Surprising Health Benefits Of Paprika

Paprika is a spice commonly used to season various dishes, a popular choice being chicken. Not only does it serve as a flavor-enhancing addition to a meal, but it also has a surprisingly wide range of health benefits across various areas of the body.

Paprika is a spice produced from the ground red pepper seeds of Capsicum annum and can range in color, aroma, and taste between the United States, Central Europe, and Spain. Most commonly found to be bright red in color, it emits both a mildly sweet aroma, as well as taste (via McCormick Science Institute).

According to Healthline, between the number of vitamins and heart disease-fighting antioxidants, some research indicates that paprika may be a great way to help lower levels of "bad" cholesterol in our bodies, otherwise known as low-density lipoproteins (LDL). One of paprika's key components, capsanthin, has also shown to increase our "good" cholesterol levels, which play an important role in maintaining our cardiovascular health.

Paprika can benefit multiple areas of the body

Another potential benefit from the antioxidants and vitamins found in paprika is that it may help support our eye health. In a study conducted with over a thousand women, two of the nutrients found in paprika, lutein and zeaxanthin, when incorporated into their diet, appeared to be linked to the reduction of age-related eye disease.

Through research, additional nutrients found in paprika, particularly xanthophylls, have shown to increase our metabolism. As a result of this increased energy output, xanthophylls have shown to influence abdominal fat loss (via National Library of Medicine). Therefore, when incorporated into a healthy diet, paprika can be used to aid in one's weight loss goals.

Whether used in a sauce or in a smoothie, research indicates that paprika has the potential to positively affect our overall health from our heart, to our eyes, to our bellies, and much more. It may be worth a try the next time you're looking to spice up your favorite meal.