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Surprising Health Benefits of Spicy Food Supported by Science

Updated on April 8th, 2020
Benefits Of Spicy Food

Ever been to a food joint that offers specifically spicy food?

Sure, you must have. And when you go, you always see someone sitting in the corner, sweat dripping down his face as he tries to recover grilled chicken drenched in a burning-hot ghost chili pepper sauce?

You might wonder, why does he do it?

Or, what’s the point of going yourself through that kind of uneasiness? Spicy food lovers will tell you that they’re addicted to sensation and flavor and, we believe there’s something else attracting them to it: the fact that it’s incredibly safe for you.

No pain, no gain

Well, that old saying ‘no pain, no gain’ has never seemed more timely. Hold on tight, and we’ll tell you all about the good things that fiery foods can do for you!

1. It helps you burn calories

burn calories
Image:shutterstock

It turns out that all of that panting you do while eating spicy foods serves a real purpose. According to a New York Times study, eating a tasty platter of diet increases the rate by which your body burns calories by nearly 9%.

Reconsider adding spicy foods to your diet!

To put it, dealing with all of that spice makes your metabolism work faster. Other research groups have found that people who consume spicy appetizers(1) consume fewer calories when their main course comes in. So, if you’re planning to lose a few pounds, you might want to reconsider adding spicy foods to your diet!

2. It protects your heart

Various studies have shown that people in countries with tangy diets tend to have far fewer heart problems than those in areas with a more mild selection of foods!

Combats inflammation

The reason? Consuming chili peppers seems to reduce the effects of LDL, also known as bad cholesterol. Additionally, capsaicin, the substance responsible for the fiery effect that spicy foods create in your stomach and mouth, helps to combat inflammation (which is one of the things that can lead to a cardiac arrest).

3. It can relieve your pain

This one gets a bit sophisticated in terms of the scientific explanation. Still, to put it, capsaicin can restrain specific signals sent from your nerve cells to your brain, weakening any sensation of pain you might be feeling. This is why capsaicin is regularly used as an ingredient in pain-relief patches and creams – the burning sensation works to remove pain at its source.

4. It will keep you alive longer

alive longer
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An extensive Chinese study (involving nearly 500,001 people) found that those who eat spicy foods daily may lower their likelihood of death by 15%.

The results do look promising

The folks who conducted the study say it’s too premature to link spicy foods to an increased lifespan directly, but the results do look promising. With all their health benefits, spicy foods have, it isn’t surprising that consuming them frequently might add a couple of years to your life.

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5. It is chock full of nutrients

Consuming chilies regularly will make it far more comfortable for you to meet your daily recommended intake of several nutrients. These include several vitamins, like C and A, as well as a couple of other vital minerals.

[Read: Benefits of Yellow Peppers: A Powerhouse of Nutrients]

6. It can make you happier!

Eating tangy foods causes your brain to produce ‘happy’ hormones, like serotonin, which makes you better equipped to deal with anxiety, depression, stress, and anger. This might explain why people eating super spicy foods always look so happy, even when they’re sweating buckets and crying from the pain!

7. It might stave off cancer

stave off cancer
Image:ShutterStock

According to some medical practitioners, and the latest research, capsaicin has the same effect on specific cancer cells as powerful cancer-fighting drugs do.

Kills off leukemic cells

The substance is so powerful that it can kill off leukemic cells and obstruct the growth of dangerous tumors. With that in mind,  we all can buy a jar of the spiciest hot sauce we can find and pour it on everything we consume

[Read: Cure Cancer with Natural Treatments]

8. It might make your stomachache feel better

What!? Can spicy foods calm your stomach? That’s right. A new study indicates that consuming spicy foods can lower the amount of gastric acid you produce, reduce stomach bleeding, and cut your risk of acquiring a peptic ulcer(2) by 54%. That’s not a bad idea for gulping some chili peppers!

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