Like my Uncle Mike did, I enjoy adding hot peppers to my pastas, salads, sandwiches, tacos, dips, and stir fry dishes. I find they add a refreshing and spicy kick to really any meal.
Plus, I know they’re excellent for my health and longevity!
In fact, according to a massive, new, international study, people who regularly enjoy hot peppers dramatically SLASH their risk of dying from cancer, heart disease, and—literally—ANYTHING else!
I’ll tell you all about that important study in just a moment.
But first, let’s back up to talk about the history of these colorful, nutritious vegetables…
Peppers come in many shapes, sizes, and degrees of spiciness
As I often report, peppers began growing wild in Central and South America tens of thousands of years ago. Then, about two thousand years ago, indigenous peoples in those areas started cultivating them. For example, they bred and grew peppers to use in cooking (often with cacao). And they used peppers medicinally for coughs and colds. They even used peppers in burial rites and artwork!
In the 1500s, when the Spanish began exploring the Americas, the indigenous peoples introduced him to these colorful, ancient cultivars. Then, of course, they brought pepper seeds and plants back with them to Spain. From there, pepper plants spread worldwide through trade routes.
Today, we typically divide peppers into two main categories: sweet or hot. And both are great additions to various dishes.
Indeed, I enjoy using sweet peppers to flavor main dishes, soups, salads, and stews. In France, Spain, Italy, Hungary, and Eastern Europe, they stuff these sweet pepper “shells” and roast them with mixed ground meats, rice, and other fillings. (On Friday, I’ll share with you a healthy rice pilaf recipe you can use to stuff your sweet peppers. Be sure to check back in!)
Of course, sweet peppers come in various colors—including green, yellow, and red. And they contain lots of healthy nutrients, including carotenoids. These powerful antioxidants help protect you against cellular aging, cancer, and other chronic diseases, not to mention boosting eyesight and brain power.
Now, hot peppers, also known as “chili” peppers, have many of the same nutrients as sweet peppers…with one MAJOR exception. They also contain capsaicin, a remarkable and powerful plant compound known to help prevent—or even reverse:
- Digestive issues
- High blood pressure
- High blood sugar
- Joint pain
With all of those amazing benefits, no wonder people who eat hot peppers have a MUCH lower risk of dying from ANY cause, as the new study shows…
People who eat chilis live longer!
For this massive, new study, U.S. researchers analyzed dietary information and health outcomes for more than 500,000 men and women from around the world.
It turns out, compared to people who rarely or never ate chili peppers, people who regularly enjoyed chili peppers had a:
- 26 lower risk of dying of cardiovascular disease
- 23 lower risk of dying of cancer
- 25 percent lower risk of dying from ANY cause
The researchers credited capsaicin for conferring all these impressive benefits. In fact, in an interview, the study’s lead researcher said that he suspects capsaicin “is probably mediating a lot of the potential health benefits.”
And I quite agree!
In the end, I encourage you to add a few chopped chili peppers to your meals throughout the week. And if you have a hard time tolerating anything spicy, start with a milder pepper—such as a banana or Anaheim pepper. (Here’s my guide for how to pick a perfect pepper, suited to your tastes and heat tolerance.)
In addition, I encourage you to find out more about the role inflammation plays in reducing pain and disease risk in my Protocol For Eliminating Deadly Inflammation. To learn more, or to enroll today, simply click here.
“People who eat chili pepper may live longer?” ScienceDaily, 11/9/20. (sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/11/201109074114.htm)
“Eating Chili Peppers Could Extend Your Life, Study Finds.” Newsweek, 11/10/20. (https://www.newsweek.com/chili-health-heart-cancer-1546230)