Obviously, chillis are hot — some more so than others (I’m looking at you, Carolina Reapers) — so it’s no real surprise that a new study has shown that even the most chilled-out chilli can increase your metabolic rate, helping you literally burn over 100 extra calories each day.
The study looked at how capsicum extract (still part of the chilli family) impacted a resting metabolic rate. Specifically, they looked at capsaicinoids, the compound that makes chillis hot. Coating 2mg of capsaicinoids in a capsule, the authors were able to test the effectiveness of this hot compound without any burning mouths.
What they found was that just 2mg of capsaicinoids helped participants burn an extra 116 calories per day compared to a placebo.
The good news for those of sensitive palate is that you don’t even have to start loading up on the hot chillis to get this benefit: a capsicum will do. Capsicums are also high in vitamins C and B6, and at 94% water they’re a great way to fill up without filling out.