Monday, 19 May 2014

Herbal Cayenne as Antioxidants

Cayenne is also known as Cayenne Pepper, a red, hot chili pepper, belonging to Capsicum annuum, the family Solanaceae, native to sub-tropical and tropical regions. It has been used in traditional medicine to increases metabolism, enhance circulatory system and stomach and the intestinal tract, adjust blood pressure, lower LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, treat frostbite, muscles, arthritis, rheumatism, low back pain, strains, sprains, bruises and neuralgia, etc.

Free radicals are atoms, molecules, or ions with unpaired electrons through chemical bonds with other atoms or molecules during a chemical reaction. They may have positive, negative or zero charge. The unpaired electrons cause radicals to be highly chemically reactive in the human body, leading to aging and cancers.

The chemical constituents of Cayenne include capsaicin,  capsacutin oil, solaine, xanthenes, oleic acid, palmitic acid, etc.

According to the Texas A&M University, the antioxidant activities of cayenne may be due to its
rich source of diverse bioactive compounds, including : hexane, ethyl acetate, acetone, methanol, and methanol:water. In high concentrations, the extracts exerted different measures of antioxidant activity, with DPPH radical-scavenging activity was strongly correlated with total bioactive compounds such as capsaicinoids, carotenoids, flavonoids and total phenolics(1). The study consisted Four cultivars (Bronowicka Ostra, Cyklon, Tornado, and Tajfun) of pepper fruit Capsicum annuum L., phenolics contents, showed a positive effect of the compounds in exerting its antioxidant activities through elucidated in heat-induced oxidation in the beta-carotene-linoleic acid system(2).
The Universidad Complutense de Madrid suusgested that the antioxidants exerted by cayenne may be due to the amount released from the food matrix by the action of digestive enzymes, about 75% for total polyphenols, up to 49% for both beta-carotene and zeaxanthin, and up to 41% for beta-cryptoxanthin.(3).
Other research suggested Organic growing showed to increased the level of antioxidant compounds such as carotenoids, phenolic compounds and vitamin C in sweet bell pepper, another member family of Capsicum annuum(4).

The Side Effects
1. It may cause allergic reaction in young children
2. It may also cause hypertensive response if overdosed.
3. It may promote symptoms of acute anal fissure.
4. It may cause burning sensation to certain people in the first taste
5. Do not use cayenne pepper in young children
6. Etc.

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(1) Variation of antioxidant activity and the levels of bioactive compounds in lipophilic and hydrophilic extracts from hot pepper (Capsicum spp.) cultivars by Bae H1, Jayaprakasha GK, Jifon J, Patil BS.(PubMed)
(2) Antioxidant activity of the main phenolic compounds isolated from hot pepper fruit (Capsicum annuum L) by Materska M1, Perucka I.(PubMed)
(3) Bioactive compounds of four hot pepper varieties (Capsicum annuum L.), antioxidant capacity, and intestinal bioaccessibility by Hervert-Hernández D1, Sáyago-Ayerdi SG, Goñi I.(PubMed)
(4) Characterisation of antioxidant compounds in sweet bell pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) under organic and conventional growing systems by Hallmann E1, Rembiałkowska E.(PubMed)

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