Cayenne pepper contains vitamins A and C, the antioxidants known as carotenoids and flavonoids and the chemical capsaicin. Capsaicin gives the pepper its spiciness and medicinal qualities. Create a tea by mixing 1/4 tsp. cayenne in 1 cup of hot water, and be prepared to sweat.
Digestion and Circulation
Hot cayenne tea can help your digestive and circulatory systems. It increases your salivary gland output as well as your stomach and gastrointestinal tract secretions. Such stimulation and soothing of your digestive tract can lead to more efficient digestion and the alleviation of constipation. Its circulatory benefits include reducing the risk of blood clots and heart attack and decreasing the stickiness of your blood platelets. The tea can also work as a preventive measure and treatment for heart disease and a method for lowering your blood pressure.
Cayenne pepper applied topically and taken internally in the form of tea can help alleviate pain, Encyclopedia.com reports. The hot tea can distract the sensory nerves from their focus on the pain, giving your body temporary relief from it. The tea also reduces a chemical known as substance P, which is responsible for transmitting pain signals from your nervous system to the brain. With less substance P coursing through your body, your brain has a reduced chance of receiving the signals usually sent by the substance.
Other health benefits of hot cayenne tea include helping alleviate coughs and congestion as well as stress-related depression, fatigue and low energy levels. The tea thins the mucus in your body, resulting in an overall enhanced flow of fluids throughout your system.
While hot cayenne tea can be beneficial for adults, it can come with side effects, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. It can also be harmful to children, especially those under the age of 2. An upset or irritated stomach is a potential side effect, especially if you suffer from heartburn or ulcers. Ingesting excessive amounts of cayenne can also lead to liver and kidney damage.
- altrendo images/Stockbyte/Getty Images