By Aylin Erman, EcoSalon
Cayenne, also known as capsicum, is an extraordinary spice with remarkable health benefits. From hypertension and cancer to arthritis and infections, cayenne treats a slew of your health woes, and all it takes is a dash to reap the benefits of cayenne.
Cayenne derives from a hot chili pepper and is also known as Guinea spice, cow-horn pepper, aleva, bird pepper, and red pepper. It is named after the city Cayenne, in French Guiana. Cayenne is a rich source of potassium, calcium, beta-carotene, B-complexes, and vitamins A, C, and E. The capsaicin in cayenne is what brings the heat to the table. Whether for culinary or therapeutic purposes, cayenne is a valuable part of your diet. As a health booster, cayenne can be applied to your skin topically or ingested, depending on the ailment you are trying to treat.
Beneficial to the heart and the flow of blood throughout the body, cayenne raises body temperature, which dilates blood vessels and improves circulation. It thins the blood, remove its toxins and rebuilds cells. Because of its ability to increase blood flow, it is popularly categorized as an aphrodisiac. The spice is also able to normalize blood pressure, reduce hypertension, and get rid of blockages in arteries and veins.
The benefits of cayenne also include an ability to fight cancer. The capsaicin actually induces cancer cells to kill themselves in a process called “apoptosis.” It also has the ability to disrupt the integrity of fungal cells, which means the spice can be used to treat fungal infections.
Cayenne pepper can also activate sensory nerves and relieve rheumatism and arthritis pain. This is due to the fact that capsaicin holds anti-inflammatory properties. Because of its stimulating effects, cayenne pepper can actually be sprinkled into shoes and socks in the winter to protect the feet from frostbite on account of its thermogenic properties.
Also helpful for weight loss, to stop bleeding, to prevent scar formation, and for digestion, it is clear the effects of cayenne pepper on the body are many. The best way to get started is by adding a dash or two to lemon tea water in the morning, a salad at lunch, or cooked vegetables and meats at night. How ever you can sneak the spice into you daily diet, do it — a little goes a long way.
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