3 min read

We've all heard the rumor that spicy foods help to burn calories. While we know there are certain supplements that speed up metabolism, are there certain foods? Does spicy food raise your metabolism

What Is Metabolism?

Metabolism is the amount of energy or calories needed by your body to maintain itself throughout the day. Through the biochemical process, calories in the food and beverages you consume are added with oxygen to release all of the energy that the body needs to properly function.

How Does Metabolism Work?

A person with a higher metabolism due to working out will be able to eat more calories daily than another person with the same weight and height that does not workout.

What is the Research on Spicy Food and Metabolism?

Research shows that on average, a meal containing a spicy dish, like a bowl of chili, can temporarily increase metabolism, spicy foods have also had the tendency to increase feelings of satisfaction.

 Are You Eating Spicy Food?

If you eat chili peppers regularly over time the effect on your metabolism will decrease. The more you get into the habit of eating spicy food, you gradually build up a tolerance and the less of an effect they version of the same effect. For example, both ginger and black pepper are spicy foods that at least, temporarily boost metabolism. 

What is the Effect of Spicy Food on Metabolism?

Spicy foods have capsaicin that is known to increase your body temperature. The process by which the heat is produced is called thermogenesis. It is the same reason that your body temperature goes up and you break a sweat when you go for a run or a walk. Your metabolism speeds up as your body burns calories to generate heat.

Spicy Food and Thermogenesis.

Insulin levels after eating may be responsible for diet induced thermogenesis. “Thermogenic” means heat-producing. When your body burns calories, it generates more heat, so in turn, supplements that boost metabolism or fat burning are considered thermogenic food supplements.

Does Thermogenesis Burn Fat?

Thermogenesis does break down some body fat. Capsaicin is in spicy foods. One theory about how capsaicin affects how metabolism burns fat. It is very important to note that while the effects of spicy food are real, they are also temporary. For a truly permanent change to your metabolism, you would need to change your genes since we inherit most of what determines how our metabolism works. Even though spicy foods have certain thermogenic properties. Unfortunately, eating spicy food will not permanently change your metabolism. So, the effects of spicy food raising your metabolism are relatively short lived.

spicy food weight loss

 Will Spicy Food Help You Lose Weight?

Because the effect that spicy food has on metabolism is so minor, you probably won’t be able to get rid of body fat from any metabolic improvements from ghost chili peppers or any other type of food containing capsaicin. That doesn’t mean that spicy foods are completely useless for combating weight gain. Although, there are studies that have found that people who consume large amounts of chili peppers also take in fewer calories. That means that a reduced caloric intake may indicate that along with being spicy, hot peppers have some value as appetite suppressants. 

 So Does Spicy Food Raise Your Metabolism?

So, the answer to the question, does spicy food raise metabolism is actually a little more complex than it might seem at first. In the end, spicy food helps to suppress the appetite and provides temporary increasing of metabolism, causing thermogenesis to occur, and burning of calories. If you want a temporary boost of your metabolism, go for something spicy.

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