Hot stuff! Add chili peppers to your menu for a delicious, nutritious kick.

In addition to being high in an array of vitamins and minerals, hot peppers contain a substance known as capsaicin, which has an anti-inflammatory effect in the body. Some research suggests that eating chili peppers regularly may benefit your heart health, help prevent cancer, and lower your risk of diabetes. Talk about fighting fire with fire! Still, with the potential benefits and flavorful punch they pack, there’s good reason to add them to your dishes. If you’re new to the spicy side, start with tiny amounts of fresh or dried chili peppers, and choose mildly hot peppers like jalapeños over red-hot ones like habañeros. (Wash your hands thoroughly after handling peppers to avoid accidentally burning your eyes.) If you overdo it, know that milk will douse the flames more effectively than water. Dairy products contain casein, which attracts capsaicin molecules and washes them away. Yes, a little ice cream will do the trick too!

Source: Effects of chili consumption on postprandial glucose, insulin, and energy metabolism

“Try them in dips, soups, pastas, sauces, sandwiches, and anywhere else you want some heat.” Amy Gannon, R.D.

 

Posted on June 1, 2017 and filed under nutrition.