How many of us give the – chili pepper the respect it deserves? More often than not, most of us regard red pepper or Capsicum as nothing more than the spice added to give Cajun and Mexican cuisine its piquant kick. Technically speaking, cayenne pepper is the strongest red pepper variety of the Capsicum family, with Paprika being the mildest.
Throughout this discussion, the terms capsicum, and cayenne pepper will be used interchangeably. For our purposes, it’s important to know that herbalists and botanists have designated both of these terms for the same botanical agent.
Capsicum or Cayenne Pepper is one of the few herbs that can be measured by its BTU or thermal units. In other words, it is a hot and stimulating pepper plant that can generate heat.
Recently, new and very valuable medicinal uses for Capsicum have emerged through scientific discovery among health care practitioners, who have only just begun to uncover its marvelous therapeutic actions. It has been referred to as the purest and most effective natural stimulating botanical in the herbal medicine chest.
Because Capsicum is fiery and pungent, it is frequently regarded as dangerous and unpalatable. To the contrary, if it is used properly, Capsicum can be perfectly safe and impressively effective against a wide variety of physical disorders ranging from indigestion to ulcers to migraines. Its ability to lower blood cholesterol, boost circulation and even step up metabolism are worth serious consideration.
A powerful compound called capsaicin is what gives Capsicum its bite and is also responsible for most of its beneficial effects on human physiology. The hotter the pepper is, the higher its content of capsaicin.
It is important in evaluating this herb that while it can be used alone, Capsicum is frequently added to herbal combinations to potentiate their overall action
Capsicum is ascending in prestige and is regarded as a modern day botanical that is accruing new and impressive credentials. (1)
- Capsicum: Therapeutic Powerhouse and Herbal Catalyst, by Rita Elkins. Woodland Publishing Co., Pleasant Grove, UT.