8 Benefits and Uses of Cassia Oil | Nikura

8 min read / 28 March 2024 / yasmin sharp

8 Benefits and Uses of Cassia Oil

Explore the remarkable health and wellness benefits of cassia oil, from easing PMS symptoms to boosting circulation and reducing stress.


Cassia essential oil is an important member of the cinnamon family, hailing from the bark of the cassia tree, which is native to China and Burma.

It is considered to be one of the top 50 most important herbs in traditional Chinese medicine and continues to be used to treat a wide range of low-level conditions.

The oil is also on the rise within aromatherapeutic circles, with its festive-like scent offering support for moments of stress and anxiety, whilst also proclaiming to improve digestion, menstrual symptoms and blood circulation.

We take a closer look at the benefits of cassia oil, some of the health claims made about it, how you can use the oil and much more.

What is cassia oil?

Cassia essential oil – which is also known by its botanical name Cinnamomum Cassia, is native to China and is extracted via steam distillation from the bark, twigs and leaves of the cassia tree.

It has been given the nickname ‘Chinese cinnamon’ due to its place of origin and because it has maintained a position of prominence in Chinese medicine for thousands of years.

Yellowish-brown in colour, the oil offers a variety of health benefits, with its ability to aid digestion perhaps the most widely known.

How does cassia oil work?

Cassia oil works in different ways depending on the method of application.

For example, when diffused, the oil’s warm scent helps some people to relax and find a moment of calm, which can make all the difference to stress and anxiety levels.

The oil contains anti-inflammatory properties, which could prove useful in dealing with arthritis and similar pain and swelling conditions.

Adding the oil to bath water allows it to naturally soak into the skin which can help to revitalise and refresh its appearance.

What are the benefits of cassia oil?

Some of the benefits of cassia essential oil allow it to be used to:

1. Help manage PMS symptoms

One of the most prominent benefits of cassia oil is its emmenagogue properties, which enable it to stimulate menstrual flow, helping to open obstructed menstrual paths.

These obstructions are often responsible for causing cramp pain, with cassia oil possessing the potential to provide necessary relief, whilst helping to keep your cycle more regular.

Cassia oil can also be used to ease headache severity and muscle aches that can affect the body due to PMS.

One study found that the properties of cassia essential oil provided antinociceptive (the blocking of pain detection) and anti-inflammatory benefits, further underlining its potential for the relief of PMS symptoms.

2. Treat and calm diarrhoea

It is believed that cassia oil can work as a powerful anti-diarrhoea agent, as by binding the bowels it can limit diarrhoea episodes and reduce the loss of excess nutrients from the body.

Cassia oil is regularly used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat diarrhoea, as it is believed that the condition is mostly caused by spleen deficiency.

In 2019, researchers took a closer look at these navel therapy claims and concluded that it could provide one of the best methods of dealing with chronic diarrhoea, especially for children.

However, more research is needed to provide clear-cut evidence about these benefits.

3. Boost and improve circulation

One of the most common uses of cassia oil is as a circulatory booster, as the oil creates a strong feeling of warmth through the body following topical or aromatherapeutic application.

This boost in circulation can help the body as a whole by ensuring the correct amount of oxygen and nutrients can move through the body to the required areas.

Poor circulation can often be a root cause of muscle aches, so in combination with cassia oil’s anti-inflammatory properties, topical application can provide relief for sore muscles.

Although there is no scientific evidence to back up this claim, some have theorised that cassia oil’s circulation-boosting benefits could lower the risk of serious health conditions such as strokes and heart attacks.

4. Improve hair and skin conditions

Cassia oil benefits the skin and hair in different ways because it can work as an astringent to improve its look and feel.

A diluted topical solution of cassia essential oil can provide more protection for the skin whilst also giving it a brighter, rejuvenated appearance.

People also include it as a hair mask ingredient, using it to naturally strengthen hair roots, with the aim of making their hair thicker and softer.

One of the lesser-known benefits of cassia oil is its ability to combat coughs, as its natural properties may shrink mucous membranes and relieve congestion in the chest.

5. Offer relief for diabetics

Cassia has featured in several human studies focusing on subjects with and without type 2 diabetes, producing some promising results.

Many have noted that after several months of using cassia, participants in the study experienced significant reductions in fasting blood sugar levels.

In most of these studies, people were given around 1-6 grams of cassia per day, whilst also producing little to no side effects.

