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Eating Spicy Food Linked to a Longer Life

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Published on : Aug 05, 2015

People who enjoys eating chili peppers might be savoring their way to a longer life, and this is affirmed by a new study published in The BMJ. The study was led by Lu Qi, who works as associate professor at the Harvard School of Public Health. In a recent interview Lu Qi said that many of us have some knowledge about the beneficial effects of spicy foods from brief human studies and animal studies. Some of these preliminary studies has discovered that the active components in spicy food such as capsaicin, a compound found commonly in chili peppers, has the ability to lower inflammation and improve the person’s metabolic status. The compound also positively effects gut bacteria and weight of a person, Lu Qi said. However, human evidences of these studies are scant. 

Lu Qi and another team of researchers observed the questionnaire data prepared with inputs from a half a million of adults across China, who also participated in the Kadoorie Biobank study in China between 2004 and 2008. Each participant of the study reported about the status of their health, the level of spicy food consumption, alcohol consumption, meat and vegetable consumption, and main source of chili consumption. The researchers followed up with the participants over a period spanning about seven years. They noticed during the course of time that people who ate spicy food ones or twice a week had 10% reduced risk of death than the people who ate them may be ones in a week. Meanwhile people who consumed spicy food for 3 to 7 days a week faced 14% reduced risk of death compared to the group most averse to spice. 

Moreover, the research conducted on Chinese adults also demonstrated that the people who chili-rick spicy food has lower risk of death from diseases such as cancer, respiratory diseases, and ischemic heart diseases.