Capsicum – Cayenne

A rich source of Canthaxanthin (Alpha-Carotene) and other carotenes and phytonutrients. Canthaxanthin is the red pigment that makes Red Pepper (Capsicum-cayenne) (Capsicum annuum) such a vibrant red color. Capsicum ( or cayenne) is an overall tonic, especially for the heart. A favorite of legendary master herbalist, Jethro Kloss, in his book Back to Eden, where he described typical herb benefits in one or two paragraphs, capsicum’s list of benefits spans 16 pages! It assists with assimilation, healing, elimination of parasites, improved circulation, cleansing, indigestion, urinary tract health, colds, flu and other benefits too numerous to mention.

It is rich in Canthaxanthin, Albumen, Pectin, Mineral Compounds, Ethereal Oils & Phytonutrients. Carotenoids are lipophilic yellow-orange-red pigments found in plants, algae and even microorganisms. These pigments are important for plant and animal health as they play a special role in protecting tissues from oxidation, or aging, as faciliteted by light and oxygen. Carotenoids in plants can indicate environmental damage. Carotenoids are closely related to zeaxanthine, lutein, astaxanthin, canthaxanthin, violaxanthin, fucoxanthin etc. Carotenoids are found in leafy vegetables; yellow or orange fruits and some vegetable oils, many algae and fungi. Particularly, carrot, red chilli, paprika, palm oil, sea buckthorn berries are popular sources of -carotene.

The red pepper (or Capsicum) from the Solanaceae family (nightshades) has been used since ancient times to give red color and heat to foods. The genus Capsicum includes over 20 wild species and 5 domesticated species: Capsicum annuum (the most commonly grown), C. baccatum, C. chinense, C. frutescens, and C. pubescens. The amount of capsaicin in hot peppers is measured in Scoville heat units (SHU). The world’s current hottest known pepper as rated in SHU is the Trinidad Moruga Scorpion, measured at over 2,000,000.

Ground paprika and oleoresins (extract) are used to modify color and flavor of soups, stews, sausage, cheese, snacks, salad dressing, souces, pizza, confectionaries, beverages etc. The red color of capsicum are imparted by carotenoids with more than 50 identified structures. The unique keto carotenoids capsanthin, capsorubin and cryptocapsin impart brilliant red color to ripen chilly pods, while the yellow orange color is from -carotene, zeaxanthin, violaxanthin and -cryptoxanthin.

Author: Life Enthusiast