and strain
of modern living.
Makes an interesting liqueur.
Formulas or Dosages
Dose: take a rounded tsp. of cinnamon to a cup of boiling
water, stir it and drink while hot. Drink a small portion at a time,
4 to 5 times a day, or drink a cup as needed for griping and pain
in the bowels due to gas. Use 1/4 tsp. to a cup of other herbs to
flavor them. Put it in with the herbs when the tea is made.
Contraindicated in therapeutic doses for pregnant women or individuals
with wasting and dryness; especially the essential oil, because the
herb is a potential uterine stimulant.
Use this herb with care in feverish conditions and bleeding disorders.