Spicy food is a bit of a mystery. Why is it that we find such pleasure in pain? I mean, these hot dishes can result in an “atomic” experience, but we like it!
One theory is that it’s simply for the thrill, like the viral Samyang ramen challenge. In that case, it’s mind vs. body — and mind wins. Plus, it only retails at RM18 for 5 packs, making it an easy and affordable dish.
Another theory is that spicy food has a lot of benefits as well. Let’s take a look:
1. Speed up metabolism
Studies show that the main compound in chilies, called capsaicin, has a thermogenic effect and may cause the body to burn bonus calories for 20 minutes post chow-down.
2. Less stress/depressed
Spicy foods boost production of feel-good hormones, such as serotonin. So they may help ease depression and stress.
3. Lower blood pressure
Vitamins A and C strengthen the heart muscle walls, and the heat of the pepper increases blood flow throughout your body. All of this equals a stronger cardiovascular system.
4. Cancer prevention
Capsaicin (chemical compound found in chili peppers) has the ability to kill some cancer and leukemic cells. One particular spice, turmeric, found in curry powder and some mustards, may slow the spread of cancer and growth of tumors.
5. Healthier heart
Chili peppers can reduce the damaging effects of LDL (bad cholesterol), while capsaicin may fight inflammation, which has been flagged as a risk factor for heart issues.
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