Old cinnamon (Miconia albicans): what it is for and uses

The search for natural products to treat health problems has increased every day. The idea of ​​adhering to organic and less invasive therapeutic methods, such as teas, in general, appeals to several people who seek a healthier life.

There are several plants that have medicinal uses, such as ginger , devil’s claw, guaco and boldo that are already known in homemade recipes and the subject of different scientific researches.

Among this variety on the list, there is also the Cinnamon of old, plant grown mainly in the cerrado region and known for its analgesic and anti-inflammatory resources.

Keep reading and learn more about the product’s features and how to use it!


What is Old Cinnamon?

Old cinnamon is the popular and commercial name of Miconia albicans , a plant that has leaves with medicinal uses and is distributed mainly in regions with a tropical climate.

Its size can reach 3 meters in height and, in Brazil, the plant can be found distributed by several states, prevailing in the northeast region.

It is a plant generally used to control inflammation and joint pain, and is known for several properties, such as:

  • Analgesic – relieves pain;
  • Anti-inflammatory – fights inflammation;
  • Antioxidant – fights free radicals, that is, molecules capable of damaging healthy cells in the body;
  • Antimicrobial – inhibits the development of microorganisms such as bacteria and fungi;
  • Antimutagenic – protects cells against DNA damage;
  • Hepatoprotective – protects the liver’s function from toxins;
  • Digestive tonic – fights stomach and intestinal diseases.

It is worth mentioning that, despite the items listed, there are no scientific studies that prove the real effectiveness and attributes of the plant.

Due to its potential action, Cinnamon is recommended to combat joint diseases, such as arthrosis (cartilage wear) and arthritis (inflammation of the joints), as well as digestive system problems, such as gastritis .

Its most popular form of consumption is tea made from its leaves, but it can also be found in capsules, creams and in the drop version.

Many of the creams and liquids manufactured with the plant do not only present it as an asset, but also other components, such as plants, which also have therapeutic properties.

The use, in general, does not show side effects, but the dosage indicated on the packaging must be respected, because in excess consumption can cause damage to liver cells or other harms.

Properties of Old Cinnamon

There are 3 main compounds present in the leaf of old Cinnamon: flavonoids, ursolic acid and oleanolic acid. Together, they theoretically collaborate for the various actions presented by the plant, such as the anti-inflammatory and analgesic effect.

More specifically, the action of each substance is:


Flavonoids are phytochemicals, that is, substances present in foods of plant origin.

They have antioxidant action, fighting free radicals – molecules capable of damaging healthy cells in the body -, responsible for the premature aging of the organism.

In this way, they help to keep the body healthy, protecting it from damage.

Ursolic acid

Ursolic acid is a substance found in vegetables, mainly in its leaves and peels.

When consumed, it has several properties, such as anti-inflammatory, anti-tumor, anti-ulcer and anti-microbial activity.

Thus, it works by fighting inflammations that have developed in the body, in addition to helping to combat gastric problems, such as ulcers.

In addition, although it has not yet been scientifically proven, some studies indicate that ursolic acid can be beneficial in helping to control diabetes , improving the effects of insulin on sugar absorption.

Oleanolic acid

Oleanolic acid is a substance present in some fruits and vegetables, and has different characteristics such as: anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and analgesic action.

In conjunction with the other substances present in the Cinnamon of old, it works by relieving pain, especially in the region of the joints, and protecting the body from the action of free radicals.

What is old cinnamon for?

Old Cinnamon is a plant known to help relieve pain and promote the well-being of the body. It is generally indicated for people who suffer from joint problems.

Due to its phytotherapic properties, it is believed that the plant also acts in other different regions of the body, such as the digestive system, liver and skin, stimulating its better functioning and health.

It is worth mentioning again that there are no scientific studies that prove the effectiveness of Canela de Velho.

In 2014, the National Health Surveillance Agency (ANVISA) released a document in which it establishes the minimum requirements for the classification and commercialization of a herbal medicine.

In the document there is also a list of plant species that can not be used for the manufacture of herbal products, that is, they are prohibited, as they have potential health risks.

The Miconia albicans , the Cinnamon scientific nomenclature of old, not part of this list and thus it can be marketed as herbal or dietary supplement.

Taking into account all the above, it is believed that the Cinnamon of old serves to:

Combat joint problems

The best known action of Cinnamon is to relieve inflammation and pain caused by arthritis and osteoarthritis.

These pathologies affect the joints of the body, causing pain and stiffness in the joints and the wear and tear of the cartilage.

Due to its anti-inflammatory and analgesic action, it is believed that the Cinnamon of old acts by reducing the physical discomfort caused by the problem in the joints.