More research is needed in this area, but the early signs are that cassia could have the potential to be used as a natural blood sugar lowering anti-diabetic solution.

6. Lower arthritic pain and inflammation

According to a 2023 study, 15% of people aged 30 and older experience osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis.  

It is also believed that by 2050, nearly 1 billion people in the world will be living with osteoarthritis.

Although there is no long-term, effective cure for osteoarthritis, early intervention and prevention are often the most important parts of treating the condition.

Researchers observed that a compound called cinnamaldehyde was present in cassia oil that was able to activate anti-inflammatory mediators whilst inhibiting inflammatory mediators.

Research is ongoing, but early results appear to indicate that cassia oil could prove useful in the management of arthritic inflammation and pain.

7. Provide anti-stress and anxiety relief

Another common use of cassia oil is as a natural antidepressant, helping people to find a sense of calm and relief after inhaling its scent.

The cinnamaldehyde compound has also been observed as expressing antidepressant-like effects in stressed mid-aged rats.

Human studies are yet to be conducted, so it is difficult to tell if these benefits can be translated into practical use.

Inhaling or diffusing cassia essential oil may help to ease nerves and give your body more chance to function properly, offering more clarity and calming unexpected emotional spikes.

8. Act as a natural bug repellent

The likes of lavender, citronella, peppermint and thyme oil have long been recognised for their bug repellent abilities and it appears that cassia is another that can be added to that list.

Researchers tested the efficacy of cassia oil against yellow fever mosquitos and discovered some interesting results.

A 30-minute indoor test involving 4 people saw them experience 94% protection. After 50 minutes the protection level dropped to 83% and when extended to 70 minutes, the oil still provided 61% protection.

Although more research is needed, this indicates that cassia oil could be used as an effective mosquito repellent, and perhaps as a natural alternative to chemical-based products.

How do you use cassia oil?

Cassia oil uses a fantastic blend of natural properties to help people treat a host of ailments and conditions.

Some of the most common uses of cassia oil include:

An aromatherapeutic bath mixture

To enjoy some cassia oil benefits on your skin, you could add 2-4 drops to warm bathwater which can help calm the body and mind.

The oil’s natural anti-inflammatory properties make it ideal for soothing sore muscles and it could also give your circulation a little boost.

Always dilute essential oils before adding to bathwater or onto your skin, and first-time users should complete a patch test to ensure compatibility.

An aromatherapy diffusion treatment

Diffusing cassia essential oil can create a relaxing atmosphere, with its warm and spicy aroma adding a sense of comfort, particularly during the colder months of the year.

Simply mix 5-7 drops of cassia oil with water and add to an oil burner or diffuser and let the scent slowly drift into your sensory space.

Another option could be to inhale directly from the bottle, or to add 1-2 drops to a handkerchief and inhale on the go.

What is the history of cassia oil?

Uses of cassia oil are believed to date as far back as the Old Testament, with its powerful scent and calming properties helping people across thousands of years of civilisation.

There are also theories that cassia was one of the chosen oils used in the mummification process performed by the Ancient Egyptians after death.

Many view cassia as a true-health oil, much like its cinnamon-scented cousin, as its natural properties allow it to be used in an array of medical applications.

Cassia Oil FAQs

What are the risks of using cassia essential oil?

Whilst the cinnamon spice is used in culinary dishes, cassia essential oil should not be consumed as it is intended for aromatherapeutic and topical applications.

Ingesting the oil – or any essential oil – could cause serious health issues, as it is highly concentrated and can prove toxic in some cases.

What does cassia oil smell like?

Cassia essential oil has a warm, sweet and spicy scent that is very reminiscent of the traditional cinnamon smell.

This is why it is often used during winter and colder periods, as diffusing the oil can create a comforting and welcoming environment that is good for mental health.

What is cassia oil good for?

There are lots of cassia oil benefits to enjoy, such as helping to ease PMS symptoms, easing stressful and anxious thoughts and working as an anti-inflammatory agent.

Some people use it to improve the condition of their skin and hair, whilst it is also believed that cassia oil could work as an effective anti-diarrhoea solution.

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Medical Disclaimer

The content in this article is for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended to take the place of medical advice. Please consult your personal physician for any advice or treatment regarding specific health questions. Neither the article editor, writer, nor the organisation of Nikura takes any responsibility for possible health consequences following the information given in any article. All readers should consult their physician before taking any advice given within these articles.

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