Not only is cinnamon at the center of many baked goods, but can be found in the supplement aisle as well. How do cinnamon pills, powders, and other supplements stack up against cinnamon used in foods, and what is their risk for miscarriage?
Though it is recommended to avoid taking large amounts of cinnamon while pregnant, including using cinnamon supplements, pills, and cinnamon oil, there is no evidence to show cinnamon leads to miscarriage. Rather, using large amounts of cinnamon can have other health ramifications.
I will break down the science behind cinnamons effects during pregnancy, as well as potential limits for how much cinnamon is safe.
Can Cinnamon Cause a Miscarriage?
If you are a baker or even just a fan of this wintery and warming spice, then the chance is you have already read our article on cinnamon’s overall safety. As we discussed in that article, cinnamon is safe when eaten in moderation, such as in foods and drinks, but might be harmful if used in large amounts.
As with many other herbs and spices, many women wonder whether the safety cautions surrounding cinnamon mean that the spice can cause miscarriage.
There are rumors that taking large amounts of cinnamon is one way to induce either labor or miscarriage. Currently, there is no scientific evidence that cinnamon induces labor or miscarriage (source: CCRM Fertility). This goes for all forms of cinnamon, including pills, supplements/powder, and cinnamon oil.
Cinnamon tea also raises eyebrows, as it can be unclear how much cinnamon is in your cup of brew. However, most cinnamon-containing teas use cinnamon as part of a spice blend and so very little actual cinnamon makes it into your drink. For this reason, cinnamon teas are safe to drink during pregnancy.
Some women also wonder whether the type of cinnamon makes a difference. Cassia cinnamon contains a compound called coumarin, which can harm the liver when routinely used in large (greater than 6 grams daily) amounts (source: WebMD).
Though this is one reason to avoid taking large amounts of cinnamon, it is not related to miscarriage.
How Much Cinnamon Could Cause a Miscarriage?
Since cinnamon is not known to cause labor or miscarriage, is there even an upper limit to how much is safe?
The short answer is yes.
As I mentioned above, taking large amounts of cinnamon regularly can be harmful to your liver. These effects were seen when people took more than 6 grams of cinnamon on a regular basis (source: WebMD).
The 6-gram amount is more than would typically be found in foods. A single teaspoon of powdered cinnamon (like the stuff found on your spice rack) is just under 3 grams.
For this reason, it is recommended to limit cinnamon to the amounts typically found in foods. So although large amounts of cinnamon may not have any effect on uterine conditions or delivery, it is still safest for your overall health to avoid taking large amounts of the seasoning, both when pregnant and not.
When enjoyed in moderation and used in amounts typically found in foods, cinnamon keeps its place on the list of safe spices during pregnancy. Though they aren’t likely to lead to miscarriage, large amounts of cinnamon, cinnamon supplements, and cinnamon oil should be avoided.
Curious about the other spices in your kitchen cabinets? Check out these articles to learn more: