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The Healthy Spice: Black Pepper

Posted Mar 25 2010 12:09pm

Peppercorn close-upBlack pepper is the most widely produced and popular spice in the world, adding flavors to many cuisines from different countries and cultures. Black pepper is native to South India and is now extensively cultivated there as well as in several tropical regions.

Some people don’t know that black pepper has a lot of healthy properties. Unlike its common “table partner” salt, black pepper has the potential to make food more beneficial when used in various recipes and as a table spice.

Black pepper has the ability to enhance the function of the digestive tract, diminish the amount of gas in the intestinal tract and offers high antioxidant properties . In addition, peppercorns, and the powdered pepper derived from grinding them, can help to treat illness such as constipation, diarrhea, earache, hernia, insect bites, joint pain, liver problems, lung disease, oral abscesses, sunburn, and toothaches. It’s not necessary to use high amounts of pepper to benefit from it. All you need to do is put a little bit in your food every day.

Black pepper can improve digestion by stimulating the stomach to increase its own digestive juices, such as hydrochloric acid. This process breaks down protein in the stomach, improving its ability to be further digested. If we don’t make enough hydrochloric acid, we develop conditions like poor digestion and heartburn.

Supplements made from black pepper have been sold around the world. Most companies use the pure form of piperine, derived from the fruits of black pepper, to produce products to support the digestive system.

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