Turning up the Heat! Hot Pepper Style

Spicy, sweet and delicious hot peppers add a depth and intensity to any dish.  No matter your level of tolerance there is a pepper for you.  Ranging from 0 to 2 million on the heat scale peppers offer a nutritious, flavorful punch.

Feeling adventurous?  Try out some ghost pepper jelly alongside your poached cod.  Settling in for the night with a good book?  Add a dash of cayenne to hot chocolate.  Having trouble ridding yourself of that head cold?  A tonic of lemon juice, ginger and Franks Red Hot will clear up that congestion in no time.

What Nutrients do Peppers Offer

Depending on the variety of pepper it will offer varying amounts of Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Potassium, Folic Acid, Beta Carotene, Iron and smaller amounts of other vitamins and minerals.  While they are not a superfood per se there are numerous other reasons to keep a stock of peppers and hot sauces in your cupboards.

3 Health benefits of Consuming Hot Peppers

Thermogenesis

The production of heat by the body. Hot peppers quite literally turn up the heat, as they are digested by increasing the rate at which you burn off the foods you consume.  A Japanese study showed a definitive increase in energy expenditure of both men and women following a spicy meal.  Not to say that a couple peppers will drop the pounds but weekly consumption will help boost that metabolism.

Arthritic Pain

Here comes the science!  Substance P is a neuropeptide, which is associated with the inflammatory process in the human body.  The amount of substance P is shown to build up in patients suffering from both rheumatoid and osteoarthritis which can be reduced with the daily application of capsaicin creams to arthritic joints.  To learn more check out arthritis.org.

Congestion

Seasonal allergies, cold or flu got your head feeling full?  Skip the drug store and head into the produce aisle.  Bite into a hot pepper or add a dash of hot sauce to your lemon tea and your nasal passage will be cleared up in no time. The heat generated by capsaicin stimulates secretion of mucous and thins it so that it is more easily excreted.  Hands down the best all natural decongestant out there!

They Taste Good Too

Healthy and nutritious peppers offer a culinary adventure.  Travel the world in cuisine to see how different cultures make use of the colour, flavor and heat associated with peppers.  Where would Thai food be without its red and green curries?  The spices of India are incomplete without the peppery heat.  Mild Jamaican jerk?  No thank you!  A perfect Mexican mole is incomplete without ancho chillies.  Ok now I’m hungry!  Time for the Recipe of the Week; brought to us by Kook Channel.  This recipe is so hot it even won a contest!  Check out Adam’s Firecracker Chicken, with homemade hot sauce.


Episode 015 of Prescription of Flavor discusses the mighty hot pepper, Adam shares his recipe of the week and Jenn shows us just how wimpy she really is!

Want to have your question answered?  Have a topic you would like to hear about?  Have an ingredient you would like to see in the Recipe of the Week?

Contact Adam through www.kookchannel.com or leave Jenn a comment below!

New episodes of Prescription for flavor are upload to SoundCloud every Tuesday and Thursday listen in on any of your favorite podcast players for free.

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