Capsaicin, the compound in chili peppers that makes them spicy, is often said to support weight loss. Proponents claim that consuming capsaicin extract can help speed up metabolism and reduce fat tissue, as well as curb your appetite. Although the mechanism of action is not fully understood, capsaicin appears to stimulate a receptor in the body known as TRPV1.
Cayenne peppers are a popular spice used in many different regional styles of cooking, and they have been used medicinally for thousands of years.
These peppers boast an impressive nutrition profile, which includes a variety of antioxidants that are beneficial for your health.
Capsaicin, the active ingredient in cayenne peppers, is what gives them their medicinal properties.
It also gives them their hot taste. In fact, how hot a cayenne pepper is depends on its capsaicin content. The more capsaicin it contains, the hotter it is.
FDA-labeled indications for capsaicin are arthritis and musculoskeletal pain, and FDA-nonlabeled indications are neuropathy postoperative complications, postherpetic neuralgia, postoperative nausea and vomiting (prophylaxis), and psoriasis.
Capsaicin, which makes chili peppers spicy, has been known to have health benefits. However, scientists have struggled with how to use the compound without it irritating the stomach or making it difficult to swallow, due to how fiery it is.
When you eat hot peppers or take capsaicin as a dietary supplement, the capsaicin may improve your digestion by increasing the digestive fluids in the stomach and by fighting bacteria that could cause an infection. It may also help fight diarrhea caused by bacterial infection.
Capsaicin acts as an antioxidant, protecting the cells of the body from damage by harmful molecules called free radicals. Capsaicin also may help prevent bacterial infections.
While scientists have yet to confirm that capsaicin can serve as a weight loss aid, some early studies suggest that this compound may be of some benefit. For a report published in Appetite in 2014, for instance, scientists sized up previously published clinical trials investigating the potential benefits of capsaicin compounds (known as capsaicinoids) on energy intake. In their review, the report’s authors found evidence that consumption of a minimum of 2 mg of capsaicinoids before a meal reduced energy intake by 74 calories during the meal.
Recently, we have discovered that CAPSAICIN, the chief ingredient in natural chili peppers, triggers the conversion of energy storing white adipocytes into energy expending brown like (Beige or brown in white, BRiTE, cells). This increases thermogenesis and counters high fat diet-induced obesity without modifying energy intake (in other words, without causing appetite suppression).
Capsaicin and other capsaicinoids have been proposed to have anti-obesity effects via their ability to increase energy expenditure and lipid oxidation, attenuate postprandial insulin response, increase satiety, and reduce appetite and energy intake [78-82]. Other research suggests that capsaicin increases satiety by inducing gastrointestinal distress (e.g., pain, burning sensation, nausea, and bloating, which could all reduce the desire to eat) rather than by releasing satiety hormones .
The capsaicin in cayenne peppers has metabolism-boosting properties.
It helps increase the amount of heat your body produces, making you burn more calories per day (2Trusted Source).
It does this through a process called diet-induced thermogenesis, which causes an increase in your metabolism.
Aiding weight loss
Along with lowering overall energy intake, some research also suggests that consuming capsaicin might be able to reduce the waist-to-hip measurement ratio, which is largely impacted by visceral body fat.
Capsaicin lowers glucose levels
When the body receives more glucose than it requires for energy production, it starts storing the excess amount as fats and glycogen in the body for later use.
The enzyme insulin, which regulates the levels of glucose in the body, facilitates this storage.
Capsaicin present in many chilies helps in decreasing plasma glucose levels and controlling the insulin levels.
May help diabetes
Like many features of healthy foods, capsaicin is very useful when aiming to prevent and treat diabetes. Consistently consuming foods high in this nutrient has been proven to improve the blood sugar and insulin reactions in both men and women, and also in women with gestational diabetes. (11)
When taken by mouth: Capsicum is LIKELY SAFE when consumed in amounts typically found in food. Capsicum is POSSIBLY SAFE when taken by mouth as medicine, short-term, Side effects can include stomach irritation and upset, sweating, flushing, and runny nose. Capsicum is POSSIBLY UNSAFE to take by mouth in large doses or for long periods of time. In rare cases, this can lead to more serious side effects like liver or kidney damage, as well as severe spikes in blood pressure.
Contrary to popular belief, it has been observed that if hot pepper is consumed in high enough quantities, it can actually trigger an asthma attack, typically in those who already have chronic cases of asthma, by causing air passages to spasm.
If you are not used to eating spicy food, capsaicin consumption can cause stomach pain, irritation, nausea, diarrhea, and other gastrointestinal problems.Capsaicin causes allergic reactions in some individuals.
Capsaicin causes allergic reactions in some individuals.
You can add cayenne pepper to your diet in a few ways. You can cook with the pepper, but this may be difficult to do each day. You can also buy powdered cayenne pepper and add it to your water, smoothie, or protein shake. About 28 grams of fresh chili pepper or 1 gram of dried chili pepper can be enough to provide benefits.
You can also make an infusion using up to 1 teaspoon of powdered cayenne pepper per cup of water. Take a 1 teaspoon dose of this mixture in a small amount of water a few times per day.
There is no typical dosage for using capsaicin for weight loss purposes. Small amounts have been shown to activate TRPV1. Talk to your doctor about the best capsaicin dosage level for you.