Certain drinks sound, smell, and look delicious and appealing; others don’t. Some are not all that enjoyable. However, they offer so much in terms of health benefits that a certain lack of taste is considered a very small price to pay. Cayenne Pepper Tea is one such drink!
Cayenne is also known as Guinea spice, Capsicum, red hot chili pepper, bird pepper, cow-horn pepper, or—in its ground or powdered form—simply as red pepper. Most people are familiar with Cayenne from spicy dishes in which it is a common and delicious, if potent and hot, ingredient. What is less well known is that one can drink Cayenne Pepper in cold water or, more popularly, as a tea.
The ingredient that makes Cayenne effective is a chemical called capsaicin. Studies and anecdotal evidence indicate that capsaicin reduces pain when applied to the skin and may have broader health uses too.
- How to make Cayenne Pepper Tea
- 10 Health benefits of Cayenne Pepper tea
How to make Cayenne Pepper Tea
Making tea with this spice is not difficult, but the ‘recipe’ varies a little depending on what one wants to use it for. It’s also possible, given the great heat it can generate, that one may want or need to build up to the desired amount or dose gradually…
Some recipes, specifically for an immune and energy boosting drink, call for 1 teaspoon of spice. The cup or mug is then topped up with boiling or near boiling water. One stirs the liquid until the Cayenne dissolves. Tiny bits of pepper will float to the surface.
A tea that is consumed with weight loss and / or detoxification requires far less of the spice: only 1/10 teaspoon or 5ml. This is combined with 2 tablespoons of raw maple syrup and 2 of fresh lemon juice and boiling water. Some people prefer to drink their tea hot and others find it more palatable when it’s cold.
Here’s are top 3 recommended cayenne tea products for making it at home
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Ways to improve the taste of this tea
There is no denying that Cayenne Pepper is really spicy and hot; words like “delicious” don’t really spring to mind in relation to this tea. But there are a number of substances one can use to make it far more palatable, even pleasant, to drink.
If one wants to change the taste, adding a little fresh lemon juice or even pieces of peeled, fresh ginger can make a big difference. In order to sweeten the tea there are a number of options including honey, sugar, syrup, molasses, jam or a sugar substitute such as Xylitol or Stevia. The bottom line is that one needs to experiment in order to find things that work.
10 Health benefits of Cayenne Pepper tea
This article only looks at those health aspects that tea, as opposed to powder or cream, can or may help with. It’s also important to note that this spice is not promoted here as a cure. As with any other herb, one should always check with one’s doctor before consuming it if you are aiming to treat an issue or condition.
The health issues that Cayenne Pepper tea is considered to aid with or provide relief from include:
- Digestive problems: a whole range of gastric ailments and symptoms are thought to be eased by drinking this beverage. These include: nausea, indigestion, diarrhea, bloating or gas, heartburn, and constipation. It also improves the metabolism or absorption of food in the digestive tract. While further evidence is required, this hot spice may even prevent or ease gastric ulcers.
- Cardiac and vascular: capsaicin is a circulatory stimulant, balances cholesterol and triglycerides, lowers blood pressure, and prevents blood clot formation which in turn reduces the risk of stroke and heart attack.
- Irritation and inflammation: this type of pepper has been found to sooth irritation and help with things such as sore throats, laryngitis, and dry coughs.
- Cold and flu symptoms: the capsaicin in this herb breaks up mucus in the nose, sinuses, and throat. This makes it easier to clear it by blowing the nose or coughing.
- Detoxification: because cayenne speeds up circulation and digestion—and leads to perspiration!—it’s an excellent aid in terms of general detoxification.
- Anti-carcinogenic: while more research is required, early evidence suggests that this amazing herb may aid in fending off possible cancerous cells.
- Swallowing: in patients who struggle to swallow, like the elderly or those who have suffered a stroke or some other condition affecting the throat muscles, capsaicin before a meal may improve the ability to swallow both liquids and solids.
- Weight loss: this herb has been found to reduce appetite and boost the metabolism both of which aid in weight loss.
- Oral health: the herb stimulates saliva production which assists with promoting oral, specifically gum, health. It can also ease the pain of toothache.
- Stress relief and improved energy: the active ingredient in these peppers helps to ease stress-related depression. It also counters fatigue and improves energy levels, especially if the tea is drunk in the morning.
However, it’s essential to consult a doctor if symptoms persist!
Cayenne Pepper: possible dangers, side effects, and contra-indications
Just because Cayenne Pepper is plant-based does not necessarily mean that it is 100% safe. Many health professionals recommend, for example, only drinking this tea short-term. In addition, one shouldn’t drink it too often in a day as it may result in symptoms such as gastric distress, marked perspiration, and a running nose.
It’s also suggested that capsaicin should be avoided during pregnancy and breastfeeding. It should also not be given to children, those scheduled for surgery as the herb has a blood-thinning effect, individuals on medication for high blood pressure, or taking drugs that thin the blood and prevent clotting.
Is Cayenne Pepper Tea a miracle cure-all? No! Is it a really pleasant drink? Let’s say that it’s an acquired taste. Is it worth acquiring? Absolutely! Even for those who don’t suffer from any of the health issues discussed above, the preventative properties of this spicy, unique beverage make it more than worthwhile. Always make sure you’re doing your own research when it comes to the alleged health benefits of different foods,
As with anything, though, one has to use caution and make sure that it’s safe for the individual. Also, one should consume it in moderation and stop immediately if any side-effects appear.