Is Cinnamon Safe to Eat if You Have Fatty Liver / NAFLD?

We all know that cinnamon is extremely healthy (and tasty at the same time) – I think there’s no doubt about that. Knowing that cinnamon helps our bodies a lot (reducing inflammation, reducing insulin resistance and lowering blood sugar levels among many other things), I introduced it in my menu and consumed it numerous times per week.

But it just happened that recently I stumbled upon an article that claimed that cinnamon was actually… toxic and it was doing a lot of harm to our bodies, especially potential damage to the liver. I was shocked and I had to find out more about this, so please read on to find out if it is indeed safe or a good idea to eat cinnamon if you have a fatty liver!

After I did my research, the short answer would be “no”. Fortunately, the longer answer sounds a lot better and cinnamon is indeed healthy and has all the benefits that we know it has. But it is very important what type of cinnamon you’re eating!

Because there are apparently two types of cinnamon: the Cassia cinnamon (which is what we usually find in stores, restaurants and everywhere – which is cheap but not so healthy) and the Ceylon cinnamon, the “true” cinnamon, the healthy one, but the more expensive one. The difference between the two is obvious, as you can see in the image below:

1 is the real Ceylon cinnamon, 2 is the regular, cassia cinnamon

1 is the real Ceylon cinnamon, 2 is the regular, cassia cinnamon

But why is regular cinnamon bad and Ceylon cinnamon good?

The regular cinnamon is cheap and still has that true cinnamon flavor – even if not exactly like it. But since it’s cheap, it’s used on a wider scale. However, even though the regular cinnamon itself is known to still have the beneficial properties of the “true” Ceylon cinnamon, it also has a lot more of a bad boy called Coumarin. Apparently, this coumarin, if consumed in large quantities, can cause liver damage in some sensitive people. And since we are suffering already from NAFLD, we might be in that “sensitive” category. Read more in the Medical News Today article or on Wikipedia which greatly explains the toxicity of Coumarin.

And regular cinnamon powder has up to 63 times more coumarin compared to Ceylon cinnamon powder (source here). That’s a lot!

Should you stop eating cinnamon?

Definitely not! You could greatly reduce the quantity of regular cinnamon you eat, but the best choice would be to switch completely to the Ceylon cinnamon, which has the same benefits of regular cinnamon but without the added risk of extra liver damage and with greatly reduced toxicity. To make things even healthier, go for Organic Ceylon cinnamon and make sure you only purchase it from sources you can trust. I get mine on Amazon, like the 1 Pound bag of organic Ceylon Cinnamon from Frontier or, if you want smaller quantities, Indus Organic Ceylon Cinnamon Powder. Of course, it’s a lot cheaper to go with the first product!

Remember that it’s your life and health that we’re talking about, so I suggest you switch to the new type of cinnamon as soon as possible and stop eating the potentially toxic regular cinnamon.

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