Answer: In one pilot study in the journal Fertility and Sterility, oral cinnamon extract taken for eight weeks was shown to improve the insulin sensitivity of polycystic ovary syndrome, a disorder that can be an obstacle to fertility for some women.
More Info: Polycystic ovary syndrome is a disorder that can cause irregular menstruation, an excess of male hormones, and cysts on the outer edge of the ovaries. It is the most common hormonal disorder among women affecting 5-10% of the childbearing population. Women who suffer from POS may have trouble becoming pregnant due to irregular menstruation and infrequent ovulation.
The pilot study in the journal of Fertility and Sterility set out to test the effect of cinnamon extract on insulin resistance parameters. After eight weeks, the placebo group demonstrated no change while those taking cinnamon extract showed a significant decrease in mean fasting glucose while the Matsuda insulin index increased.
Fact: Studies have demonstrated that cinnamon may help to manage blood sugar levels and improve insulin function. Study participants with Type 2 diabetes that ingested up to 6 g of cinnamon per day all experienced lower LDL cholesterol, triglycerides, mean fasting serum glucose, and overall cholesterol levels.
See Also: Cinnamon for Fertility Myth or Reality?
Wang, J.G., Anderson, R.A., Graham, G.M. 3rd, Chu, M.C., Sauer, M.V., Guarnaccia, M.M., and Lobo, R.A. 2007. The effect of cinnamon extract on insulin resistance parameters in polycystic ovary syncrome: a pilot study. Fertility and Sterility. 88(1):240-243.
“New Study Shows Cinnamon Extract Lowers Blood Sugar Levels In People With Type 2 Diabetes.” Medical News Today: Health News. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 Sept. 2010. http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/46243.php.
“Polycystic ovary syndrome – MayoClinic.com.” Mayo Clinic medical information and tools for healthy living – MayoClinic.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 Sept. 2010. http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/polycystic-ovary-syndrome/DS00423.
Bliss, Rosalie Marion. “Insulin Imitators: Polyphenols Found in Cinnamon Mimic Job of Hormone.” ARS : Home. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 Sept. 2010. http://www.ars.usda.gov/is/ar/archive/apr04/cinnam0404.htm.
Khan, MS, PHD, Alam , Mahpara Safdar, MS, Mohammad Muzaffar Ali Khan, MS, PHD, Khan Nawaz Khattak, MS, and Richard A. Anderson, PHD. “Cinnamon Improves Glucose and Lipids of People With Type 2 Diabetes .” Diabetes Care 26.12 (2003): 3215-3218. Print.