Cinnamon for better health

Yes, delicious cinnamon may be useful to our body

Cinnamon as a spice is derived from the bark of the tree, which in 2 years is being peeled and then dried until a fine parchment is formed. Wound on rolls,it is commercially sold and crushed to a fine powder. Home of the cinnamon tree are the humid tropical forests of Southeast Asia. Ceylon cinnamon is found in Sri Lanka, India, Miami, mandarin is grown in China, Vietnam and Indonesia.


Cinnamon had been introduced to Europe in 1505 when the Portuguese arrived in Ceylon and learnt how to produce it . Cinnamon tree is actually a family of Laurel . It reaches a height of 18 m. The bark is light brown . The flowers are pale yellow and form a kind of clusters . Secret yield of cinnamon had been guarded carefully by traders . Therefore, its price had been too high. Portuguese had learnt also how to produce aromatic plant. Each tseylonets over the age of 12 had to deliver annually 18 kg cinnamon bark , as the figure increases annually . Meanwhile, Amsterdam is being buried in mountains of cinnamon when prices fall . The first plantations of cinnamon appeared in VIII century in the tropics and subtropics of Asia. Today it is being cultivated in Africa, South America and Australia.


Positive health effects

It has anti-oxidant effect.When being consumed n small quantities ,cinnamon oil stimulates blood circulation and nutrition of the cells of aging skin , improves blood flow to the hair roots, strengthens teeth . The aroma of cinnamon improves digestion . Curative effects of cinnamon in the diet are especially useful for :

 hypothermia ;
 colds ;
diseases of the joints ;
spine ;
strengthens the immune system;
helps to overcome fatigue ;
with depression;
weakness ;
has a preventive role against disease;
helps to lower blood sugar , which is recommended for people suffering from diabetes.

Side Effects

In some people occurs  an increase in appetite. Pregnant women should be especially careful with the use of cinnamon in high doses as it acts as a uterine stimulant,but it is safe when used moderately. Oil should be avoided entirely.


Cinnamon and sports nutrition

Adding a coffee spoon of cinnamon to desserts can prevent the rise in blood sugar levels after meals.

Himeji Castle, Japan

The Himeji Castle is located in Himeji City in the western Hyogo. It was constructed in the mid-14th century, and after a three-layer castle tower was built by the order of the man of power Toyotomi Hideyoshi in the 16th century, Ikeda Terumasa, a feudal lord of the castle rebuilt it further in the 17th century. Its figure was likened as a white heron spreading its wings, and thus called the Hakuro-jo, or White Heron Castle. It was designated as a national treasure in 1931, and as the World Cultural Heritage in 1993.

The Tenshukaku (castle tower) is the main structure and has 5 stories in appearance but 6 stories inside and a first basement. All structures are covered with white plaster unique to Japan. The roofs are covered with kawara tiles and white plaster is applied to the joints. The sturdy, magnificent structure and elegant appearance, as well as complex and tactical defense devices make the Himeji Castle the most prominent castle in Japan.

The Castle hosts the Himeji Castle Cherry Blossom Viewing Fair, cherry blossom viewing drum music performance and Princess Sen-hime Peony Festival in spring, Himeji Castle Festival in summer, Moon Viewing Fair and Himeji All Japan Ceramics Market in autumn. Visitors never cease throughout the year. In the surrounding areas, there are a Japanese garden Koko-en, an affinity with the Castle, Otokoyama Sen-hime Tenmangu Shrine and Hyogo Prefectural Museum of History.
Engyoji Temple,Mt.Shosha,to the northwest from the castle was founded more than 1000 years ago.Hollywood movie “The Last Samurai”(2003)was shot here.

Restoration of Himeji Castle Main Keep<2009-2015>
After a lapse of more than 45 years since the major restoration in 1950’s -1960’s,Himeji Castle is undergoing a full-scale restoration.This five-year project is focusing on re-plastering damaged and grimy plaster walls and replacing the roofing tiles on the main keep.During the renovation work,it is covered by a roofed scaffold structure,but Himeji Castle is not only the main keep.Visitors can enjoy more than 70 buildings designated as Important Cultural Properties of Japan as well as many interesting devices intended for attackers on the way to the main keep.
For about three years from March 26,2011,you can go up to the top floor of the roofed scaffold structure by the elevators and get a look at the repair process and also enjoy a magnificent panoramic view from a height of 50 meters above the ground.
The scaffolding will be removed by spring 2015.




Ramanathaswamy Temple, India

The temple of Ramanathaswamy is located to the southern end of the Indian Peninsula on an island called Rameshwaram. The island sanctified by the footprints of lord Rama stands proud of the Ramanathaswamy Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva whose worshipable deity was Lord Rama himself. The popular temple lies next to the sea of bay of Bengal. Believed to have been built around 12th century there have been many addition so far. The temple area covers an area of 15 acres of land.

Legends opined that the Siva-Linga in the Ramanathaswamy Temple was installed by Lord Rama on his return from the Island of Lanka after killing Ravana. Lord Rama wanted to absolve himself of the sins of killing the Lanka King Ravana, who was a Brahmin by birth. Lord Rama sent Hanuman to Mount Kailasha to bring the Linga. When Hanuman was late Sita made a Linga out of sands with her hand . Thus,the Linga came in to existence and came to be known as Rama -Linga.

Temple Architecture

There is a deity of Hanuman placed on the main entrance seen trying to remove the sand Rama -Linga. The Temple has a long corridors with large sculptured pillars that are designed with intricate carvings. The corridors are the longest temple corridor in India. The corridor is 9m high and 21 feet wide. The Ramanathaswamy temple contains a total of about 1212 pillars in the north and south corridors. There is the huge bull Nandi, the carrier of lord Shiva towards the east entrance. The sculpture is 5 meter long and 3 m high.

As one goes to the interior of the temple there can be seen the Ramanathaswamy Siva shrine. In the principal sanctum or the altar , there is placed the Linga of Sri Ramanatha. The Vishwa- Linga installed by Hanuman rests to the right of the Ramatha- Linga on a different altar . The Shrine of Parvathavardhini, the consort of Sri Ramantha is to the left side of the linga. There is also a shrine dedicated to Lord Vishnu called Setu Madhava.

There are to be found 22 teerthams or tanks in the temple where pilgrims traditionally bath before offering puja to the deities. Some of the important tanks are Mahalakshmi, the tank of wealth, Gayatri, tank to get rid of Curse and Setu Madhava to get the blessing of Lakshmideva. The Surya tank is famous for acquiring knowledge of the past, present and future.

Daily Chores in the Temple

Six worship services are carried out each day, the first being at 5am and it continues till the dark evenings. Special pujas are offered to the deity with great festivity every Friday. The whole day sees the temple surrounded by a large population of devotees.Non Hindus are not allowed inside the inner Sanctum.


Lord Rama is worshiped in the month of Aani or June and July according to the English calender. Two annual Bhrammotsavams are celebrated in the month of Aadi and in Maasi. Other festival held in the temple premises are Adi Thirukalyanam in June, Mahalaya Amavasai in September, Ramalingam Prathastai Mayand Navarathri Festival in October.




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