You can still love hot spicy food with cayenne and know you are improving your heart health, antioxidants, cancer prevention, increased metabolism, and warding off ulcers by killing bad-gut bacteria.
Cayenne peppers has been eaten for over 9000 years. It is still used as a key detox ingredient for the decades old “Master Cleanse” 10-day detox plan.
Not only is this little fruit (yep it’s classified as a fruit but has properties of an herb) good for your insides it also aides on the outside as pain relief, allergy relief, anti-fugal to name a few.
History & Interesting Facts About Cayenne Pepper
The chili originated in Central and South America. It’s named after the capital city of the French Guiana, Cayenne. From seeds found on the floors of caves that were ancient human dwellings and from ancient fossil feces, scientists have found that people were eating peppers as early as 7000 B.C.
Cayenne is one of the main foods of the Hunzas in Asia, along with apricots and their pits, millet, and other simple foods. These people live to over a hundred years of age, which some say is because of their natural immune-boosting and anti-inflammatory foods that they consume daily. Cayenne peppers were even growing in the Hawaiian Islands in as early as 1897; these smaller and more pungent fruits were called “Hawaiian Chili Peppers.”
Today, you can find cayenne pepper all over the world, and it’s beginning to get a reputation for its health benefits. An interesting and popular detox and weight loss regime recently has been the cayenne pepper diet, which is a “cleanse” that flushes toxins from the body. The diet consists of a lemon and cayenne drink that is consumed about six times a day, and this lasts for about 10 days. The drink recipe calls for two tablespoons of lemon or lime juice, two tablespoons of real maple syrup, a pinch of cayenne pepper and eight ounces of water.
How to Use/Cook Cayenne Pepper
Cayenne peppers are available year around in the markets; you can find them in fresh, dried or powdered form. Because powdered cayenne pepper is sometimes a mix a poorer quality herbs, it’s best to buy cayenne peppers fresh; however, if you are using dried or powered pepper, the health benefits are still awesome.
In the store, look for raw, fresh chilies that have a brilliant red color and a healthy stem. Make sure there aren’t any spots, mold or spoiled tips. The pepper should look wholesome and firm. Once at home, store your peppers inside the refrigerator in a plastic bag; they will stay fresh for about a week.
Dry peppers are also available at the supermarket, especially health food stores. Dry peppers can be stored using airtight containers in a cool and dark place. Dried cayenne peppers can be milled to powder using a hand mill, or you can buy dry powder instead. Go for powders that are authentic and branded products — there are even organic options.
Fresh cayenne chili peppers can be used to make spicy drinks, sauce, chutney or can even be used for pickling. Make sure you wash them well first — you want to use any dirt, sand or fungicides.
Dried or powdered cayenne pepper is added to meals for a spicy (and healthy) kick. It can be added to meat, pasta, eggs, nuts and veggies — there are a ton of options. Start with a 1/2 teaspoon or so, and then work your way up; remember that it adds heat and can be too much for people who are spice-sensitive.
If you want a quick fix that will help you to experience these amazing cayenne pepper benefits, an easy way to get it in your body is by mixing it in a drink with water and lemon, which is similar to the drink consumed during the cayenne pepper diet, so it will give you the same detoxifying results.
There are also creams that contain capsaicin, the main component of cayenne pepper, that can be found in most stores. These creams are used to treat skin infections, sore muscles and tension. By rubbing a small amount of cream on the affected area, you will feel the pain and irritation subside.
If you are using a cream, make sure to read the directions carefully so that you don’t use too much. Also, be sure to wash your hands after applying capsaicin cream because it can cause a burning sensation on your hands; try washing with vinegar and water for the best results.
Recipes with Cayenne Pepper
There are a ton of ways to add cayenne pepper benefits to your diet and take advantage of these awesome benefits. It can be added to … dishes, nuts and seeds and even drinks.
… Secret Detox Drink Recipe that not only tastes great, it will help you burn fat, lose weight, balance blood sugar levels, and get your body healthy. If you want to cleanse, lose body fat, boost energy and help reverse disease, then adding natural detox drinks to your diet can help you improve your quality of life … fast!
Spicy Roasted Pumpkin Seeds Recipe
Cayenne pepper can stimulate your body’s circulation and reduce acidity. It’s a powerful, spicy little pepper and touts many health benefits like helping decrease appetite and retarding or slowing the growth of fat cells. Try it in this spicy roasted pumpkin seeds recipe.
Total Time: 5–10 minutes Serves: 6–8
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 pound raw pumpkin seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 4 teaspoon tabasco sauce
- Heat oil in a large pan over medium heat.
- Add pumpkin seeds and sauté for 2–3 minutes until they start to pop and turn golden brown.
- Add cayenne and tabasco, toss and continue to cook for another minute.
- Transfer to a sheet tray, carefully spread out in a single layer and set aside to let cool before serving.
Possible Side Effects
Medicinal lotions and creams that contain capsicum extract are known to be safe for most adults when applied to the skin and consumed. The active chemical in capsicum, capsaicin, is approved by the FDA as an over-the-counter product, so it can be sold without a prescription.
When cayenne pepper is used topically, the side effects can include skin irritation, burning and itching. It can also be extremely irritating to the eyes, nose and throat, so be careful when using cayenne pepper on sensitive skin or around the eyes. When consumed in moderate doses, side effects can include upset stomach and irritation, sweating, flushing, and runny nose.
Because cayenne pepper may increase bleeding during and after surgery, it’s best to stop using cayenne pepper as a natural medication at least two weeks before a scheduled surgery. Medications that slow blood clotting, such as anticoagulant and antiplatelet drugs, interact with cayenne pepper and should be avoided if you are using cayenne pepper as a natural health remedy. Some medications that slow blood clotting include aspirin, clopidogrel, diclofenac, ibuprofen, naproxen, warfarin and others.
… don’t use cayenne pepper on children under the age of two; it can be irritating and may lead to a negative reaction, especially on the skin.