Are Habanero Peppers Nutritious?

Habanero peppers are a favorite ingredient for many people that are fans of spicy food and want to make salsas, sauces, and dishes that have a little extra kick to them. However, those who dislike spicy foods might want to stay away from this hot chili pepper, which registers between 100,000 and 350,000 on the Scoville scale, according to The Spruce Eats. But it turns out, whether you love spice or hate it, there is a good reason why you should be eating habanero peppers. It turns out these spicy chili peppers are actually loaded with health benefits. 

The habanero's high capsaicin content is what gives the pepper its signature spicy kick, but it also provides a number of health benefits. Eating capsaicin has been shown to help reduce fatty deposits in the body, which can lower levels of bad cholesterol, according to Livestrong. It can also help aid in weight loss and reduce the risk of obesity by increasing the body's metabolism. Early research with laboratory mice has even linked capsaicin with helping prevent against prostate cancer, by inhibiting the growth of prostate cancer cells in the body.

The high concentration of capsaicin in habanero peppers provides a host of health benefits

Although consuming the spicy pepper certainly might seem stressful in the moment, studies have shown that eating foods high in capsaicin actually help lower your blood pressure by encouraging the release of a hormone called IGF-I, according to EcoWatch. Habanero peppers also contain high amounts of vitamins A and C, which can help protect against the growth of cancer cells. Per The Spruce Eats, they are also low in sodium as well as fat and calorie free, so they are a great way to pack lots of powerful flavor into a dish without adding lots of extra calories, sugar, or salt to the meal.

However, it is important not to overdo it with the pepper. The extreme spiciness of the habanero can cause digestive problems like heartburn, indigestion, and acid reflux. So, while you may want to take advantage of its capsaicin kick, adding habanero peppers to your diet in moderation is the best way to make the most of their health benefits.