For more than 9,000 years, Native Americans have used cayenne pepper as a food and medicine. This is mainly due to a substance called capsaicin.
This hot substance in this red pepper is known for its pain-relieving properties. In traditional medicine we find this hot pepper in Japan, China, Korea and India.
There it is used for digestive problems and loss of appetite, among other things. Many people think that the cayenne pepper comes from Indonesia, but that is not true. Originally, the pepper comes from South America and it was the Dutch who introduced the plant to Indonesia.
Cayenne pepper as a disease fighter
Although cayenne pepper is mainly known in Western society as a seasoning and not as a medicine, the red pepper has several medicinal functions. For example, did you know that half a teaspoon of red pepper contains no less than a quarter of the daily recommended amount of vitamin A? Vitamin A is an antioxidant that is extremely good for the immune system. That makes it a broad disease fighter and preventer. In addition, there is also a relatively large amount of vitamins B2, B6 and E in the plant and the minerals potassium and manganese are also present.
Losing weight and more energy
In addition, the active substance capsaicin ensures that your blood flows faster and that your body temperature is raised. The body wants to keep the temperature constant, so it has to work harder. This allows you to burn calories faster and therefore lose weight faster. Scientists also suspect that cayenne increases the supply of oxygen to the tissues in the body. That means that your overall energy level will go up. Many also claim that the substance counteracts elevated blood pressure. However, no scientific research has yet been done on this.
Cayenne pepper as a pain reliever
Finally, we would like to mention the most famous function of the cayenne pepper, namely its analgesic effect. The hot red pepper is a natural pain reliever with efficacy comparable to paracetamol and Neurofen. Why should we still take painkillers? The pepper contains neuropeptide substance P that counteracts pain and inflammation. It also works against stomach pain and menstrual complaints. A capsaicin cream can also provide pain relief for rheumatism.
Healthy and versatile
It is abundantly clear that the effect of cayenne pepper in Western society is greatly underestimated. Of course we already knew that the pepper helps against (chronic) colds, but now we know that it has many more functions. Does this red pepper also have a function for you or do you use it for something? Let us know in a comment what the pepper does for you!