The health benefits and uses of paprika powder.
1. Paprika Powder is a delicious spice which is made from bell peppers. These are dried out and ground to create this fine red powder.
2. Paprika is added to many delicious meals to add flavour, especially in Hungarian Goulash, sausages and Thai dishes.
3. It contains a compound called zeaxanthin which helps to naturally boost the health of the eyes. Studies show that eating paprika often can reduce the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration. It also contains Vitamin E, Lutein, and Beta Carotene, which also act as antioxidants to protect the eyes.
4. You can also purchase hot paprika which is made from spicier peppers such as chillies. This hotter version of the spice contains lots of capsaicin which can reduce inflammation in the body. This is helpful for those with chronic nerve pain or arthritis.
5. The powder is very helpful in promoting blood flow around the body by dilating the blood vessels. It contains a carotenoid called capsanthin which can reduce the risk of heart disease and high cholesterol.
6. We recommend adding paprika as a flavouring agent for meats, fish, stews, stir-fries and marinades.
7. Early studies show that paprika may reduce the spreading of cancerous tumours by activating anti-cancerous genes. The antioxidants mentioned earlier help to trigger cancer cells to commit suicide.
8. These same antioxidants also help in boosting the immune system to help the body fight disease and infections. These can be found in all kinds of spices and herbs, so be sure to get a good mixture in your diet.
9. The spice also contains a small amount of iron, Vitamin B6, C, fibre, carotenoids and trace minerals which can improve your overall health.
10. The common varieties of Paprika are either Spanish or Hungarian. Be sure to choose the right variety for your recipe, as Spanish paprika is fierier, whereas Hungarian has a gentle and sweet flavour.
11. The capsaicin in Paprika also helps to reduce blood sugar levels by improving insulin sensitivity. This is especially useful if you suffer from pre-diabetes or diabetes type 2.
12. If you suffer from anaemia then consider adding paprika to your weekly diet. The vitamin E can repair damaged blood cells, and the iron can boost haemoglobin.
13. You can also purchase smoked paprika which has a stronger and smoky flavour. This works well in rice, beans and lentil dishes.
14. Hungarian paprika is excellent for spicing up meat before adding to a delicious curry. It can impart a sweet flavour to the meat without the need for sugar or honey.