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Chili peppers are truly an amazing food that not only adds spice to many different dishes you prepare but also have extraordinary health benefits to go along with them.
The chili pepper has been dated back as far as 7500 BC and originated in America.  Christopher Columbus discovered them in America and brought them back to Spain in 1494 mostly because of the medicinal uses they were known for.

Where are Chili Peppers Grown and How to Grow Them?

 chilli_peppers.jpgpeppers are grown around the world but grow best in warm climates such as the far southern states of The United States and in Mexico.  Chili peppers do not do well in the cold; they need a lot of warm weather and decent watering to produce well.  

Chili peppers are generally started by seed indoors and then are transplanted into a garden when the climate temperatures have gotten warm enough and there is no threat of frost.  Cool nights where temperatures fall below 55 degrees F may stunt the growth of the plant.  The plants should be placed approximately 20 inches apart.  It is important to plant peppers in their own separate areas as cross pollination can occur if planted too close to other vegetables, such as tomatoes; you may end up with hot tomatoes if peppers are planted too closely.   The plants should be well watered and the planting area should be weeded carefully.  Chili peppers are ready to harvest when the pepper has turned the color it is supposed to be.  

Nutrients Found in Chili Peppers

Chili peppers contain a great deal of essential vitamins that help support a healthy body. 

They contain Vitamin C, which is a natural immune booster and helps to prevent the damage of cells by free radicals that have been noted as cancer causing agents.  They contain Vitamin K which is essential to help the blood in the body to clot.  When tissue is injured, Vitamin K begins the process of healing by helping to stop the bleeding.  Vitamin B6, which is found in chili peppers can help reduce inflammation of the mouth, can help reduce morning sickness, and is known to help with nervous disorders.  Chili peppers are high in Vitamin A which is found to be essential for proper functioning of the eyes.  They are very low in cholesterol and saturated fat which makes them a very good food to help prevent heart related problems.


Healthy ways to Prepare Chili Peppers

Chili peppers come in a variety of colors and heat index; some are mild while others are very hot.  Cooking peppers tends to lessen the heat of the food and can actually make the pepper sweet.  The healthiest way to prepare chili peppers, to get the full benefits of the vitamins and components that are beneficial to the body, is to eat them raw however if they are extra hot this is not always an option.  Baking the peppers or adding them to soup, salads, or stir fry meals is always a healthy alternative to eating them raw.  It is important to remember when preparing chili peppers, the heat of the pepper is in the seeds; if you are preparing very hot peppers, it is suggested you wear protective gloves as you can cause skin irritation if you handle the peppers bare handed.  

Health Benefits of Chili Peppers

In an article published by Medical News Today states that the health benefits found in peppers has shown to reduce the risk of prostate cancer by reducing the cancer cell production in PSA which leads to prostate cancer.  The Capsaicin found in chili peppers is the component which causes the peppers to be hot is also found to make cancer cells found in prostate cancer, to kill themselves.

Chili peppers are also noted to help relieve the symptoms of migraine or sinus headaches due to the capsaicin, which is found in chili peppers and is the component that makes the peppers hot.  This same component found in chili peppers is also found to prevent sinus infections and can relieve congestion due to respiratory problems. 

Adding chili peppers to your diet can also help relieve the symptoms and even cure IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease) because of the capsaicin found in the peppers. 

One chili pepper is said to have more Vitamin C than what one can receive from an orange.  Vitamin C is essential to help build a strong immune system to fight infections and destroy free radicals that are cancer causing agents within the body. 

Chili peppers are low in cholesterol and saturated fats which include them into a food source that is excellent to help prevent and or reduce the threat of heart related illnesses