Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Spice: It's okay, it's good for you!

I have been know to over indulge in spice on occasion. Alas! Those who have regularly eaten my cooking quickly work there way up the chili chart at the local Thai restaurant from medium to Thai hot pretty quick! My usual response to dinners that have just sucked down their third glass of water in as many bites of dinner is, "don't worry, it's healthy, the more you sweat the better! Plus look at all that water you drank! You'll have no trouble drinking your eight glasses today!". Really, though, I feel bad I went too heavy handed on the spice (cayenne is my undoing), but there is an element of truth in my words. Spicy foods are very benificial in a wide array of areas.

I'll focus on the infamous chili pepper for the time being, as I want to lay down the benefits of capsacin, the naturally occurring miracle chemical compound that makes peppers hot.

Capsacin can be used as:
  • an anti-fungal
  • an anti-microbial
  • a topical analgesic
  • a temporary relief of minor aches and pains of muscles and joints
  • a way to treat psoriasis
  • a way to regulate blood sugar levels
  • has been shown to kill prostate cancer cells
  • inhibits the growth of leukemic cells
  • reduces pain resulted rheumatoid arthritis as well as joint or muscle pain from fibromyalgia
  • there is some evidence that capsaicin may help treat heartburn and circulatory problems such as heart disease from atherosclerosis or plaque that block the arteries to the heart.
  • may also help in reducing risks of arrhythmia.
  • is also a great natural expectorant and can be used to clear the lungs of mucus.
So eat spicy, drink water, drink almond milk, drink a sugar water solution (helps as well as milk), and do it for your health!

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