Capsaicin dermal patch, capsaicin pills, extract and cream are available in the market and they are used to treat various health problems. All these products contain extract of hot peppers. They help relieve pain, reduce inflammation, improve heart health, and even promote weight loss. Many people consume capsaicin pills for weight loss. But excessive consumption of these pills for achieving desired weight loss can lead to certain side effects.
Capsaicin carries analgesic properties. It triggers the release of endorphins from the pituitary gland and hypothalamus which help relieve pain. Many people enjoy food which contains a high amount of cayenne pepper. It increases pungency of the food. Spicy and hot food stimulates the release of endorphins which act as neurotransmitters and offer you a feeling of well-being.
Capsaicin is also used to make ointments which when applied topically, help relieve pain, especially joint pain from osteoarthritis and pain of peripheral neuropathy. It curbs the activity of substance P which causes pain and inflammation in body. It works great for nasal congestion, commonly experienced during sinusitis. Capsaicin nasal spray triggers secretion of mucus and thus, helps get rid of the mucus fast.
Capsaicin helps lower blood cholesterol and triglycerides levels. It promotes stable and normal blood pressure levels. It helps regulate blood sugar levels. It helps maintain the health of the digestive tract by rebuilding and repairing damaged tissues. It enhances the function of stomach and intestines. It leads to increased production of heat in the body and works great for hypothermia (low body temperature). It is believed that it helps prevent cancer. It is also present in personal defense pepper sprays.
What attracts most people is the use of capsaicin for weight loss. It has been observed that capsaicin being a heat-producing agent, leads to increased rate of metabolism and fast burning of fats. This results in weight loss. Capsaicin pills have therefore become popular worldwide. Excessive consumption of these pills or consumption of capsaicin without consulting a physician can affect your health seriously.
Capsaicin Side Effects
Creams, lotions of capsaicin which are to be applied topically, should be first applied on a small area of skin for trial. Capsaicin cream can lead to side effects like burning or stinging sensation. The skin may turn red or may become warm. Application of cream might lead to development of skin rash. People who are allergic to capsaicin may develop skin hives. Irritation, itchiness, breathing difficulty, chest congestion may be experienced in severe cases. One should see a physician immediately in case of worsening of symptoms.
Excessive use of the nasal spray can result in side effects like burning sensation in nose and eyes, coughing, sneezing, etc. It can lead to watery eyes and burning throat or irritation in throat. The defense sprays which contain capsaicin should be kept away from the reach of children. When the particles in the spray come in contact with the delicate mucus membranes or eyes, they can lead to burning and stinging sensation. They can affect the vision of the person. Excessive exposure to the particles can result in capsaicin induced asthma.
Capsaicin pills side effects include burning sensation in the stomach. If the capsule is broken and the powder is exposed, it can lead to burning sensation in lips, tongue and throat. Adverse effects of overdose or allergic effects include difficulty breathing, chest congestion, blue skin, and convulsions. Swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue can also be experienced by the person. There can be a temporary rise in blood pressure levels. Consumption of these pills can lead to nausea and vomiting while some may suffer from stomach pain and diarrhea.
Capsaicin may interfere with your routine drugs. For example, it may interfere with hypertension medication lisinopril and may give rise to cough. Some studies show that excessive intake of capsaicin has resulted in increased risk for stomach and liver cancer.
It is safe to conclude that capsaicin, when ingested in small amounts can help improve your health in several ways. It can even help reduce the risk of cancer. But excessive consumption of capsaicin can lead to certain side effects. If you are opting for capsaicin pills, consult your physician about the dosage and follow the instructions of the physician religiously.