Friday, July 26, 2013

Food As Medicine: Cayenne Pepper

I've been working hard to finish up my Family Herbalist certification.  As I've been going through the coursework, I'm continually amazed at how many of our foods have medicinal properties.

I'm especially intrigued by the properties of cayenne pepper.

For the longest time, I only thought of this spice when I was making chili or Mexican dishes.  But, after going through the coursework, I see there is so much more to this spice.

One of it's properties is the ability to stop bleeding.  By taking an 1/8 to a 1/4 tsp in water, bloody noses will stop bleeding quickly.  Cayenne will also stop bleeding when applied directly to the wound.  

A tincture of cayenne (or again, the powder mixed in a glass of water) can be used to treat shock.

Since cayenne has warming properties, it has been used in cases of hypothermia.  

Cayenne has anti- inflammatory properties that can help combat pain.  An ointment made with cayenne can help ease the pain of arthritis.

Cayenne has cardiovascular benefits as well.  It can help to lower cholesterol.  It can help to strengthen artery and vein walls.  It can help the heart beat (pump) more efficiently- stronger, not harder.

A tea made from cayenne can help quickly clear stuffed up sinuses.    

Cayenne is used in formulas for pain relief, infection, respiratory ailments, female problems, and thyroid balance. Cayenne is an ingredient in laxatives, diuretics and ulcer medication. Added to ginger, cayenne helps clean out the bronchial tubes. This powerful stimulant can also be used as a relaxant to soothe gas, diarrhea, asthma and toothaches.

There are so many more uses for this spice than just cooking!

None of this is to be taken as medical advice.  It is up to you to research and consult with your doctor on what is right for you.

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  1. This is great! I have a friend that just got her herbalist license and has been helping with some female issues of mine. I believe in the power of herbs now that I'm taking my formula. It's made my life much easier. My husband is thankful for the formula as well. And, it certainly helps on the pocket book when compared to the drastic measure of surgery that the doctor was trying to do. Okay, it's not drastic but, I don't want to have surgery if there's any way to prevent it. And, this is organic and affordable. Thanks herbs. This was an awesome post about the properties of the Cayenne.

  2. Thanks! I'm really starting to enjoy looking at how herbs can help my family =)