Essential Oil Profile: Cinnamon (Bark)

by Amelia E. Hoard, RN

Common Name: Cinnamon (Bark)

Synonyms: Cinnamomum verum J. Presl.

Latin Binomial: Cinnamomum zeylanicum Blume

Family: Lauracea

Production Method: steam or water distillation with cohabitation

Countries of Origin: Native to Sri Lanka, India, and Southeast Asia

Typical Constituents: [E]-Cinnmaldehyde (63.1-75.7%), Eugenol (2.0-13.3%), [E]-Cinnamyl acetate (0.3-10.6%), Linalool (0.2-7.0%), b-Caryophyllene (1.3-5.8%), r-Cymene (1.7-2.5%), 1,8-Cineole (0.4-2.3%), Benzaldehyde (tr-2.2%), b-Phellandrene (<1.5%), a-Terpineol (0.4-1.4%), Camphor (tr-1.4%), Terpinen-4-ol (0.4-1.1%), Benzyl benzoate (tr-1.0%), a-Caryophyllene (0-1.0%), Safrole (0-0.04%)

Description of Oil: pale to brownish-yellow with a powerful diffusive, warm-spicy odor.

Description of Plant: A bushy evergreen tree up to 15 m. The bark and leaves are strongly aromatic.

History, Folklore and Myth: Used for several thousand years Eastern and Western cultures alike. Cinnamon and cassia are mentioned in the bible and ancient Egyptians were known to use cinnamon in mummification.

Properties and Uses: Anaesthetic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, aphrodisiac, astringent, cardiac, carminative, emmenagogue, insecticide, parasiticide, stimulant, stomachic.

Precautions and Contraindications: may inhibit blood clotting, skin sensitization, pregnancy, breastfeeding.

Other Interesting  Information: Current in British Herbal Pharmacopoeia as a specific for flatulent colic and dyspepsia with nausea.



Battaglia, Salvatore. The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy. Virginia, Queensland, Australia: The Perfect Potion. 1995.

Lawless, Julia. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils. Shaftesbury, Dorset. Element Books. 1995.

Tisserand, Robert, and Tony Balacs. Essential Oil Safety: A Guide for Health Care Professionals. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone. 1995.

Sellar, Wanda. The Directory of Essential Oils. London: Random House. 2005

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