Relieve pain

The relief of discomfort is a characteristic of the Cinnamon of old. The plant has analgesic properties and, therefore, can be used in cases of pain in various parts of the body.

Along with the anti-inflammatory action, it is generally indicated to improve symptoms related to tendonitis, torticollis, back pain, fibromyalgia (generalized pain and weakness), bursitis (inflammation of the bursae that protect the joints), herniated discs (wear of the intervertebral discs) and twists in the feet.

Improve digestion

Popularly, it is believed that Old Cinnamon can be a good ally for the proper functioning of the digestive system. Some studies indicate that the plant has digestive tonic properties, that is, it facilitates the digestion of food.

Thus, the consumption of Cinnamon from old can help regulate bowel function, in addition to preventing and fighting problems such as heartburn , reflux, diarrhea and pain caused by gastritis.

In addition, another belief is that the plant has hepatoprotective properties. In this way, it would help to decrease the levels of accumulated fat in the liver, helping to prevent problems with poor digestion.

Prevent premature aging

The consumption of Cinnamon can help the body to prevent premature aging of cells. This is because, in its composition, there are compounds with antioxidant action, such as flavonoids.

These compounds are responsible for protecting the body from free radicals, that is, from molecules capable of damaging healthy cells in the body, which causes premature aging.

Stimulating good liver function

Due to the belief that there are hepatoprotective properties in the Cinnamon of old, it is believed that the plant helps to preserve the function of the liver.

In this way, it can help to reduce the levels of accumulated fat in the organ, in addition to protecting it from possible toxins that may come into contact with the organism.

It is worth mentioning that there are not enough studies to prove this action, being just a popular use.

Prevent the development of cancer

There are indications that the Cinnamon of old presents antimutagenic activities, that is, those that help to protect the normal cells of the body against mutations.

In this way, the plant can prevent the appearance of diseases such as cancer , which is formed precisely by mutations that transform normal cells into cancer cells.

Act as a sexual stimulant

There are some reports that relate Cinnamon to the sexual stimulating effects and, therefore, it is popularly used.

Despite the belief, there is also no scientific evidence about this action, being just an idea popularly disseminated.

Who has high blood pressure can take Cinnamon from old?

Currently, there are not enough studies available to conclude about the contraindications for the use of Cinnamon for people suffering from high blood pressure .

Thus, it is worth consulting a doctor, who will indicate the possibility of the patient making use of the product or not, according to the clinical picture.

Cinnamon tea for old people lose weight?

In general, no . The plant does not have any component that directly causes weight loss.

What can happen is that, due to its properties that have a tonic digestive action, for example, there is an improvement in the general functioning of the organism.

With this improvement, the digestive system is also affected, facilitating digestion and regulating its functioning.

Thus, there may be a reduction in body swelling, caused previously by the malfunction of the digestive tract, for example.

Despite this, the actual weight loss or gain resulting from the use of Cinnamon is not yet scientifically proven.

How to use?

There are several presentations and ways of using Canela de Viejo. From teas to creams, the plant can be applied in different situations, such as in cases of joint pain or combating premature aging, for example.

Among its varieties and forms of use are:


One of the best known presentations of Canela de Velho is tea. In general, to use this version it is simple: just take about 2 to 3 cups of the infusion a day . The drink can be prepared with different types of leaf: green, dry or dehydrated.

It is worth mentioning that it is not indicated to exceed the limit of 500mL daily of tea, since the therapeutic compounds present in the composition of the plant can cause damage to the liver when ingested in an exacerbated way.

In general, the first signs of pain improvement can be seen with 1 week of use. Despite this, it is recommended that the intake be made every day, for 15 to 30 days to achieve more satisfactory results.


The capsule version is a good option for people who don’t like the taste of the plant’s tea, but still want to get its benefits.

Usually the package comes with 60 or 120 capsules with a concentration of 500mg each. The indication for use, in general, is 1 capsule 2 times a day .

It is worth remembering that the dosage may vary according to the brand and concentration of the product, so it is important to follow the guidelines present in the package insert or package insert.

Gel or cream

Topical Cinnamon for topical use, that is, applied directly to the skin, is a variety of products made with the plant.

Its gel or cream version is ideal for massaging pain spots caused by torticollis – strong muscle contraction in the neck -, tendonitis – tendon inflammation -, sprains in the feet area, among others.

For administration, in general, just apply the product in the desired region and massage with gentle movements until the skin absorbs all the cream.

In drops (liquid)

The droplet version is generally a compound product, that is, in addition to Cinnamon of old, there are other compounds in its formulation, such as Chamomile, Lemongrass, Devil’s Claw , among other plants.

