A member of the nightshade family, peppers have been around for over 7,000 years, and were first enjoyed by the Native Americans. Peppers can range in color and size, and can taste intensely hot, or even delicately sweet. With so much diversity and flavor, many can’t help but ask, ‘What is it that the humble pepper cannot do?’ They can spice up your favorite salsa, add a hint of sweetness on the grill, add nice color to an omelet — even prevent disease and help you lose weight.
Yes, that’s right! Many are discovering that these vibrantly colored delights have some pretty amazing health benefits to boot.
The Health Benefits
Peppers and chiles are wonderfully nutrient rich, and contain important carotenes, flavonoids, and more vitamin C than most citrus fruit! Their vibrant colors, ranging from red, yellow, orange and green (and sometimes purple) can be associated with different nutrients. Eating a diverse combination of peppers can offer vitamins A, C, B, beta-carotene and lycopene. These nutrients alone can strengthen eyesight, improve mood, provide energy and vitality, and support the immune system.
Furthermore, peppers are a natural anti-inflammatory, which help ward off disease as well as cancers in the pancreas, bladder and prostate. Consuming them on a regular basis can also lower blood pressure, which consequently, can lower your risk of a heart attack or stroke.
Why Peppers Can Help You lose Weight
Peppers contain few calories, and zero fat and cholesterol. Yet, this is not the only reason why eating peppers can aid in weight control. A study at UCLA Center For Human Nutrition found that eating chili peppers can better control metabolism. Even better, participants who consumed the peppers’ nutrients in pill form burned an additional 80 calories and appeared more energetic than those that were given a placebo.
How did that happen? Researchers found that a compound in peppers raises the body’s temperature; a similar effect to when a person goes for a light jog, or jumps rope. A pepper’s ability to warm the body can also keep us warm in the winter, yet cool in the summer when we perspire.
Finding The Best Peppers To Plant
Choosing a variety of natural peppers to include in your diet can offer the most diverse nutrients, and can keep your body balanced. Hot Mama’s Peppers and Chiles offers ten varieties of non-GMO and non-hybrid seeds, including certified organic and heirloom seeds. A few delicious peppers to try are our sweet Antohi Romanian Specialty Frying Pepper; perfect for summer sandwiches, our Yankeee Bell Peppers; stuffed with your favorite seasoned goodies, and spicing up chili, fried potatoes and tacos with Habaneros and Conchos Jalapeños.