Individuals who frequently consume chili peppers are more likely to live longer according to a new study presented at the American Health Association’s Scientific Sessions 2020. Researchers determined the results from 4,729 studies in five global health databases. Records of more than 570,000 participants from different countries were compared. The records showed that people who ate chili peppers have reduced cardiovascular mortality by 26%, reduced cancer mortality by 23%, and reduced all-cause mortality by 25% compared to people who never or rarely eat chilis.

Preliminary studies have discovered that chilis have anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, anti-cancer, and blood glucose regulating properties. This is due to its active component “capsaicin” that gives the characteristics of spiciness and burning sensation. “We were surprised to find that in these previously published studies, regular consumption of chili pepper was associated with an overall risk-reduction of all-cause, cardiovascular disease and cancer mortality,” said by its senior author Bo Xu, Cleveland Clinic’s Heart, Vascular & Thoracic Institute cardiologist. He added that even though the data is showing that people who consume chilis on a regular basis have lower risks of acquiring certain diseases, it cannot be concluded that it is solely because of it. Factors such as diet and lifestyle play an important role as well. The team continues to study the data and plans to publish a full paper once finished.