Hi Mommy, Welcome to PregnancyMommy. This time we will discuss about 8 Benefit Eat Paprika When Pregnant, hopefully the article we wrote can be useful for Mommy.
Is spicy food safe during pregnancy?
Yes, spicy foods are safe for you and your baby when you are pregnant. They are definitely not on the long list of foods to avoid when you are expecting.
Many people (mistakenly) believe that eating spicy food is dangerous, regardless of whether you are pregnant or not. It is not true! Spicy foods are safe, although your taste buds and digestive system do not always tolerate heat well.
Spicy foods during pregnancy can have unpleasant consequences, especially if they tend to disrupt your digestive system when you are not pregnant.
8 Benefits Mommy Eat Paprika.
1. Loaded With Nutrients
Paprika is packed with micronutrients and beneficial compounds, with 1 tablespoon (6.8 grams) providing:
- Calories: 19
- Protein: less than 1 gram
- Fat: less than 1 gram
- Carbs: 4 grams
- Fiber: 2 grams
- Vitamin A: 19% of the Daily Value (DV)
- Vitamin E: 13% of the DV
- Vitamin B6: 9% of the DV
- Iron: 8% of the DV
Notably, this small amount boasts nearly 20% of your daily requirement for vitamin A. This spice also contains a variety of antioxidants that fight cell damage caused by reactive molecules called free radicals. Free radical damage is associated with chronic diseases, including heart disease and cancer. Thus, eating foods rich in antioxidants can help prevent these diseases. The main antioxidants of paprika belong to the family of carotenoids and include beta-carotene, capsanthin, zeaxanthin and lutein.
Summary : Paprika is rich in several vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. In particular, 1 tablespoon (6.8 grams) boasts 19% of your daily needs for vitamin A.
2. May Promote Healthy Vision
Paprika contains several nutrients that can improve eye health, including vitamin E, beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin. In fact, studies have linked high intake of some of these nutrients to food with a reduced risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and cataracts. In particular, lutein and zeaxanthin, which act as antioxidants, can prevent eye damage.
In a study of more than 1,800 women, those who consumed lutein and zeaxanthin were 32% less likely to develop cataracts than those who consumed the lowest. Another study of 4,519 adults also reported that increased intake of lutein and zeaxanthin was associated with a reduced risk of AMD.
Summary : Nutrients in paprika, particularly lutein and zeaxanthin, have been linked to better eye health and a lower risk of cataracts and AMD.
3. May Reduce Inflammation
Certain varieties of paprika, especially hot ones, contain the compound capsaicin. It's thought that capsaicin binds to receptors on your nerve cells to reduce inflammation and pain. Therefore, it may protect against a variety of inflammatory and autoimmune conditions, including arthritis, nerve damage, and digestive issues. Several studies show that topical creams with capsaicin help reduce pain caused by arthritis and nerve damage, but research on capsaicin tablets is more limited.
In a study in 376 adults with gastrointestinal diseases, capsaicin supplements helped prevent stomach inflammation and damage. Another study in rats revealed that 10 days of capsaicin supplements decreased inflammation associated with an autoimmune nerve condition. Still, specific research on paprika is needed.
Summary : The anti-inflammatory compound capsaicin in paprika may treat pain and fight inflammation associated with a variety of conditions, though more studies are necessary.
4. May Improve Your Cholesterol Levels
Paprika may benefit your cholesterol levels. In particular, capsanthin, a carotenoid in this popular spice, may raise levels of HDL (good) cholesterol, which is associated with a lower risk of heart disease. One two-week study found that rats fed diets with paprika and capsanthin experienced significant increases in HDL levels, compared with rats on a control diet.
The carotenoids in paprika may also help decrease levels of total and LDL cholesterol, which are linked to an increased risk of heart disease. In a 12-week study in 100 healthy adults, those who took a supplement containing 9 mg of paprika carotenoids per day had significantly lower LDL and total cholesterol levels than those who got a placebo. Nonetheless, more extensive research is needed.
