I mean the spice not the band. Reseachers found that people who ate spicy food one or two days a week resulted in a 10 percent reduced overall risk for death. Consuming spicy food six to seven times a week reduced the risk by 14 percent.
Eating spicy food was also associated with a lower risk of death from cancer, heart diseases and respiratory illnesses.
In women, it also corresponded with a reduced risk of death from infections.
The links were stronger in those who did not drink alcohol.
The newest study was published recently in The BMJ and is based on dietary data of nearly 500,000 people from China. Study participants were enrolled between 2004 and 2008, and researchers followed them for an average of more than seven years. Out of 487,375 participants, 20,224 died during the study period.
Researchers stressed the findings were correlational; eating spicy food may also be linked to other dietary habits, lifestyle choices or socio-economic status.
The researchers drew no conclusions about cause and effect, but they noted that capsaicin, the main ingredient in chili peppers, had been found in other studies to have anti-obesity, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, and anti-hypertensive effects.
Should we start eating spicy foods everyday?
It might be too early to say.
According to one of the reserachers, Dr. Lu Qi, an associate professor of nutrition at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, “We need more evidence, especially from clinical trials, to further verify these findings, and we are looking forward to seeing data from other populations.”
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