honey & cinnamon cleanse… facts to back it up?

i’ve been seeing this “honey & cinnamon cleanse” allllll over pinterest and in my fb news feed lately. we all know fad diets are NOT the way to lose weight or be healthy. that takes actual effort, healthy eating, and exercise. however, this “cleanse,” because it’s all natural, supposedly helps aid in weight loss and “keeps the fat from sticking” even if you eat a high calorie diet.


the honey & cinnamon cleanse goes something like this:

” 1. use honey and cinnamon in a 1:2 ratio (one part cinnamon, two parts honey)
2. put the cinnamon in a cup or bowl.
3. boil one cup of water.
4. pour water over the cinnamon and let it steep for 30 minutes.
5. once the liquid has cooled, add honey. Always add honey to the cooled liquid – hot liquid will destroy the enzymes in the raw honey.
6. drink half of the resulting “tea” before going to bed. Cover and refrigerate the rest.
7. drink the other half first thing in the morning.
8. do not add anything to the recipe. only drink on an empty stomach, first thing in the morning and right before bed.” (http://www.thedoctorstv.com/melissaw72/posts/4475-Weight-Loss)

well readers, i’ve done some research from an ACTUAL research database (thank you, grad school tuition that paid for the free reign use of that!) because i want to know the facts and research behind it. i’m all for naturals and organics!
h&c c(picture from deeprootsfromhome.com)

so, here’s the basics of what i’ve found: (and i’m only focusing on weight loss… not all the benefits of honey & cinnamon :) )

honey & weight loss:
– when 70g raw honey was consumed daily for 30 days, the honey caused a mild reduction in body weight (1.3%) and body fat (1.1%)
– when compared to good ol sugar: body weight gain was 14.7% lower for rats fed honey, corresponding to a 13.3% lower consumption of food/energy. **These results suggest that in comparison with sucrose, honey may reduce weight gain presumably due to lower food intake**

cinnamon & weight loss:
– In a study involving 22 subjects with metabolic syndrome, subjects were divided into two groups and given either 500 mg/day of an aqueous extract of cinnamon (Cinnulin PF, Integrity Nutraceuticals, Spring Hill, TN) or a placebo for 12 weeks. There was a 0.7% decrease in body fat in the cinnamon-treated group

maybe. if you count about 1% body fat loss over 30 days… lol. statistically speaking, the findings were significant, but it’s surely not as magical as people are proclaiming!! drinking a thick paste twice a day for me to lose 1% body fat isn’t worth it. i’d rather do an extra 50 jumping jacks lol. but, honey and cinnamon have other health benefits. remember, this was just about the cleanse & its weight loss claims :)

as always, conduct your own SCHOLARLY research. especially when it comes to your health!!

warnings about cinnamon intake:

– often in supermarkets you don’t buy true cinnamon, but cassia (chinese cinnamon bark), which is a cheap cinnamon from china, vietnam and indonesia. it contains a potentially dangerous substance called coumarin. (unfortunately, saigon cinnamon is actually cassia. look for CEYLON cinnamon!)
– cassia should be avoided by pregnant women, those with liver disease, and diabetes
– coumarin is toxic to the liver, is an anticoagulant (it thins the blood), and has been shown to cause cancer in rodents
– the Tolerable Daily Intake (TDI) for coumarin of 0.07 mg per kg of bodyweight per day
– if you consume cassia over a period of time (such as with oatmeal a few times a week), you can greatly exceed your TDI
– cassia cinnamon should only be used sparingly, as a very light sprinkling, and not in teaspoon amounts

try to only buy CEYLON cinnamon. and again, conduct your own research, as it is YOUR health :) :)



Ediriweera, E. R. H. S. S., & Premarathna, N. Y. S. (2012). Medicinal and cosmetic uses of Bee's Honey - A review. AYU [An International Quarterly Journal of Research in Ayurveda], 33(2), 178. Retrieved from http://go.galegroup.com.ezproxy.lib.purdue.edu/ps/i.do?id=GALE%7CA313657525&v=2.1&u=purdue_main&it=r&p=HRCA&sw=w

N. Matan, H. Rimkeeree, A.J. Mawson, P. Chompreeda, V. Haruthaithanasan, M. Parker, Antimicrobial activity of cinnamon and clove oils under modified atmosphere conditions, International Journal of Food Microbiology, Volume 107, Issue 2, 15 March 2006, Pages 180-185, ISSN 0168-1605, 10.1016/j.ijfoodmicro.2005.07.007.

