For a lot of people, the first thing that comes to mind is “hot”. Yes, some peppers are hot, but some are sweet too. In fact, there are some species of pepper that are not hot but are majorly known for their sweetness. Pepper is used in almost all households as spices for cooking. They are not just low in calories, they are loaded with good nutrition. Peppers are excellent sources of vitamins A and C, potassium, folic acid, and fiber. They come in different sizes too.
Growing up, I could remember that any pepper that has any other color aside from red, especially green color, would be considered unripe. Maybe even now, in some African countries, people still have that notion. Please, note that pepper comes in different colors ranging from green, orange, yellow, and red. There are some species that are particularly green and being green does not connote being unripe. An example is such is “Jalapeno”.
It is proven that the consumption of vegetables helps the prevention of chronic diseases, and pepper is not an exception. All peppers have rich in minerals, but further studies have revealed that red peppers are more loaded with more vitamins than other colors. Remember though that vitamins A and C are antioxidant vitamins that help to prevent cell damage and aging-related diseases because they also support the immune system.
Apart from the immune-boosting and disease prevention benefits of peppers, they have been proven to also decrease blood cholesterol and triglycerides, boost immunity and reduce the risk of stomach ulcers, especially hot peppers. Hot peppers get their hotness from capsaicin. Capsaicin does well with reducing cholesterol and it may also help in killing bacteria in the stomach that can cause ulcers. Contrary to old beliefs, red pepper does not aggravate ulcers, it rather helps with the prevention of ulcers.
Both sweet and hot peppers are also said to contain substances that increase body heat production and increase the consumption of oxygen too for about 20 minutes after eating it. It could be of great help for weight reduction because your body burns extra calories up to a few more minutes after eating pepper.
There are about 25 common types of pepper. Some are hot and some are sweet, but all are rich in nutrients. Some are common in some parts of the world than others. In fact, while in Africa, there are some pepper species you probably will not come across until you get to another continent. We will be analyzing the common ones and the species that we consider, based on several surveys and studies, as “must-have” in every kitchen.