Chances are you’re going to be reaching for the hot sauce after reading this bit of news.
Researchers at the University of Vermont have found a 13 percent reduced risk of death (most often from heart disease or strokes) when red chillies were part of a person’s diet. And the link seems to be all thanks to capsaicin, a key component of hot peppers, which we told you about earlier this year in relation to breast cancer.
These little peppers pack more than just heat — though we’re already feeling beads of sweat forming on our brows just thinking about chomping down on one.
The study, which was published by the Public Library of Science, followed over 16,000 Americans adults over a period of up to 23 years. Of those, the group who consumed the most chillies, thus extending their life the longest, were white Mexican-American males (many of them even smoked cigarettes and drank alcohol).
So just how many chillies should we be ingesting per week? Unfortunately, we’re still not so sure. The researchers didn’t track an exact number consumed by the group who benefited most. Which, of course, means that they’ve still got their work cut out for them.
“Because our study adds to the generalizability of previous findings, chilli pepper – or even spicy food – consumption may become a dietary recommendation and/or fuel further research in the form of clinical trials,” the researchers wrote.
Until then, keep things spicy.