Cinnamon and clove – you probably have them sitting in your kitchen right now without even realizing that they could play a key role in maintaining your health. Blood sugar imbalances such as diabetes and hypoglycemia are rampant in the US, but two studies presented at Experimental Biology 2006 revealed that these two common spices can help to combat this epidemic.

The results provided new evidence supporting the use of cinnamon as an anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant. They also revealed that the spice is able to lower cholesterol and glucose levels and to improve how well insulin functions within the body.

Dr. Richard Anderson demonstrated that ingestion of ¼ to ½ a teaspoon of cinnamon taken twice a day decreased the risk of developing diabetes and cardiovascular disease by 10 to 30 percent. In order to reap the full benefits of cinnamon, however, it needs to be ingested in capsule form. Our saliva contains chemicals which hinder the beneficial effects of the spice.

A related study of clove extract showed that this spice also has the ability to improve the function of insulin, lower glucose levels and decrease LDL cholesterol and triglycerides in people with type 2 diabetes. Participants took the equivalent of one to two cloves per day.

Earlier laboratory studies back these current findings. As we learn more about the healing powers of common herbs and spices, it becomes clear that the common saying “The cure is in the cupboard” holds a great deal of truth.

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