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Health Benefits of the Jalapeño Pepper

The jalapeño pepper is one of the most versatile and delicious pepper varieties out there. Jalapeño (Capsicum Annuum) is a pepper from Mexico. It is delicious in cornbread, salsa, off the grill, and one hundred other ways! Bottom line — jalapeños pack a powerful taste and loads of nutrition! Read on to find out many of the health benefits of jalapeños!


The Health Benefits of Jalapeño Peppers

1. May Help Fight Cancer

Jalapeños contain a special natural plant compound called capsaicin. A study done by Luohe Medical College in China found that capsaicin was a possible natural treatment for cancer. Their research found capsaicin stops the growth of tumors by turning off the protein that promotes cancer cell growth. This study specifically tested breast cancer cells and found that it did inhibit the growth of breast cancer cells.

The Department of Nutrition and Food Science, College of Agriculture and Natural Resources at the University of Maryland conducted its own research on the jalapeño pepper as well. They found, “Capsaicin has been shown to alter the expression of several genes involved in cancer cell survival, growth arrest, angiogenesis, and metastasis. Recently, many research groups, including ours, found that capsaicin targets multiple signaling pathways, oncogenes, and tumor suppressor genes in various types of cancer models.”

2. Aids in Weight Loss

A study done in the Journal of Biological Chemistry found that the capsaicin found in jalapeños has the ability to boost your metabolism by increasing your core body temperature. The hot flavor of jalapeños can also lessen your appetite.

Another study found that capsaicin also helps increase calories burned after a meal. In a 110 pound woman, it was found to burn about 100 extra calories after a meal.

3. Prevents Bacteria Growth

Capsaicin has powerful antimicrobial properties. According to a study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology, bacterial growth was incredibly inhibited due to capsaicin. This same study found that capsaicin slowed the growth of E. coli as well!

Additional studies found that capsaicin helped prevent the spread of infection to deep tissues within the body!

4. Prevents Colds and Promotes a Strong Immune System

Did you know that a single jalapeños pepper packs more vitamin C than an orange? Just one serving of jalapeños contains 66 percent of the daily recommended amount of vitamin C! Vitamin C is an antioxidant known for its immune system boosting powers. It helps the body produce white blood cells and prevent illness.

Countless research studies prove that Vitamin C can eliminate or prevent infections. Some studies indicate that Vitamin C also helps people recover faster from illness.

5. Treats Migraines

The capsaicin found in jalapeños and other hot peppers has been linked to reducing the intensity and pain of migraines. Research found that 50 percent of those tested had pain reduction during migraine attacks! Head bothering you? Eat some jalapeño, or try a capsaicin jelly-like product for a topical application.

6. Can Boost Eye Sight

Jalapeños are loaded with vitamin A. In fact, just one jalapeño pepper has 17 percent of the recommended daily value of this powerful vitamin for men, and 22 percent for women. Vitamin A is known to boost skin and eye health. Its nutrients are even linked to reducing the risk of age-related macular degeneration, chronic eye diseases, and cataracts.

Types of Jalapeño Peppers

When it comes to jalapeños, there are several types! Here are some of the most common types and information on them:

Senorita Jalapeño Pepper

  • Dark green color that will turn purple and finally red if left to mature
  • Plant grows nearly 2 feet tall
  • Maturity period is 80 days from seed to harvest
  • Registers 5,000 SHU on the Scoville scale, meaning it is HOT HOT HOT

Fresno Chili Jalapeño Pepper

  • Similar to the senorita pepper
  • Shorter maturity time
  • Produces smaller, milder pepper
  • Usually about 2 inches in length
  • Registers 300-400 SHU on the Scoville scale, making it a mild pepper

Sierra Fuego Jalapeño Pepper

  • This is a hybrid pepper plant
  • Starts as s dark green color but changes to red
  • About 3.5 inches wide when mature
  • Mildly hot on the Scoville scale

Mucho Nacho Jalapeño

  • This is a fast maturing hybrid pepper
  • Reaches full maturity in 68 days
  • Fully mature peppers are approximately 4 inches
  • Well known for its large size and flavor, without high heat

Be Safe With Your Peppers

Jalapeños offer incredible health benefits, but it is important to know your pepper! Before indulging in some delicious jalapeños, ask yourself how well your body tolerates spice. Cooked jalapeños are not as spicy as raw ones. Just keep in mind how well your body tolerates spice!

It is also important to not touch your eyes while handling peppers. Make sure you wash your hands very well after handling any type of pepper. Some people with sensitive skin even choose to wear gloves while working with peppers. Should you experience a “pepper burn,” try washing your hands or burning area with white vinegar, milk, or yogurt.

Gold Coast Chiropractic

At Gold Coast Chiropractic, located in Chicago, Illinois, Dr. Paul Fisher cares about the overall health of his patients. Whether it is by providing the best chiropractic care in Chicago, or offering up nutrition advice for a healthy lifestyle, Dr. Fisher cares about his patients.

You can trust Gold Coast Chiropractic with all of your chiropractic needs. If you are experiencing back pain, neck pain, headaches, seasonal allergies, trouble sleeping, poor energy, brain fog, pregnancy, or just want to boost your overall wellness, Gold Coast Chiropractic can help!

Contact our offices today at 312.988.9655 or via email at You can also reach us via our 24 hour chat services on our website at We look forward to working with you on your health journey, and showing you all that chiropractic care has to offer!