Does Cinnamon Tea Break A Fast?

Cinnamon tea is a popular alternative to typical green and black tea owing to its beneficial effects on blood sugar levels. There is the question of whether consuming cinnamon tea will break your fast; well, under certain circumstances, it will.

Let’s explore what we know about cinnamon tea and how it might affect your fast.

Are There Calories In Cinnamon Tea?

Cinnamon is actually not zero calorie as many people think. In fact, a teaspoon of ground cinnamon has just over 6 calories, which can quickly add up depending on how much you use.

Cinnamon nutritional facts

While the calories in cinnamon tea are minimal, they can still break a fast if you’re consuming enough of the spice. For example, if you were to add two teaspoons of cinnamon to your tea, that would be over 12 calories, which would break your fast.

Then, there’s the fact that many people end up taking their cinnamon brew with milk and sugar, both of which are calorie-dense and will positively break your fast.

Will Cinnamon Tea Raise Blood Glucose Or Insulin Levels?

Looking at cinnamon based strictly on its macronutrient content, it is fair to assume that it would raise blood sugar levels. After all, it is composed of almost entirely carbohydrates.

Close up inside cup of cinnamon tea

While this is technically true, the effect that cinnamon has on lowering blood sugar is actually quite significant and well-established.

But- it is important to realize that the blood sugar lowering action happens AFTER glucose enters the blood. It does not prevent sugar from entering the bloodstream and thus, is a contributor to blood glucose levels.

Will Cinnamon Tea Affect Autophagy?

There is some evidence that cinnamon tea may stop autophagy. One study showed that cinnamon extract inhibited the degradation of proteins in cells, which is an indicator of autophagy. 

However, other studies have shown conflicting results, so it is not yet clear if cinnamon tea does in fact stop autophagy. One study even indicated that active constituents found in cinnamon, known as cinnamaldehydes, can enhance the process, but in stomach cancer cells.

Nevertheless, there are several possible mechanisms by which cinnamon could inhibit autophagy. For example, cinnamon may reduce the number of free radicals (and oxidation) in cells, which can promote autophagy.

Additionally, cinnamon has been shown to suppress inflammation, which is also thought to play a role in autophagy.

Can I Use Cinnamon Tea on Fasting Days?

Woman drinking cinnamon tea

You can have your cinnamon tea on fasting days, but it is not friendly during the actual fast. The introduction of carbs and calories breaks your fast, regardless of your reason for following.

With that said, if you are fasting as a way to improve your overall health, cinnamon tea taken without additives is extremely helpful and will not offset the health benefits of your fast- just don’t take it during the actual fast.

Final Words

Cinnamon tea is a great way to spice up your cup of tea and add some additional health benefits. However, it is not zero calorie and contains enough carbs to break a fast.

If you are fasting for weight loss or another reason that requires you to stay in a fasted state, it is best to avoid cinnamon tea during the fast, but it can be a great addition to your diet during non-fasting hours.

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Mike Julom, ACE CPT

Mike is an ACE Certified PT and a CrossFit Level 1 Trainer. He is an avid lover of all sports. Basketball, tennis, athletics, volleyball, soccer, squash, golf, table tennis, even darts, you name it! He's a very active CrossFit athlete and has been WOD'ing for over 7 years. With such an intense fitness regime, Mike has learned to take care of his body physically, nutritionally, and spiritually. Mike founded ThisIsWhyImFit as a way to share his vast knowledge of exercises, diets, and general fitness advice.

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