Originated in America and now available in every part of world, Capsicum is now enjoyed as a vegetable, seasoning, and dressing. Capsicum are a type of pepper that have a mild pungent to sweet flavor unlike the other varieties. These peppers have a tangy taste and crunchy texture. It is easily available in different colors like purple, green, yellow, red and orange in the market.
This vegetable has a scientific name “Capsicum annuum” and well known as Shimla Mirch among Indians and sweet pepper or Bell pepper are other common name of this vegetable. Although it is not related to the well-known hill station Shimla but we love to call it by this name. It has a unique combination of tangy taste and crunchy texture as “capsaicin” a substance which controls hotness in peppers is present in it in very small amounts.
Capsicum are known as ‘Shimla Mirch‘ in Hindi, ‘Pedda Mirappa‘ in Telugu, ‘Kuda Milagai‘ in Tamil, ‘Parangi Mulagu‘ in Malayalam, ‘Donne Menasinakai‘ in Kannada, ‘Bhopli Mirchi‘ in Marathi, ‘Simla Marchan‘ in Gujarati and ‘Simla Mirch‘ in Bengali.
Capsicum/Bell Pepper/Shimla Mirch Benefits for Health
1. Cardiovascular Benefits
Lycopene is an important compound which is present in these colorful vegetables and excellent for a healthy heart. Cholesterol lowering fiber is present in green capsicum which prevents the risk of heart disease. Shimla Mirch is a good source of vitamin B6, folate, and Potassium too which help in controlling the homocysteine levels which is known to lead to a higher risk of heart diseases. Capsicum is also loaded with antioxidants like vitamins A and C which fight against free radicals. The presence of potassium in it also helps in lowering the blood pressure.
2. Good for your Immune System
Your body requires vitamin C for maintaining a healthy immune system and it is also necessary for building strong collagen to support your skin and joints. Vitamin K present in these colorful Capsicums aids in the formation of blood clots. Hence for a healthy immune system, you should go for it.
3. Healthy for Eyes
Bell peppers or Shimla Mirch are a good source of vitamin A which is necessary to have healthy eyesight. Its consumption helps to improve the vision especially the night vision. Important Compounds like beta-carotene and vitamin C are also present in it which helps to prevent cataract. Alos it contains a carotenoid called lutein which is known to help prevent macular degeneration of the eyes.
4. Burns more Calories
If you are health conscious then you must have Red bell pepper in your diet. Its consumption will activate the process of thermogenesis and increase the metabolic rate of the body. It differs from other peppers as it increases the metabolism without increasing the heart rate and blood pressure thus they are very good for weight loss.
5. Anti-Cancer Properties
Shimla Mirch contains important antioxidant and anti-inflammatory nutrients which help to prevent serious diseases like cancer. It also contains supportive sulfur compounds which prevent gastric cancer and esophageal cancer. Chronic excessive inflammation and chronic unwanted oxidative stress increases the risk of cancer. The phytonutrients present in capsicum contains antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties which work to reduce the risk of cancer.
6. The Best Source of Vitamin B6 and Magnesium
Vitamin B6 and the mineral magnesium is necessary to control the excessive anxiety levels. If you are having pre-menstrual symptoms then these compounds are essential for you. Having Shimla Mirch in your food reduce bloating and prevents hypertension.
7. Cures Anemia
To prevent Iron deficiency diseases like anemia you must try Red bell peppers or Red Capsicum. It provides 300 percent of the daily vitamin C requirement to your body which is necessary for proper absorption of iron. For a person suffering from iron deficiency red peppers works as a natural remedy.
8. Source of Capsaicin
Capsaicin found in these type of peppers is responsible for imparting heat to the seeds. This chemical compound controls the triglycerides and cholesterol levels. It also helps with the immunity and kills the ulcer-causing bacteria present in the stomach.
9. Detoxifying Properties
Consumption of fresh Capsicum helps in the clearing out the congested mucous membranes present in the nose and lungs. It further detoxifies the body by eliminating the toxins through sweating.
10. Good source of Potassium
As mentioned above capsicum is a great source of potassium which helps to control the heart rate and maintains the healthy blood pressure in your body organs. This mineral further helps to enhance the muscle function and in keeping the minerals balanced in the body.
11. Cures Gastrointestinal disorders
Gastrointestinal disorders such as ulcers, dyspepsia and, diarrhea can be cured by having the fresh juice of green Capsicum in your daily routine. Chances of emphysema, asthma and other infections in the lungs will also decline by having it.
12. High Nutritional Value
Shimla Mirch is a good source of vitamin A, C and K and Red Capsicum is the best one with the highest nutritional value. The red one contains carotenoids such as beta-cryptoxanthin and lycopene. These are also rich in phytochemicals and have the good of fiber.