What Are the Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar, Cayenne Pepper & Cinnamon?

by Tracey Roizman, D.C., Demand Media
    Cayenne pepper increases fat burning and may help you reach your ideal weight.

    Cayenne pepper increases fat burning and may help you reach your ideal weight.

    Foods and spices -- such as apple cider vinegar, cayenne pepper and cinnamon -- are bursting with flavor and potential health benefits; they might make your kitchen cupboard the place you reach for your next remedy. Though each offers its own distinct advantages, all three help you maintain a healthy metabolism.

    Cholesterol and Blood Sugar

    Apple cider vinegar may help lower cholesterol and blood sugar levels in diabetics, according to a laboratory animal study published in the December 2008 issue of the "Pakistani Journal of Biological Science." In the study, four weeks of supplementation with apple cider vinegar resulted in decreased levels of hemoglobin A1c, or HbA1c, a marker of blood sugar levels over several months prior to the test. Apple cider vinegar also significantly decreased levels of triglycerides and low-density lipoprotein, or LDL, the bad form of cholesterol, and raised levels of high-density lipoprotein, or HDL, the good form of cholesterol. Researchers concluded that apple cider vinegar may be valuable in managing diabetes.

    Weight Control

    Spicing up your diet with cayenne pepper may help you slim down, and it may increase the rate at which you burn calories, according to a study published in the January 2009 issue of the "American Journal of Clinical Nutrition." Participants took 6 milligrams of capsaicin, the active ingredient in cayenne pepper, per day for 12 weeks and showed faster fat metabolism and a decrease in abdominal fat.

    Pain Relief

    Using capsaicin may slow pain messages to the brain, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. A variety of conditions respond well to cayenne pepper, including arthritis, nerve pain and post-surgery pain. A study published in the September 2012 issue of the journal "European Neurology" found that capsaicin patches were effective and well-tolerated by patients with peripheral neuropathy, a form of nerve damage often associated with diabetes.

    Cinnamon and Blood Sugar

    Cinnamon may lower blood sugar levels by up to 29 percent and LDL cholesterol levels by up to 27 percent with only 1/2 teaspoon per day, according to Dr. Steven G. Pratt, coauthor of the book "SuperFoods HealthStyle: Simple Changes to Get the Most Out of Life for the Rest of Your Life."

    Cancer

    Eugenol, a compound in cinnamon, with antiseptic, pain-relieving and antibacterial properties, may help prevent cervical cancer, according to a study published in the October 2011 issue of the journal "Cancer Biotherapy and Radiopharmaceuticals." In the tissue culture study, eugenol killed cervical cancer cells and also enhanced the effectiveness of a chemotherapy drug commonly used to treat cervical cancer.

    About the Author

    Tracey Roizman has been a writer and speaker on natural and preventive health care since 1995. She holds a B.S. in nutritional biochemistry and a doctor of chiropractic degree, and is a postgraduate diplomate in chiropractic functional neurology.

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