why am i craving cinnamon

Why Do I Crave Cinnamon Right Now and 9 Reasons Behind Your Cinnamon Craving

Are You Eating Cinnamon daily and wondering Why I am Craving Cinnamon So Much? Whether sprinkling it on your morning oatmeal or stirring it into a hearty stew, you feel like giving your body something good. But what is The Kicker? What are the risks of eating too much cinnamon, every day, especially while pregnant?

why am i craving cinnamon

Oh, The Sweet Smell of Cinnamon and My Cravings

Let’s talk about something that’s probably nestled in your kitchen right now – cinnamon.

Why are we talking about cinnamon cravings? Because, dear reader, this isn’t just the spice that’s dusted on top of your latte or giving your cookies that extra zing. A craving for cinnamon can tell a story.

There’s more to these cravings than meets the tongue, including consuming cinnamon based food to control your blood sugar. Cinnamon and sugar cravings can mean much more than you might realize, and we’re here to break it down.

Now, as someone who’s spent a fair amount of time playing around with spices (and by ‘playing around,’ I mean meticulously experimenting in professional kitchens), I’ve developed a special fondness for this aromatic wonder and the historical reasonings behind why people crave cinnamon so much.

Originating from the exotic bark of Cinnamomum trees, cinnamon comes in two main types: the milder, aristocratic Ceylon and its feistier cousin, Cassia. Each has its character and story in the dishes they grace.

Why does a pregnant woman find herself reaching for cinnamon more than ever?

It turns out that there’s a whole world behind this cinnamon craving, from hormonal changes altering taste perceptions to the body’s intuitive need for certain nutrients.

But sweets cinnamon’s natural flavor and charm doesn’t end in the kitchen.

Oh no, historically speaking, it’s been around the pasture salt block. From ancient Egyptians who used it for embalming (yes, really) to being a star player in the spice trade dramas, cinnamon has had quite the journey.

And let’s not forget, it’s been the secret weapon in grandma’s traditional apple butter and those festive cinnamon rolls that make you feel like it’s Christmas every day. Why am I Craving Cinnamon?

Nutritional Profile

Cinnamon Sticks

I like to think of ground cinnamon as a bit of a nutritional ninja – small but mighty.

While it’s not a calorie-buster (thank goodness for that!), it packs a punch with some pretty impressive components that have linked cinnamon cravings to a nutritional deficiency.

First, cinnamaldehyde is the compound that gives cinnamon its signature flavor and aroma. This stuff makes your senses dance whenever you open a cinnamon jar.

Smelling cinnamon is not just a sensory delight; it’s also the leading player in many of cinnamon’s health benefits.

Do you know how blueberries and dark chocolate always get all the fame for being antioxidant-rich? Well, cinnamon is right up there with them.

This means it’s not just adding flavor to your dishes; it’s also helping your body fight off those pesky free radicals when your mood dips.

And let’s not forget about all the nutrients and fiber! Yes, even spices have fiber. It might not be a lot, but every little bit counts in the world of cooking with essential fatty acids.

Cinnamon is like that secret ingredient in your diet that subtly contributes to your overall well-being without realizing it.

Why Am I Craving Cinnamon?

Cinnamon Sticks

I’ve noticed that a cinnamon related craving isn’t just about hunger; they’re often about emotions and sometimes the same foods and experiences we associate with food and sweet tasting baked goods. And when it comes to craving cinnamon, well, there’s a whole spice rack as to reasons why:

A Feast for the Senses

  • Aroma & Flavor: Smelling Cinnamon with it’s unique aroma and flavor have a way of taking center stage in any dish. The warm, sweet, and slightly spicy taste is not just a delight; it’s a memory trigger. Each whiff takes you back to cozy mornings and festive evenings.

  • Mood Booster: The smell of cinnamon has been known to lift spirits. A dash of cinnamon in my kitchen is like adding a pinch of happiness to the dish when your blood sugar drops or when your mood dips.

The Comfort Factor

  • Nostalgia: For many of us, cinnamon reminds us of comfort foods and happy times. Whether cinnamon rolls from your favorite bakery or grandma’s famous apple pie with a cup of cinnamon tea; this spice is often at the heart of our most cherished food memories.

  • Emotional Eating: We often crave cinnamon because it makes us feel good. In stressful times, I’ve found myself reaching for that ground cinnamon shaker more often than not.

The Health Connection

  • Blood Sugar Regulation: There’s some science as to why we crave cinnamon, too. Cinnamon is known for its potential to help regulate blood sugar levels or keep your blood sugar stable. This can be especially true for those with a sweet tooth trying to reduce eating sugar and control sugar cravings.

  • Nutritional Benefits: Sometimes, our body craves what it needs. Suddenly craving cinnamon is not just tasty; it has antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties.

