It helps you drop weight, relieves pain and even fights cancer
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What’s on my plate? Chillies. The chilli peppers are the fruits of capsicum pepper plants. There are hundreds of different varieties that are indigenous to India, popular ones being Bhavnagiri mirch, Mathania, Bhut Jolokia, Guntur Sannam, Kashmiri Laal Mirch, Bihari Hari Mirch, Bedki, Dhani, among others. 

Superpower: Known for its hot and pungent flavour, chillies are minor ingredients in most dishes. Chillies have a balanced amount of minerals and vitamins that help promote weight loss and relieve pain. Chili peppers are rich in antioxidant plant compounds that have been linked with various health benefits. Capsanthin, the main carotenoid in red chili peppers and responsible for their red colour, is one such powerful antioxidant that may act against cancer. Capsaicin, the main bioactive plant compound in chili peppers, binds with pain receptors to provide pain relief; Capsaicin can promote weight loss by reducing appetite and increasing fat burning

Where to buy: Your local vegetable vendor will have fresh chillies of the variety that is native to your area, but dried and powdered version of popular chillies are available at supermarkets. And then there are indigenous websites from where you can order dried, powdered or pickled versions of chillies from their place of origin. 

Eat this: Chillies are eaten raw, cooked, or dried and powdered. Chillies are handy in most cuisines. The Rajasthani Laal Maas or the Andhra Rassam or a Thetcha wouldn’t be possible without chillies. From an Oriental Chilli Chicken preparation to adding a kick of spice to yummy sweet desserts and jams and making snacks more flavourful, this nifty spice can do it all.

Discover More Superfoods
Rich in nutritional value, superfoods are the easiest way to boost the health quotient of your daily meals. To discover more superfood ingredients, check out the rest of our superfood series:
Amla: This superfood can fix every part of your body! Don't believe us? Read on to find out the health benefits of amla.

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Ashwagandha: Can’t get sleep? Check out the sleep-inducing and other health-promoting properties of the Ayurveda-approved Ashwagandha.

Basil or Tulsi: Apart from simply adding flavor to meals, basil brings with it several medicinal properties. Check out the number of health conditions for which basil can come to your rescue.

Black Carrots: You’ve seen the red ones and you’ve seen the orange ones, but ever witnessed black carrots? Check out how they look and their many health benefits.

Brahmi: Are you afraid of the increasing rates of Alzheimer’s disease? Include this superfood in your diet to boost your brain health. Read about the other health benefits of Brahmi.

Camu Camu: One of the richest sources of Vitamin C, this superfood comes all the way from the Amazon rainforest! Read about its health benefits.

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Chia Seeds: This Mexican native is now being used in many Indian kitchens. Check out the various health benefits of chia seeds.

Dandelion: Not only do they brighten up your garden, but dandelions also boost your health. Confused about how you can include this flower in your diet? We have answers for you right here.

Hog Plum: Looking for a remedy to cure ulcers? Tired of getting diarrhea every time you eat out? Hog plum can come to your rescue! Check out the amazing health benefits of this not so popular superfood.

Jamun: Apart from tinting your tongue purple, jamun has several medicinal properties. Here’s why you must include jamun in your diet.

Kale: Coming across a lot of kale in salads, pizza toppings, and even chips? Check out why kale has suddenly topped the charts for being a healthy option.

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Karela: Reading this will prevent you from screwing up your face every time someone mentions karela.  

Kokum: Along with being a refreshing summer drink, kokum also helps you shed extra kilos. Find out more about the sour and fruity kokum.

Makhana or Lotus Seeds: It is rapidly becoming the choice of snack for weight watchers. Check out the nutrient profile of this incredible superfood.

Moringa or Drumstick: Looking to boost your iron and calcium levels? Don’t restrict yourself to just meat and milk. Know more about moringa and how this superfood can be made a part of your diet.

Mushrooms: These fungi are loaded with nutrients. Click here to know why you should be consuming them more often.

Muskmelon: The juicy and aromatic muskmelon has several health-boosting properties. Find out more about this nutritious fruit.

Ragi: This grain has made its way into the plates of many. From ragi dosa and idli to ragi porridge, it is being promoted in the diets of old and young. Find out why health experts are recommending this superfood.

Sabja: Slurped a tall glass of falooda? If it had sabja seeds, you have no reason to feel guilty. Click here to know why!

Sacha Inchi: These nut-like seeds are rich in omega-3. Check out the other health benefits they have in store for you!

Sweet Potato: A rich source of Vitamin A and fiber, sweet potato is a great alternative to the white potato. Take a look at all the reasons why you need to include it in your diet.

Tofu: Often known as the vegan cousin of paneer, tofu is derived from soybean and comes loaded with protein and minerals. Read more about the health benefits of tofu.

Turmeric: Think twice before you say no to “haldi wala doodh”. Find out why your grandma trusts turmeric for every infection.

Zucchini: Did you know that you can use your favorite zucchini not only in pasta and pizza but also in a cake? Wondering how it’s possible? Click here to know more.


Image courtesy: Shutterstock

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