Cousin of the Bell and Jalapeńo peppers, Cayenne Pepper is an age-old natural spice that has been doubling as medicine and everything in between for centuries.
Disclaimer: for the best results in taking advantage of these tips and tricks, one must be willing to build up a tolerance and “take the heat”.
For as long as I could remember, I’ve always liked spicy food almost to the point of slight obsession. The summer before my freshman year of college, I was introduced to heat in it’s cheapest powdered form: Cayenne Pepper. Since then, I’ve always been known to carry it in my dorm kitchen and incorporate it somehow into my breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner.
Since then, I’ve yielded unexpected changes in weight-loss and energy without making any other major lifestyle changes. The science? Several studies have been conducted on the effectiveness of cayenne pepper, however, none conclusive enough for it to be marketed exclusively as a weight-loss supplement. In this study from Purdue University, participants who had regular cayenne pepper intake burned more calories on average due to a warmed inner core.
Cayenne pepper is proven to scientifically help alleviate pain, as it’s main ingredient, Capsaicin, is used in several arthritis and joint creams. For a homemade spin on a cayenne pepper healing balm, we recommend checking out this DIY recipe from Learning Herbs.
Celebrities everywhere, from Beyonce, Naomi Campbell, and even Dr. Oz, have recently sparked a community buzz for this pepper in extreme dieting. However, there are a few more practical everyday ways to use this pepper in order to gain its effortless health benefits.
- Spicy Ranch Dressing: Simply add cayenne pepper to ranch dressing, for a cooling effect and a guilt-free way to spice up your salad dressing.
- Congestion Remedy: Adding cayenne pepper, honey, and lemon to hot water will instantly alleviate congestion after consumption.
- Adding it to water: A couple of days ago, as part of the #MYWaterChallenge, we shared a link to the benefits of cayenne water as a metabolism booster. This is a great way to experience benefits without the intense heat for beginners. You can see the link here.
- Hair Growth Aid: Brace yourselves, the mere idea of using the cayenne pepper as a topical scalp treatment may sound crazy and unrealistic, but this ancient remedy has even been used to treat alopecia! When combined with a soothing essential oil, cayenne pepper can be administered to the scalp as a hair growth aid. The hot pepper creates a tingling sensation on hair follicles, which speeds up the circulation and blood flow in the scalp, eventually leading to faster hair generation. For more specific information on this process, I recommend checking out this article.
Are you ready to spice things up in your life with cayenne pepper?
Sydney Bugg is an undergraduate Public Relations student at The University of South Carolina from the Metro-Atlanta area. Sydney is currently working as a Marketing Intern for Manifest Yourself and hopes to break into the Advertising/Public Relations industry after graduation.