Cinnamon Leaf Oil

Cinnamomum tamala in wild

  • Botanical Name:Cinnamomum tamala (Buch.-Ham.) Nees & Eberm.
  • Synonyms:Laurus tamala Buch.-Ham.,Cinnamomum cassia Blume, Laurus albiflora Wall.
  • Family:Lauraceae
  • Local Names:Tejpat, Dalchini
  • English Name:Cinnamon, Nepalese Cinnamon

Plant Description

Cinnamon is an evergreen tree about 15m high, bark dark brown, wrinkled. Leaves stalked, alternate or subopposite, ovate to oblong, long pointed, three veined, entire, glabrous, shiny above and pinkish when young. Yellowish stalked flowers bloom during April to May, and fruit appears as a drupe during December to February.

Cinnamon is distributed throughout Nepal within the altitudinal range of 450-2200m on moist slopes of forest land. Geographically distributed from Kashmir to Bhutan, Assam, Myanmar and native to Sri Lanka


Cinnamon leaf oil is extracted by steam distillation of the leaves and twigs of Cinnamomum tamala. Leaves contain about 2% of the essential oil.


Traditional uses: Bark and leaves are used as spices in curries, pickles, vegetables and meats. The ingredients are also exported from Nepal. Leaf and bark are extensively used to treat colic and diarrhoea. Cinnamon is used in variety of complaints such as cold, flu, digestive problems and menstrual problems, rheumatism etc.

Modern uses:

Cinnamon leaf oil is used as fragrance components in perfumes, industrial fragrances, cosmetic products, detergents and soaps etc. The oil is also used in flavouring foods especially alcoholic and soft drinks. The oil is also used in aromatherapy.

Key Actions:

Analgesic, Antibiotic, Antiseptic, Antiseptic, Astringent, Carminative, Digestive, Stomachic, Emmenagogue, Relaxant

Organoleptic Properties

  • Appearance:Fluid liquid
  • Colour:Golden yellow to brownish liquid
  • Aroma:Warm-Spicy, Camphoraceous odour

Physico-Chemical Properties

  • Specific gravity:0.881 to 0.944 at 25° C
  • Optical rotation:[-] 10.5° to [-] 20.5° at 25° C
  • Refractive index:1.4870 to 1.4975 at 25° C
  • Acid number:0.5 to 6.5
  • Ester number:Not less than 65
  • Ester number after acetylation:100 to 145
  • Solubility:Soluble in 0.4 to 2.5 vol. of 90% alcohol; turbid on addition of further alcohol

Active Constituents

Monoterpenoids (Linalol, 50%) is the major constituent of Cinnamon leaf oil. α-pinene, β-pinene, p-cymene and limonene ranges around 5-10% each. Others are cinnamaldehyde, eugenol and eugenol acetate, benzyl benzoate and safrole in traces.


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