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Guest writer: Jennifer Cassetta, clinical nutritionist, personal trainer and self-defense expert
You may know that cayenne pepper will spice up your chili and add a kick to any dish whether through a hot sauce or powder form. But did you know that you could relieve pain, rev up your metabolism and protect yourself with this spicy fruit too?
Here are three uncommon ways that cayenne can be used to protect you against arthritis, weight gain and attackers:
A chemical compound found in cayenne, called capsaicin, has been proven to help relieve pain associated with arthritis. The capsaicin is extracted and formed into gels and creams that you can buy in drugstores and rub onto your achy joints.
Cayenne, serrano, habanero and other spicy peppers are all foods that can help boost metabolism when added to your meals. They come on strong, so add them slowly but surely to your guacamole, soups, egg dishes and Tex-Mex meals.
Capsaicin not only can heal, it can also hurt! An attacker, that is. When used in the form of pepper spray, capsaicin can be a major irritant when sprayed at an attacker’s eyes and face. Keep a pepper spray attached to your keyring to use if ever in a dangerous situation to help fight off an unwanted advance and attack.
How can you get more cayenne in your life? Here’s one of my favorite simple recipes that bring in cayenne to kick up the flavor for a spicy chip!