SPICING IT UP

Sprinkle on your coffee, mix it with honey, light it up with your candle or just throw in a few drops in your body oil – cinnamon will give it all a warm, healthy twist.

Whether you walk in to my home or office, or meet me in the mall, the scent of cinnamon is something that you will definitely find surrounding me. The sweet, sensuous, warm and comforting note of this wonder spice resonates with my soul. I love its character – it’s subtly sweet and can be disarmingly spicy. Apart from its irresistible scent and its elusive flavor, the woody spice is also known for its numerous health benefits. It is believed to help lose weight, lower blood sugar, alleviate aches and pains, fight cancer and a lot more. I can’t vouch for all its goodness but here are my experiences with the spice.

Spiced Water

I generally start my day with half teaspoon of honey and one drop each of cinnamon and lemon essential oils in a glass of warm water. This strong, flavourful drink very gently eases you out of your sleepiness. It’s refreshing but it’s gentle in being so. The drink doesn’t hurl you out of your slumber. It coaxes, cajoles and warms itself into your system and gradually wakes you up to face the day… sounds poetic? I know, but that’s how it works. This is a good digestive and is an excellent drink to have, if you have had a heavy dinner the night before. I have this sometimes after lunch as well, to keep myself from falling asleep on my work table. The cinnamon, honey and lemon mix is also a great relief for stomach cramps.

Mulled Wine

Just the name itself is so comforting, imagine how it tastes… I generally add a lot of fruits and rum to make this spicy concoction, however, when I am mixing a drink for myself, I keep it very simple – a glass of red wine warmed with a stick of roasted cinnamon. Research indicates both wine and cinnamon are rich in anti-oxidants so I guess apart from the delicious taste, this drink would also be doing a lot of good to my system. While this is my favourite winter drink, I also add it often to my hot chocolate and coffee. I skip the sugar in my beverage and add the cinnamon powder instead.

Head Massage

My range of beauty products has a hair oil, which I do use, but many a times I like to mix a special blend for myself – coconut oil with a few drops of cinnamon. Smells gorgeous and works wonders for hair growth and clearing dandruff. I have been using this blend once a week for last seven months and am extremely happy with the results. Dandruff is much controlled and I see a lot of new hair growth!

Healing Oil

Cinnamon essential oil has potent anti-bacterial properties but it can also be harsh on the skin, if its usage is not carefully regulated. I love to add it in my face oil to keep acne at bay. Tea tree would be my safe choice but when the other ingredients are soothing enough to cool the fire of cinnamon without disturbing its efficacy, I prefer to work with the spice. That’s what I did for my Jhelum Loves Limited Edition Rejuvenator Face Oil – blended cinnamon with oils like myrrh, frankincense and sandalwood. I also put it in my body oil to balance the sacral chakra. The essential oil gives the blend a wonderful smell and makes the oil excellent for body massage, especially when trying to improve blood circulation and addressing aches and pains.

Mouth Freshner

I hate commercial mouth freshners, so I have developed a personal blend. In a 30ml spray bottle filled with brandy I mix and keep 1 drop cinnamon, 2 drops peppermint, 1 drop lemon, 1 drop vanilla and 1 drop clove essential oils. It’s a zesty mix and I simply love the flavor. It protects the teeth against bacterial attack and I feel it has also reduced my plaque buildup. Caution: Do not use essential oils for consumption unless you are sure of its purity.

Using just vanilla and cinnamon essential oils mixed with beeswax, I have also made myself a lip balm. It not only moisturises the lips but also works wonderfully as a lip plumper.

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