Summary : Studies suggest that carotenoids in paprika may help lower LDL cholesterol levels and increase HDL cholesterol, thus improving heart health.
5. May Have Anticancer Effects
Numerous compounds in paprika may protect against cancer. Several paprika carotenoids, including beta carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, have been shown to fight oxidative stress, which is thought to increase your risk of certain cancers.
Notably, in a study in nearly 2,000 women, those with the highest blood levels of beta carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin, and total carotenoids were 25–35% less likely to develop breast cancer. What's more, capsaicin in paprika may inhibit cancer cell growth and survival by influencing the expression of several genes. However, more extensive research is needed on this spice's anticancer potential.
Summary : Compounds in paprika, including carotenoids and capsaicin, may block cancer cell growth and fight oxidative stress related to cancer risk. Yet, more studies are necessary.
6. May Improve Blood Sugar Control
The capsaicin in paprika may help manage diabetes. That's because capsaicin may influence genes involved in blood sugar control and inhibit enzymes that break down sugar in your body. It may also improve insulin sensitivity.
In a 4-week study in 42 pregnant women with diabetes, taking a daily 5-mg capsaicin supplement significantly decreased post-meal blood sugar levels, compared with a placebo. Another 4-week study in 36 adults found that a diet with capsaicin-containing chili pepper significantly decreased blood insulin levels after meals, compared with a chili-free diet. Lower insulin levels typically indicate better blood sugar control. Still, further research is necessary.
Summary : The capsaicin in paprika may help decrease blood sugar and insulin levels, which could be particularly advantageous for people with diabetes.
7. Important for Healthy Blood
Paprika is rich in iron and vitamin E, two micronutrients vital for healthy blood. Iron is a crucial part of hemoglobin, a protein in red blood cells that helps carry oxygen throughout your body, while vitamin E is needed to create healthy membranes for these cells.
Therefore, deficiencies in either of these nutrients may lower your red blood cell count. This can cause anemia, a condition marked by fatigue, pale skin, and shortness of breath. In fact, one study in 200 young women tied low iron intake to a nearly 6-fold increased risk of anemia, compared with adequate intake. What's more, animal studies suggest that vitamin E is highly effective at repairing damage to red blood cells — and that deficiency in this vitamin may lead to anemia.
Summary : Paprika is high in iron and vitamin E, both of which help create healthy red blood cells and may work to stave off anemia.
8. Easy to Add to Your Diet
Paprika is a versatile spice that can be incorporated into a multitude of dishes. It comes in three main varieties that differ in taste and color based on the cultivation and processing of the pepper. In addition to its sweetness, sweet paprika has a touch of smokiness. It can be used as a seasoning for meats, potato salad, and eggs.
On the other hand, hot paprika offers a spicier kick and is often added to soups and stews like Hungarian goulash. Finally, smoked paprika's sweet, smoky flavor works best with rice, lentil, and bean dishes. You can also add paprika to simple, everyday meals by sprinkling a dash on hard-boiled eggs, chopped veggies, dips, cooked rice, roasted potatoes, and salads. While paprika supplements are likewise available, there's very limited research on their safety and efficacy.
Summary : The three varieties of paprika — sweet, hot, and smoked — can be added to meat rubs, soups, eggs, beans, rice, and many other dishes.
Should I eat spicy food to induce labor?
Though plenty of women attest to eating spicy foods to get labor going, there's no evidence that this works. In fact, most of the rumored ways to naturally induce labor haven't been proven to help.
Some people theorize that spicy food causes contractions by stimulating the digestive system. Others suggest that spicy food increases production of prostaglandins, which can also help move labor along. But while an upset stomach or diarrhea could release prostaglandins into the body and stimulate mild uterine cramping, that's unlikely to be enough to cause labor.
One study that surveyed 663 women compiled 50 different triggers that have been linked to labor, including eating spicy foods. The majority of women said they couldn't link any specific trigger to the start of labor. The only trigger that did seem to have a possible noticeable effect in a small number of women was acupuncture.