Cayenne Pepper Health Benefits Cardiovascular Health

by Dr. Stephen Sinatra
Filed Under: Heart Health, Food and Nutrition
Last Reviewed 03/28/2014

Either as a powder or in its whole form, cayenne pepper is widely used to sharpen the taste of dishes (such as in Szechuan cuisine).

Cayenne Pepper Health Benefits Cardiovascular Health However, cayenne pepper health benefits have also long been used as an herbal medication and is known for its ability to help with cardiovascular problems and joint pain.

Over the years, patients have told me that capsaicin, available as a supplement, has helped alleviate angina and improve heart failure. I don’t know the precise reason why, but I suspect it has vasodilating properties, which explains why it increases circulation (and temperature) wherever it’s applied.

You see, the key compound that provides the cayenne pepper health benefits is a pungent substance called capsaicin, which is the main active ingredient in a number of over-the-counter “hot creams” for joint and muscle pain. Capsaicin creates the sensation of heat through a thermogenic effect that raises body temperature and boosts circulation in the area where it’s applied. Taken orally, it may help to burn calories and contribute to weight loss.

Including Cayenne Pepper Health Benefits in Your Diet

It’s easy to include cayenne pepper in your healthy heart nutrition program. You can cook with it in chili or other dishes, or sprinkle it on fish, soup or salads, a few times per week if you like the flavor. As a supplement, you can take 2,000–4,000 mg every other day for optimal cayenne pepper health benefits.

For more information on cardiovascular nutrition, visit www.drsinatra.com.

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