When asked to name the flavours of Christmas we automatically think of nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger, star anise and all the other rich, deeply scented spices that fill our festive foods, so when we were sent a new cinnamon flavoured drink to review we couldn’t help but get into the festive spirit just that little bit more.
Cinnamora is the latest drink to hit the soft drinks market. Promoted as having a ‘spice for life’ it is available in both still and sparkling versions, has no added sugar and contains just 2.75 calories (‘cos every fraction of a calorie counts, right?!)
But before we taste test it, let’s take a look at the health benefits of cinnamon:
We love any foods that contain a high level of antioxidants and cinnamon is right up there with the best of them. In fact, according to the ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) scale, which measures the concentration of antioxidants within foods, cinnamon ranks as number 7, pretty good eh? Antioxidants, as the name would suggest, fight oxidisation within the body and we love them because they are the little crime fighters raging a war against the aging process (hooray to that!) and smashing free radical damage to a pulp.
OK , so we don’t need to tell you that cinnamon doesn’t contain any sugar; it’s bark from a tree so of course it doesn’t! But it does have a naturally sweet taste to it, and this means it can be added to foods and drinks with the intention of lowering or replacing the sugar content. For example, cinnamon can be sprinkled over porridge instead of sugar and OK it doesn’t taste as sweet, but it certainly still has a degree of sweetness; a sweetness that is far better for you!
By using cinnamon you can reduce the amount of sugar you consume, which in turn lowers the glycemic load of your meals and helps to reduce insulin resistance. Insulin is a hormone made by the body that helps regulate blood sugar levels; it stops them from going too high (hyperglycemia) or too low (hypoglycemia). Studies have shown that sufferers of Type 2 diabetes, excess weight gain, metabolic syndrome, candida and those people experiencing low energy levels, supplementing your diet with cinnamon can help restabilise blood sugar levels and help reduce symptoms.
Cinnamon can also help increase the levels of good HDL (High Density Lipo-protein) cholesterol within the body, whilst also lowering the bad LDL (Low Density Lipo-protein) cholesterol. Cholesterol is a soft, waxy substance that is an essential substance in the body, producing important cell membranes, hormones, vitamin D and bile acids, which help the fat digestion process. What makes LDL the ‘bad’ cholesterol is that it attaches itself to the walls of our arteries, therefore increasing the risk of heart attack and strokes. HDL on the other hand, holds on tightly to its cholesterol, targeting it to all the important areas of the body and can even help scale away some of the build up that may already have developed.
Cinnamon isn’t going to solve all of your health problems, but adding a small amount to your diet can definitely help. It’s a very versatile ingredient and can be used in baking, stews, soups, breakfasts, in fact there’s not much you can’t put cinnamon in, as long as you like its distinctive taste. However, for those of us that are time poor and aren’t always able to make meals from scratch, or perhaps might buy meals and drinks on the go, Cinnamora offers the perfect solution for getting that healthy injection of cinnamon into the diet.
We’ve discovered why a cinnamon based drink may provide us with some pretty good health benefits, but ultimately it all boils down to taste, so let’s open up the can, take a good old slurp and check out…
How it Tastes!
Imagine gathering up the scent of Christmas and popping it in a can and this will give you a pretty fair idea of what Cinnamora tastes like. It smells like cinnamon apple pie; sweet, warming, spicy and absolutely spot on for this time of year.
And it tastes exactly as it smells!
Sweet cinnamon flavoured, but not too spicy, kind of like a liquid apple pie. I’m not going to lie, it’s not to everyone’s taste, for some it’s arguably too sweet tasting and if you don’t like cinnamon, well you’re just not going to get on with this at all. However, a chilled can makes a very refreshing change from other soft drinks out there and I’ve certainly not tasted anything like it before.
To sum up, Cinnamora is like drinking Christmas in a can and if you served it alongside a healthy mince pie then you’d be sure to make Santa a very happy man.
What else can I do with it?
It’s a delicious drink in it’s own right, but just for fun we came up with a few ideas of how else you could use it.
- Use it as a mixer with your favourite spirit – how about Cinnamora mixed with dark rum or vodka?
- Warm it up, garnish with a slice of lemon and a cinnamon stick and et voilà an alco free alternative to mulled wine.
- How about inventing some Cinnamon cocktails? A Cinnamopolitan anyone?
- Or how about using it to make up your bowl of porridge in the morning?
We’d love to hear what you think about Cinnamora, so please get in touch!
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