Red Pepper as an Appetite Suppressant?


It turns out that adding just half a teaspoon of red pepper to food can suppress the appetite and burn calories. The effect is subtle, but according to a study done by Purdue University, the capsaicin found in most chili peppers did work as claimed.

The Research

chili-pepperApparently, other studies did find that capsaicin reduced hunger and increased calorie burning but the studies used an amount that most of the U.S. population would find too high. Purdue University found that using just half a teaspoon of dried, ground cayenne red pepper did curb the appetite for fatty, sweet, and salty foods. They also found that it burned more calories by increasing the core body temperature.

Part of what makes capsaicin work so well is the effect of the heat it produces when eaten. When taken in capsule form the effect was lessened. The findings indicate that the sensory experience of capsaicin’s heat and burning in the mouth increased the digestive process by increasing the body temperature and the burning of calories, as well controlling the appetite.

One drawback of using red pepper is that people who liked and were familiar with it had less of the beneficial effects. People who had not been using it previously and were unfamiliar with it had the greatest benefit. Unfortunately, those unfamiliar with red pepper saw less benefit as they used it more.

Further research is needed to find out how long red pepper can be consumed before it starts losing its effect and how to adjust the diet so that it continues to stay effective.

Other Appetite Suppressants

  • Eat an apple before a meal. Apples have pectin, a soluble fiber that will help you feel full faster. The pectin also helps to delay the amount of sugar absorbed into the blood stream, avoiding blood sugar spikes.
  • Add bran to a large glass of water or directly to food. It helps you feel full for about an hour as it absorbs moisture in the stomach and expands. It will help you eat less. If you are allergic to wheat bran, rice bran will provide the same results.
  • Drinking green tea between meals will help you feel full. It contains a phytonutrient that increases the body’s appetite-regulating hormone called cholecystokinin (CCK) that makes you feel full. The effect can last 2 to 4 hours. Apparently, green tea also helps the body burn fat.
  • Add a tablespoon of red wine vinegar to sparkling water and drink with meals. It suppresses the appetite and makes you feel full longer. Red wine vinegar also helps to regulate blood sugar.
  • Pine nuts, like green tea, increase the appetite-regulating hormone CCK.

There are many natural and healthy ways to suppress the appetite. Whether you like the spicy hotness of red peppers or the mellow bitterness of green tea, there is a healthy appetite suppressant to suit your palette.


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