Cinnamon. When I hear this word, I am instantly transported to a magical land of delicious, sweet and spicy treats with wafting aromas that make my mouth water. It’s Christmastime; there are cookies, cinnamon rolls, chai tea, and spiced cider—all being enjoyed with friends and family.
Why is cinnamon such a popular treat during the holidays? I don’t see many people enjoying it in July, even though it is a delicious addition to just about anything.
I believe the key to cinnamon’s holiday popularity is twofold. First, its ability to warm the body and soul with its delightfully spicy aroma and its touch of sweetness really helps keep us warm. Unlike more dramatically hot herbs such as cayenne, cinnamon warms gently, like being wrapped in a fuzzy blanket by the fire, reading a good book.
Secondly, cinnamon is an excellent digestive aid. Its ability to help us digest all those sweet treats we enjoy over the holidays while soothing the mucous membranes with its demulcent nature, is an amazing gift from this highly versatile herb. It may even help us recover from some of those sugar crashes caused by one too many cookies.
Indeed, this medicinal and culinary ally embraces the season, bringing in the spice of life wrapped in a great big sweet hug. In this issue we talk a lot about cinnamon’s many benefits, its history, its many uses throughout the world, and how it has spread itself over the globe. I hope you enjoy it and are able to spice up your winter with some of what you learn!