Habit and Routine

  • Daily Rituals: If you’re like me and enjoy a sprinkle of cinnamon in your morning coffee or oatmeal, your body might expect that delightful taste as part of your daily routine.

  • Culinary Experimentation: As a chef, experimenting with flavors is my daily bread. If you’ve been playing with cinnamon in your recipes, your palate might have developed a fondness for this versatile spice.

Why Am I Craving Cinnamon While Pregnant?

Holding Pregant Belly

Pregnancy is a rollercoaster of cravings; if your craving cinnamon more often than not, you’re not alone. Let’s break down why this might be happening:

Hormonal Changes

  • Taste and Smell Sensitivity: During pregnancy, hormonal fluctuations can make you more sensitive to tastes and smells. Cinnamon, with its strong and distinct flavor, can be particularly appealing.

  • Mood Swings: The comforting scent of cinnamon might also help in balancing the mood swings that often accompany pregnancy.

Nutritional Needs

  • Natural Sweetener: Cinnamon can be a great way to add sweetness without the sugar if you’re watching your sugar intake during pregnancy. It’s a healthy hack I often recommend.

  • Iron Boost: Interestingly, cinnamon contains a small amount of iron – a crucial nutrient during pregnancy. Your body might be nudging you toward what it needs.

Nausea and Digestive Comfort

  • Soothing Properties: Many pregnant women find the smell and taste of cinnamon soothing, especially if they’re dealing with nausea or digestive discomfort.

  • Gastrointestinal Benefits: Cinnamon is known for its potential to aid digestion and reduce bloating, which can be a godsend during pregnancy.

Safety First

  • Moderation is Key: As with everything in pregnancy, moderation is crucial. While a sprinkle of cinnamon is generally safe, overdoing it is not recommended.

  • Consult Your Doctor: If you’re unsure or have concerns about your cinnamon cravings during pregnancy, it’s always a good idea to talk to your healthcare provider.

Health Benefits of Cinnamon

Peaches with Cinnamon

In my kitchen, cinnamon is more than just a spice; it’s a secret weapon for health. Let’s unwrap some of its most impressive benefits:

  • Blood Sugar Regulation:

    • Natural Regulator: One of the most talked-about benefits of cinnamon is its potential to help regulate blood sugar levels. This is particularly beneficial for those trying to manage or prevent diabetes.

    • Post-Meal Sugar Spikes: Incorporating cinnamon into meals might help reduce the spike in blood sugar levels that typically occur after eating.

  • Antioxidant Powerhouse:

    • Fighting Free Radicals: Cinnamon is loaded with powerful antioxidants, which help protect your body against oxidative stress caused by free radicals.

    • Comparative Strength: In terms of antioxidant activity, cinnamon outranks many other spices and even some superfoods. It’s like the superhero of the spice world!

  • Anti-Inflammatory Properties:

    • Reducing Inflammation: Chronic inflammation can be a root cause of many health issues. Cinnamon’s anti-inflammatory properties can help in reducing this risk.

    • Overall Well-being: Regular consumption of cinnamon can improve overall health by reducing inflammation.

  • Heart Health:

    • Cholesterol and Blood Pressure: Studies suggest that cinnamon might help lower levels of bad LDL cholesterol and blood pressure, contributing to heart health.

    • Circulation Boost: The warming effect of cinnamon can also aid in improving blood circulation, a bonus for heart health.

  • Other Notable Benefits:

    • Neurological Health: Some research indicates that cinnamon could positively affect neurological health, potentially reducing the risk of diseases like Alzheimer’s.

    • Digestive Aid: It’s also known for aiding digestion and soothing the stomach, making it a go-to spice for those with digestive issues.

I’m constantly amazed at how this humble spice enhances the flavor of dishes and brings many health benefits to the table.

Remember, though, moderation is key – it’s a spice, not a magic potion!

Potential Risks of Cinnamon

Why Am I Craving Cinnamon

As much as I adore cinnamon and often consider it my culinary comrade, it’s essential to talk about the flip side. Yes, even our beloved spices have their limits.

  • Cassia vs. Ceylon – Know Your Types:

    • Coumarin Content: Cassia cinnamon, the more common variety, has higher levels of coumarin, which can be harmful in large doses. It’s like having too much of a good thing – not always the best idea.

    • Choosing Wisely: Ceylon cinnamon, on the other hand, has lower coumarin levels. I recommend this variety as a chef if you use cinnamon regularly and in larger quantities.

  • Allergies and Sensitivities:

    • Allergic Reactions: Like any food, cinnamon can cause allergic reactions in some people. This can range from simple skin irritation to more severe reactions. Always listen to your body’s cues.

    • Respiratory Issues: Inhaling cinnamon powder (we’ve all been there, getting too close to the spice jar) can cause respiratory irritation, especially for those with asthma.

