This common spice is likely sitting in your cupboard right now, but do you know how healthy of a punch it packs?
Cayenne pepper, also referred to as capsicum, has been used for culinary and health purposes for centuries. It’s grown all over the world and is readily available at nearly every grocery store.
It first sprouted in Central and South America, but many cultures have found medicinal uses for it. Cayenne was a staple in Native American medicine. Traditional Chinese and Ayurvedic practitioners started using it to treat circulatory and appetite problems, according to MedicalNewsToday.com.
So, how can you use it to your benefit now? From cold relief to digestion improvement, here are a few of the many benefits of cayenne pepper.
Reduce Arthritis Pain
Cayenne is anti-inflammatory, which activates sensory nerves that relieve pain for people with arthritis. It also helps reduce nerve pain related to diabetes and psoriasis, according to WebMD.com.
Beans take on a whole new dimension when cayenne is added to them. So will your arthritis!
Kick a Cold
If you’re suffering from a cold, keep your medicine in the cabinet and cook up a meal with a dash of cayenne.
When ingested, this spice is able to break up and move congested mucus allowing it to process through the body and then out. The more the mucus breaks up and moves out, the better you’ll feel.
A little dash of cayenne pepper in hot soup will do wonders for kicking a cold to the curb.
Gastrointestinal issues can affect every area of your life. Although it is spicy, cayenne pepper can heal your stomach. This powerful spice helps stimulate the digestive tract. It increases the flow of gastric juices and improves enzyme production. It also stimulates saliva, which is a key aspect of digestion and makes it easier for your body to metabolize toxins.
Cayenne is sure to heat up any vegetable healthy sauté.
Burn More Calories
A study published in Physiology and Behavior found that eating a teaspoon of cayenne with your meal helps you burn more calories after eating. While the number is minial—10 calories after four hours—it’s worth adding a dash here or there for a little extra burn.
It’s not surprising that this hot spice raises your body temperature. When it does, your blood vessels instantly become dilated. This allows circulation to flow better through your body, which is why people say it’s an aphrodisiac.
This improved circulation also increases your body’s natural ability to detox. This is why cayenne pepper is popular for cleansing and detox regimens. If you’ve heard of the Master Cleanse, you’ll know cayenne is a main component of it.
Cayenne pepper also thins your blood, helps to remove toxins and rebuilds cells. Studies have also found that it reduces hypertension.
Combined with lemon juice and honey, cayenne tea is an excellent morning beverage for total body detox.
Capsaicin, a compound in significant amounts found in cayenne, helps stimulate cancer cells to kill themselves. This process, called apoptosis, helps to effectively fight disease, according to this study.
Cayenne and lemon juice make great complements to cooked bitter greens such as collards, kale, and mustard greens.
Warm Your Feet
Thanks to its thermogenic properties, a sprinkle of this spice in your shoes and socks effectively prevents frostbite in extreme winter weather. For winter campers and hikers this is a cheap, lightweight way to stay safe and warm on the snowy mountainside.
For some, cayenne may be too spicy to have all the time. However, even a small amount here and there can provide benefits for your heart, digestive system, and more. So, next time you’re making a chicken rub or vegetable soup, toss in a pinch or two.
By: Joe Barton
Joe is the founder of Barton Publishing, Inc., a leading natural health company specializing in publishing cutting edge reports that show people how to cure and treat themselves using safe, natural, and proven remedies. He is also a contributing writer, helping thousands of people who suffer from acid reflux, diabetes, high blood pressure, gout, and 20+ other disease and ailments enjoy healthier lives.