Effects of Spicy Food on Health

Effects of Spicy Food on Health

Nowadays, a majority of the people spend their day caught up with work or family and household matters.

It is highly unlikely to put aside some time specifically for enjoyment and pleasure especially now when even the weekends are filled with business assignments or homework from school.

Very few people are able to relax and take their minds off the stress from different areas of life. Fortunately, common things are shared by most of the people to beat the tension of the day, for example, indulging in varieties of food.

Choosing meals and snacks to eat and give in to cravings might be a trivial thing but in reality, most people would agree that it is highly effective in providing mental satisfaction and relaxation.

Even though eating food and snacking might is essential for a person’s daily dose of contentment, a majority of the people are health conscious. This is why the assumption of ‘clean eating people having boring lives’ is considerably common.

However, anyone who has a balanced diet and still enjoys many different types of foods would disagree. Eating healthy certainly does not mean that a person has to live on salads his entire life to avoid dangers to health and weight loss.

Why Should You Not Restrict Food?

The aforementioned assumption of the clean eater’s life is also the reason why a lot of myths regarding diets, cooking and healthy living have emerged. Cutting off any nutrient or food is certainly not recommended with some exceptions such as intake of white refined sugar.

People who have particular health conditions might have such restrictions. For example, Celiac is an autoimmune disease whose patients have to cut gluten out of their lives because the immune system sees the protein as potentially harmful.

In other cases where people do not suffer from any such conditions, having most of the food is possible in a balanced diet. A lot of debates related to different types of foods have been becoming increasingly popular despite the lack of enough scientific backing.

Adding spice to food while cooking or just having spicy food from a restaurant or café has been recently portrayed negatively.

Spicy food became popular in the Western world after the introduction of spices from the countries which used them in their everyday food. A lot of spices and herbs were brought from Asia by the British beginning in the 18th century.

South Asia has been known to have some of the spiciest common foods that are consumed in daily diets. Spicy food is now admired in almost all regions of the world. The evidence can be seen by looking at the prevalence of Mexican or Indian restaurants in the United States.

Even though spicy food can disturb the health of a person who is not used to having such flavors, the effects are minor and rarely require any medication. It is like how a person who has never had pure milk will respond when if he or she ever has it.

Precisely, it all depends on the body of the person. Having something out of the normal food and routine affects every person the same way. No health risks have been associated with these types of bodily reactions.

What are the Advantages of Adding Spice while Cooking/having Spicy food?

In contrast to all the claims made by different people of having bland food without strong flavoring, there have been various studies that have shown the benefits of adding spice to food. If not every day, having a spicy meal once a meal can help the body in many different ways.

Some of the ways spice can be of good use are:

Boosting Metabolism

A person looking for ways to find weight loss and metabolic boost techniques might have come across various lists of foods that can help them without noticing the common thing in all of them is spicy food.

One of the most well-known benefits of spices is that they speed up the metabolism and burn more fat than the majority of the other foods. Capsaicin is one of the significant examples of spices that help shed excess pounds from the body.

Some spice-sensitive folks might not be able to handle the strong taste of capsaicin especially if they have never had it before. However, it does not mean they cannot make use of spices to aid their weight loss journey.

Bell peppers which have the same advantages as that of capsaicin but are much milder can be used as a substitute in recipes though it is recommended that the recipes which require bell peppers themselves should be picked instead to avoid mingling of not-so-liked flavors.

Building Immunity

In addition to having metabolism boosting properties, most spices such as chilies are loaded with Vitamin E, C, A and B6 that are known to be one of the most fundamental nutrients needed for a healthy immune system.

Perhaps the best thing about chilies is that they can be added to other meals that are not very appealing to the taste buds to spice them up.

They are low in calories and can make eating diet meals much easier.
Whether it’s oats, salads or bland boiled veggies, chilies can add a strong flavor to most of the food without giving a bad, mixed flavor.

Heart Health

One of the main reasons while people advise another person to avoid spicy food is because it is associated with the health of the heart. In reality, researchers have shown the opposite of this prevailing claim.

Spicy food has been linked to a reduction in chances of getting heart attacks and strokes. In fact, some of the spices have been observed to have bad cholesterol lowering and anti-inflammatory properties that can not only aid the heart but the overall health.

Stress Reduction

Having spicy food after a long day full of work or in between the office hours during lunch break has been seen to improve a person’s energy levels and work performance. Why is this so?

In accordance with the studies, consumption of spice stimulates endorphin secretion in the body. The hormone endorphin is commonly known as the happy hormone released upon mental satisfaction and pleasure.

This is why having a spicy meal will give a person more energy and uplift his mood, resulting in improvement of whatever work or activity that comes next.

Try adding cinnamon, peppers, cloves to lunch and see that it will not only help in maintaining concentration while providing energy but keep stress levels in the body in control.

Better Digestion

The aroma coming from a spicy meal is just not good to smell but also good for releasing essential acids in the stomach that are mandatory for better absorption and digestion of the food consumed. This is also why spicy foods tend to digest in a comparatively faster time.

Boosting metabolism along with digestion will make a person lose weight and promote a healthy appetite.


Adding spice to your cooking can help fight off diseases, aid digestion and improve general health. There are a lot of recipes available that use spices which are commonly available and are taste-friendly for spice sensitive people.

However, just as a person should not cut out a type of food entirely from his or her diet, a person should not consume too much of it either. Consuming spice in higher than normal quantities can damage the lining of the stomach, increase chances of ulcer and give acidity.

Secondly, make sure to check that consuming spice may not be bad for an existing health condition. Do not eat too much of a flavor that is too hard to handle.

Andrea White

As a graduate of Public Health and Policy, Andrea developed an interest in disease development, food and safety and the latest advancements in health. She is a Freelance writer who had affiliations with multiple blogs. Andrea is now pursuing her post-doctorate in Behavioral Sciences.

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