N. Yaghoobi, Noori Al-Waili, M. Ghayour-Mobarhan, et al., “Natural Honey and Cardiovascular Risk Factors; Effects on Blood Glucose, Cholesterol, Triacylglycerole, CRP, and Body Weight Compared with Sucrose,” TheScientificWorldJOURNAL, vol. 8, pp. 463-469, 2008. doi:10.1100/tsw.2008.64

T.Ø. Fotland, J.E. Paulsen, T. Sanner, J. Alexander, T. Husøy, Risk assessment of coumarin using the bench mark dose (BMD) approach: Children in Norway which regularly eat oatmeal porridge with cinnamon may exceed the TDI for coumarin with several folds, Food and Chemical Toxicology, Volume 50, Issues 3–4, March–April 2012, Pages 903-912, ISSN 0278-6915, 10.1016/j.fct.2011.12.005. (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0278691511006703)
Tricia M. Nemoseck, Erin G. Carmody, Allison Furchner-Evanson, Marsa Gleason, Amy Li, Hayley Potter, Lauren M. Rezende, Kelly J. Lane, Mark Kern, Honey promotes lower weight gain, adiposity, and triglycerides than sucrose in rats, Nutrition Research, Volume 31, Issue 1, January 2011, Pages 55-60, ISSN 0271-5317, 10.1016/j.nutres.2010.11.002.
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    1. cinnamon is a bark – whether ground or in stick form it is the same. The point that was being made was that one should be careful where the cinnamon is coming from. Often cassia is sold as cinnamon therefore one should be sure to look for ceylon cinnamon (REAL cinnamon)


  1. Thanks for the great post! I am Sri Lankan (formerly known as Ceylon), and I was glad to see this. In our little country, we do have the world’s best cinnamon and tea :) :)


  2. Ah, thank you! I like a cinnamon stick in my tea and cinnamon toast will never leave my diet, but for weight loss, yeah, it looks like smaller portions and exercise are still the answer.


  3. Alex – I can’t tell you how grateful I am for posting that note about cassia “cinnamon”. I was running out and remembered something you had once posted about the best kind of cinnamon. I did a quick online search to figure out what I needed to get. Imagine the look of horror on my face when I realized that the reason I’ve been bleeding a little more profusely than usual with papercuts or scabs coming off is most likely because I’ve been using about a 1/4 tsp. of the grocery-store bought cassia in my morning smoothies for months! Oh hey, and probably toxify-ing my liver with the coumarin. Holy Toledo. Thanks for planting the pea in my brain because I am definitely getting on Amazon to make the switch to organic ceylon! (Fyi, to anyone else looking – the simply organic cinnamon is NOT ceylon, but I have tried & liked their other spices.) Thank You!!


  4. I got SO excited to see a reference list, I’M so glad this isn’t just hearsay and you actually do the research. There is hope! Thankyou :)


    1. the best honey is what you can get from a local farmer’s market. local honey will help if you suffer from outdoor allergies. also, I just read an article saying that many grocery store honeys (ie: the honey bear) actually have corn syrup in them.


  5. I actually just tries this…. I wish I would have looked this up 45 minutes ago before my over bearing health nut ex sister in law told me I had to try this! It was awful! If someone can stomach it more power to you!!!!! No way I could force my self twice a day to drink that to lose 1% body fat in 30day. I’ll do my walking every day!


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