Oftentimes, an important and immensely nutritious food item hides in plain sight. And while people scramble around looking for the next big thing, such foods demand that we go back to the basics and re-examine the food we already eat to know more about their health benefits.
One such food is black pepper which is an ingredient in innumerable recipes. A native of Kerala, it is now grown throughout the world, all year round and favours hot and humid climates. Apart from being a part of various cuisines, black pepper also has an extensive Ayurvedic history as it has been used for its medicinal properties for ages.
Organic Black Pepper comes from the fruit of the pepper plant, which is dried and sold as a spice. Even though we consume it on a regular basis, most of us don’t really know how it is improving the health of our body. Here is a list of its nutritional benefits which will make you reconsider the humble spice black pepper and give it your well-deserved attention:-
- Energizes the digestive system
One of the biggest health benefits of black pepper is its ability to energize the digestive system and thus encourage better digestive health. A poor digestive system can lead to a variety of illnesses including colic, flatulence, constipation, diarrhea etc. But consuming black pepper can keep all of these at bay due to its effect of stimulating the secretion of hydrochloric acid in the stomach. As a result, the food is broken down much better and the digestive process can go on smoothly.
Related to its pro-digestive properties is the ability of black pepper to function as a carminative which means that it helps to relieve intestinal gas in a healthy way and also aids in preventing the formation of gas.
- Helps in weight loss
If you’re on a dieting regime and are looking to lose weight, you can rest assured that black pepper can help you attain that goal.
In a recent study, scientists discovered that the phytonutrients in black pepper are capable of breaking down the accumulated fat cells in the body. This not only helps you lose excess fat that is sitting in your body, but the broken down fat can then be put to more healthy use in the body. Also, black pepper has an effect on the metabolism of the body, improving it so you can burn off calories much more easily.
- Assists in cleaning out toxins
Black pepper has been classified as a diuretic and a diaphoretic which means that it encourages urination and sweating. Via urination, you can rid your body of urea, excess water, uric acid and fat; on the other hand, sweating cleans out the pores on the skin and removes toxins that get accumulated in the body. Due to its double effect, black pepper is incredibly helpful in flushing out toxins from the body.
- Fights off arthritis
Black pepper’s ability to fight off arthritis stems from a compound found in it known as piperine. Piperine is known for its anti-inflammatory properties which mean it can help in reducing joint pain in patients suffering from arthritis.
Moreover, black pepper also boosts blood circulation, another big cause of joint pain and also helps to reduce the pain felt by arthritis patients.
- Can help prevent cancer
Black pepper has significant anti-oxidant properties which make it a front-runner for an anti-cancer food. Free radicals are released as a result of our metabolism and they can go on a rampage inside your body, affecting the DNA of healthy cells and converting them into cancerous cells. An anti-oxidant like black pepper can neutralize the effect of such harmful free radicals and keep cancer at bay. In particular, black pepper has been discovered to be extremely potent in preventing colon and breast cancer.
- Improves neurological health
Piperine, the wonder constituent of black pepper stimulates neural pathways in the brain and helps to improve cognitive functioning, while at the same time lowering the risk of memory loss and dementia.
To know more about black pepper, click here.