Study: Spicy foods linked to longer life

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There's good news for people who like some spice in their meals. Turns out, spicy foods may be linked to a longer life. (KTRK)

There's good news for people who like some spice in their meals. Turns out, spicy foods may be linked to a longer life.

A new study in the British Medical Journal found that regular consumption of spicy food is associated with a lower risk of death. The study found those who ate spicy foods six to seven times a week lowered their risk of death by 14-percent.

The benefits could come from a key ingredient called capsaicin, which has been linked to fighting obesity, inflammation, and cancer.

So what is considered spicy food? The study cites using fresh and dried chili peppers, but it didn't elaborate further.

"You have to consider that when we talk about spicy food, we can mean vastly different things, with different health implications," Bio-psychologist John E. Hayes told CNN. "That spicy food could be low energy density vegetables, like kimchee. Or it could be a high energy density food like barbeque spare ribs."

The study's authors are also calling for more research to prove their theory, meaning you might want to wait before you start covering everything in hot sauce.

"This isn't an excuse to go out and eat 24 wings and then rationalize it by claiming they are going to make you live longer," said Hayes.
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