Similar to the other presentations, the composite version serves to relieve pain and promote well-being.

In general, the package accompanies 100mL of product and the dosage is 20 drops diluted in 1 glass of water . It is recommended to ingest after meals and before going to sleep, and the dose should be halved in the case of pediatric use.

It is worth mentioning that the dosage may vary according to the manufacturer and, therefore, it is important to follow the directions on the package or leaflet.


The presentation in old Cinnamon oil is similar to the cream and serves to be applied directly to the skin.

It is recommended for relaxing massages in areas of discomfort, in order to reduce local pain.

How to make cinnamon tea from old

The preparation of old Cinnamon tea is, in general, simple, since it only needs the leaves of the plant and water.

Like other teas, there is the possibility to infuse with green or dehydrated leaves, the most easily found form in markets.

The steps for each form of preparation are:


To make old cinnamon tea with green leaves, that is, freshly picked, just follow the steps:

  1. Add 1 liter of water to a kettle;
  2. Then add approximately 10 to 15 small sheets of Cinnamon from the old to the container;
  3. Bring to the fire and boil for 10 minutes;
  4. Turn off the heat and let cool;
  5. Strain and serve.

Dehydrated or dry

The preparation with dehydrated or dried leaves is a little different from that with green leaves. In this case, to perform the infusion, the steps are necessary:

  1. Put 1 liter of water to a boil;
  2. When it reaches a boil, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of dehydrated Cinnamon leaves;
  3. Boil for 1 more minute and turn off the heat;
  4. Let it drown for 10 minutes;
  5. Strain and serve.

What is the contraindication for Canela as an old man?

Currently, there is no knowledge about the existence of side effects or contraindications to the use of Cinnamon.

However, like other medicinal plants, if consumed in excess, the product can cause malaise and even intoxication.

Thus, it is always worth consuming moderately and following the recommendations of a doctor, who will indicate the best amount and correct use for each patient.

In addition, it is important to be aware of the origin of the product. This is because the old Cinnamon has a great capacity to absorb aluminum from the soil, a mineral often found in the environments in which the plant is grown.

In case the cultivation is not done correctly, aluminum can transfer in an exacerbated way to the plant, which, when consumed by humans, can cause harm to health.

Price and where to buy

The price of Cinnamon can vary depending on the geographic region, establishment of purchase and version of the product.

It can usually be found in health food stores and physical pharmacies and online, in its most diverse presentations.

If there is a need to compare prices and purchase the product, the Consulta Remédios platform can be used , which indicates the best prices in several pharmacies in each region.

In general, the prices for each presentation can be from:


Cinnamon for tea infusion can be made with three versions of the plant: green leaf, dry or dehydrated and its values ​​* vary according to the choice.

The green or dry leaves can be found in natural products houses and generally cost between R $ 8 to R $ 15 reais per 100g.

The dehydrated version, on the other hand, costs about R $ 7 to R $ 12 reais per 30g.

* Prices consulted in June 2020. Prices may change.


Some of the options of the capsule version and their respective initial values ​​* are:

  • Cinnamon from Velho Rei Terra 500mg, bottle with 120 capsules – R $ 34.90
  • Canela de Velho and Sucupira Ninho Verde 500mg, bottle with 60 capsules – R $ 29.90;
  • Old Nova Gerty Cinnamon 500mg, bottle with 60 capsules – R $ 23.90;

* Prices consulted in June 2020. Prices may change.

Gel or cream

Among the options for Canela de Velho creams and their prices * are:

  • Pierry Wermon Cinnamon Old Man Body Massage Cream 100g – R $ 8.02;
  • Massageadora Ointment Bio Instinto Canela de Velho 150g – R $ 9.99;
  • Bell Corpus Canela de Velho Massaging Ointment 150g – R $ 12.89.
  • Rhenuks Cinnamon Old Man Massage Gel 220g – 17.91.

* Prices consulted in June 2020. Prices may change.


One of the options of the presentation in drops of the plant and its approximate price * is:

  • Canela de Velho Fonte Verde Compound bottle with 100mL – R $ 23.92.

* Price consulted in June 2020. The value may change.


Among the options of Old Cinnamon oil and its price * is:

  • Old Katiguá Cinnamon Oil 30mL – R $ 33.16.

* Price consulted in June 2020. The value may change.

Little is known about the real benefits and results presented by the use of Cinnamon.

Currently, there are only assumptions related to the presence of flavonoids and acids in the plant, which can attribute potential analgesics and anti-inflammatory drugs.

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