  • Medication Interactions:

    • Blood Thinners and More: Cinnamon can interact with certain medications, including blood thinners, diabetes medication, and heart medicines. Chatting with your doctor if you’re on these medications and love to indulge in cinnamon-rich foods is always a good idea.

  • A Note on Quantity:

    • Moderation Matters: As a chef, I always preach the gospel of moderation. The same applies to cinnamon. It’s a spice, not a main course. Enjoy it, but don’t go overboard.

    • Daily Limits: There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to how much cinnamon is too much, but generally, a teaspoon a day is considered safe.

How Do I Incorporate Cinnamon in My Diet?

Latte with Cinnamon

Cinnamon isn’t just a spice for your latte, cinnamon rolls, or a seasonal pie ingredient.

I’ve discovered countless ways to weave this aromatic wonder into everyday meals for its flavor and health benefits.

Here are some of my favorite ways to include cinnamon in the diet:

  • Morning Kickstart:

    • Oatmeal and Cereals: Start your day with a sprinkle of cinnamon on your oatmeal or cereal. It adds a warm, sweet flavor without the need for extra sugar.

    • Smoothies: Add a dash of cinnamon to your morning smoothie. It pairs wonderfully with fruits like bananas and apples.

  • Savory Dishes:

    • Stews and Curries: Cinnamon can add a depth of flavor to stews and curries. A stick of cinnamon thrown into the pot works magic.

    • Roasted Vegetables: Before roasting, sprinkle cinnamon on root vegetables like carrots and sweet potatoes. It brings out their natural sweetness.

  • Snack Time:

    • Yogurt and Fruit: Mixing cinnamon into Greek yogurt with honey and fruit creates a delicious and healthy snack.

    • Nuts and Popcorn: Toss almonds or popcorn with cinnamon for a quick, flavorful snack.

  • Sweet Treats:

    • Baking: From cookies to cakes, cinnamon can be your go-to spice for baking snack foods. It adds warmth and complexity to any sweet treat.

    • Desserts: Sprinkle cinnamon over desserts like ice cream or puddings for an extra flavor boost.

  • Beverages:

    • Teas and Coffees: A pinch of cinnamon in your tea or coffee can transform your regular cup into a flavorful experience.

    • Warm Drinks: Nothing beats a warm, cinnamon-infused drink like apple cider or hot chocolate in colder weather.

In Conclusion: More Than A Craving

As we end our flavorful journey with our constant cinnamon craving, it’s clear this isn’t just any ordinary spice.

It’s a culinary companion that has been by my side through various stages of life, including the unique and often surprising period of pregnancy.

With its sweet, warm embrace, Cinnamon has a special way of making dishes and moments memorable.

This wasn’t about satisfying a sweet tooth or adding a kick to my meals. It was more profound. The Mix of why we crave comfort foods, reliving cherished memories, and perhaps even my body’s intuitive way of seeking balance and nutrition.

Cinnamon’s journey from ancient times to our modern kitchens is a testament to its enduring appeal.

Whether it’s enhancing the flavor of a dish, offering health benefits, or simply being a source of comfort during pregnancy, cinnamon holds a unique place in the culinary world.

It’s not just about the taste; it’s about the experience and the stories it weaves into our lives.

So, let cinnamon be your guide, whether you’re a fellow chef, a food enthusiast, or someone navigating the wild ride of pregnancy food cravings.

Let it inspire your culinary adventures, comfort you when needed, and add that special touch to your meals and memories.

FAQ and Additional Information:

Why Am I Craving Cinnamon Before Period?

While these are potential reasons for craving cinnamon before your period, individual experiences can vary greatly.

Hormonal Fluctuations: As your period approaches, hormonal changes occur. These changes can affect your taste buds and sense of smell, sometimes leading to specific cravings.

Cinnamon’s strong, comforting scent and flavor might become particularly appealing during this time.

Blood Sugar Levels: Before menstruation, some women experience changes in blood sugar levels.

Cinnamon is known for its potential to help stabilize and replenish blood sugar, so your body might be seeking it out intuitively to balance these fluctuations.

Mood and Comfort: The premenstrual phase can often accompany mood swings or discomfort. Cinnamon has a warming, comforting quality that can be soothing during this time.

Its sweet and spicy aroma can also be a mood booster, providing a sense of comfort and well-being.

Magnesium Levels: Cinnamon is a source of magnesium, a mineral that some women’s bodies crave more of before their period.

Magnesium can help alleviate some premenstrual symptoms, such as cramps and headaches.

Stress Relief: The period before menstruation can sometimes be stressful due to various premenstrual symptoms.

Cinnamon is often associated with stress relief and relaxation, possibly explaining the cravings.

Associative Comfort: If you consume cinnamon-rich foods or beverages when you’re feeling down or in need of comfort, your body might start associating cinnamon with relief and comfort, leading to cravings before your period.

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