Discussion has gone back and forth for several years now on whether cinnamon might be a powerful, previously unappreciated arrow in the quiver of diabetes medicines.
Cinnamon advocates have claimed it can have significant effects on blood sugar levels without any of the side effects or inconveniences of conventional diabetes drugs.
Skeptics have said there is no conclusive proof that cinnamon is a useful adjunct to diabetes treatments.
Now a meta-analysis of 10 studies of type 2 patients who have taken cinnamon supplements concludes that while cinnamon can have positive effects on cholesterol and blood glucose levels, it does not seem to have a significant effects on A1c levels.
However, researchers at Western University of Health Sciences in Pomona, California, who conducted the meta-analysis caution that the cinnamon supplement studies they looked at had been fairly short. Longer duration studies mightshow that cinnamon does have a positive effect on A1c.
In all, the trials under study involved 543 type 2 patients who ingested cinnamon, usually in powder or capsule form, at or near all meals. Total daily doses ranged from 120 mg to 6 grams.
The study can be accessed in the Annals of Family Medicine at www.annfammed.org/content/11/5/452.full