#1. Spicy food will help you live longer
Research published in the BMJ has confirmed what we have long been hoping for: Eating chili peppers may help you live longer.
The large scale study was carried out over seven years, and included approximately half a million people in China. They found that subjects who ate chili peppers at least once a week over the course of the study had a reduced general risk of death. They also faced a lower risk of death from certain diseases such as ischemic heart disease and some types of cancer.
The subjects provided the researchers from the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health with their dietary information, including how often they included vegetables, alcohol, red meat and spices in their meals. The main objective of the researchers was to find out if disease and mortality risk was in any way influenced by daily diet.
People who ate a spicy meal once or twice a week, the study found, had a mortality risk 10% lower than that of their non-spice eating counterparts.
It was also found that eating spicy foods even more regularly than twice a week reduced the overall risk of death even more, but at a diminishing rate.
The risk of dying for people who ate spicy foods 3 to 5 times a week stood at 14% less, same with those who included them in 6 to 7 meals a week.
And just as a reminder that alcohol is bad for your health, people who stayed alcohol-free throughout the study were shown to enjoy the most benefits.
When the researchers looked at the effect of spicy foods on deaths caused by specific diseases, they found that respiratory system diseases, ischemic heart disease and cancer were all reduced at a significant rate. The studies also showed that women enjoyed these benefits more than men, to all but remind us that nobody really cares about the male species; not even Mother Nature herself!
Chili pepper was the single spice that was used in the study, and different forms of it yielded different results.
Those who ate fresh chili stood a lower risk of dying from diabetes, ischemic heart disease and cancer.
In a nutshell, fresh chili is better than dried if you’re looking for something that does more than just burn your lips.
If adding a few more days to your life doesn’t seem enough for you, here are more health benefits that you may enjoy by eating spicy foods.
#2. Protects you against age-related eye defects
They sure don’t give peace to our eyes during chopping and eating, but chipotle peppers make up for that in the long run by depositing their active compounds lutein and zeaxanthin in the retinas to reduce the age-induced symptoms of cataracts and macular relapse.
#3. Chili peppers make you happy
No more spending too little on a bowl of Sriracha. Chili peppers happen to contain a component called capsaicin that stimulates the production of endorphin which reduces the feeling of pain.
One Mr. Ted Barrus has been consuming hot chilies for decades now, and according to his interview on “Good Morning America”, he’s not just about to stop the habit because it makes him “lightheaded and euphoric”. Chili peppers are not a drug, for those who may wish to know.
#4. Red peppers soothe your worn out muscles
Difficulty in recovering from sore muscles should never stop you from engaging in a morning workout routine because a red pepper-containing breakfast will fix it and prepare you for work. Again, it’s all thanks to the active nutrient capsaicin which distracts your mind from focusing on the pain sensations in your muscles.
It should be noted that too much red pepper doesn’t necessarily mean better results… and neither does too little; just let it burn to your penchant!
#5. Jalapeno peppers are a rich source of vitamin C
Your daily requirement of vitamin C is around 60 milligrams. A single orange will definitely provide an excess of that, but if you may opt to change your source of antioxidants, an ounce of chopped jalapeno peppers contains more than 40 milligrams. Meaning that one and half ounces will leave you set for the day!
#6. Improves your digestion
Kimchi is a Korean dish made of chili peppers and cabbage – a combination that supplies the body with the good bacteria, lactobacilli, which enhances the digestion process. The bacteria has also been shown by scientists to double up as a prevention against the development of yeast infections.
#7. Alleviates pain from arthritis
According to nutritionist Joy Bauer in an interview at “The Daily Show”, arthritis-induced pain can be highly reduced by chilies. In this, the spicier the pepper the better the results; you can choose to either consume a lot of red peppers, which, are less zesty, or include a soupcon of habanero peppers , which contain a greater proportion of the active compound, capsaicin, per unit volume.
#8. Natural weight loss remedies
More than one study has found that perked up food can lower your appetite for meals and make your body burn more calories. In one of the studies, a group of men and women were subjected to a meal containing pepper components for one month, while another group fed on placebo. The former, at the end of the study, were shown to have burned more fat than the latter, though in a marginal degree.
#9. Improves your performance in bed
Last but definitely not least, spicy foods can make you a better person in the sack, at least according to a 2011 report in the Food Research International journal. More than 50 men were subjected to doses of saffron and ginseng over a period of three months, and their new sexual performances assessed in terms of libido and sex duration. The improvement was palpable, according to the researchers, and the only worry was how much of the spices was optimum and beyond how much was too much!
What’s your favorite chili recipe? Let us know in the comments below!