Author: Rositsa Tashkova, Master of Molecular Biology and Microbiology
Many people never miss the opportunity to add something hot to their meal. There is some thrill in checking how hot you can bear. It is no coincidence that the participants in the hot-pepper contests face this challenge.
Mike Jack is a multiple world record holder in the category. The record for the fastest eating of three hot peppers Carolina Reaper, which he set, has not been broken for six years - the Canadian achieved it in just 9.72 seconds! [ref.1]
The secret ingredient of chillies
Chillies owe their effect to a compound called capsaicin, which can help control inflammation and other harmful processes in the body associated with the accumulation of fatty plaques in the arteries (atherosclerosis), for example. In this article you will find out what other positive health effects they have.
In addition, several preclinical studies have shown that capsaicin can suppress different types of cancer in humans by generating reactive oxygen species and increasing apoptosis (programmed cell death - in this case - of cancer cells).
Cardiovascular system benefits from chili peppers
The researchers analyzed the diets and health records of more than 22,000 people living in southern Italy and tracked them for eight years. Those on whose ate hot peppers more than four times a week were more protected from death from heart disease than those who rarely or never ate hot peppers.
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It is accepted that much of the effect is based on stimulation of the TRPV1 receptor, and it is believed that it plays an important role in regulating the metabolic health of the body, including body weight, glucose and lipid metabolism and cardiovascular system.
A 2017 overview describes the different mechanisms by which capsaicin can help lose weight. [ref.3]
Read more: Obesity
According to several small studies, local application of capsaicin or spraying it into the nose in the form of a specially developed spray can relieve migraines or other causes of headaches. [ref.4, ref.5]
There is evidence that other hot foods and spices, such as ginger, have a similar effect. [ref.6]
Migraines are thought to be a neurovascular disorder - its mechanisms appear to start in the brain and then spread to blood vessels. At the same time, spicy food has a dilating effect on blood vessels.
There are not many effective methods for dealing with the problem, but according to some studies, non-allergic rhinitis can be well influenced by a nasal spray with capsaicin. Exceptions are rhinitis due to old age or due to smoking. [ref.7]
Capsaicin may relieve arthritis pain
Capsaicin is an essential ingredient in many warming creams designed to relieve joint pain in arthritis and osteoarthritis. Some studies confirm the effectiveness of this agent in moderate pain and regular administration. [ref.8]
Anti-cancer activities of capsaicin
In recent years, various studies have focused on the potential impact of capsaikin on tumorogenesis (tumor formation), examining both the anti-carcinogenic and carcinogenic action of capsaicin.
But according to some studies, under certain circumstances capsaicin may have the potential to favor the formation of tumors, and therefore it is very important to approach with caution, if other such factors are available. [ref.9]
It seems that chillies are not only exciting and delicious, but also have a number of benefits for our health. Therefore, it is worth including them in our menu, and if this is already a fact, now the delight will be even greater. Enjoy your meal! :)
The short answer is: No. Hot pepper seeds are not hot by themselves. The hottest part of the pepper is the whitish pulp, called the placenta, to which the seeds are attached. If you want to reduce the hotness of the pepper, you need to remove this part, and with it the seeds fall off as well.
Is it harmful to consume spicy food during pregnancy?
What are the hottest chili peppers in the world?
The hottest pepper in the world is Carolina Reaper, followed by Trinidad Moruga Scorpion, 7 Pot Douglah, 7 Pot Primo, Trinidad Scorpion "Butch T". Naga Viper, Ghost Pepper, Bhut Jolokia and 7 Pot Barrackpore.