Ten Healthy Reasons to Eat Chili
Chili has long been thought of as a greasy, fat filled meal that
no health conscious person would be caught eating. Not so
anymore. Chili has become a wonderful dish full of healthy
nutrients for your body, and it definitely fits into today’s healthy
diets. The top 10 healthy reasons for eating a bowl of chili
today are listed below.
1. Chili contains lots of protein.
The meat used in cooking chili is a great source of protein for
anyone. If you happen to use beans in your chili, then they do
provide a second source of protein. Even if you’re a
vegetarian and make vegetarian chili,
it can provide a good portion of your daily protein needs.
2. Chili has a lot of fiber.
The chiles and the beans in your chili are excellent sources of
fiber. In addition to keeping you regular, fiber also slows
the rate that sugar is absorbed into the bloodstream. This
keeps your blood glucose levels from rising and falling too quickly.
3. Chili contains Vitamin C.
The chiles you use to flavor your chili, even the mild red
peppers, provide a tremendous amount of Vitamin C. If you use
a tomato base, it too can provide extra Vitamin C for you.
4. Chili is high in iron, even the veggie versions.
Chili is a great source of iron, especially the red meat
versions. Don’t worry though is you prefer turkey or even meat
free chili. The beans used to make chili are also an excellent
source of iron.
5. Chili can help you lose weight.
The capsaicin found in the chiles used to season you dish can
increase your metabolic rate simply by raising your bodily heat
production. Even sweet red peppers can increase heat
production for up to 20 minutes are eating them.
Chili can make you happy!
Chiles promote endorphin and serotonin release, both of which
inflate your mood. The capsaicin is the trigger for increasing
the serotonin and endorphins. These two raise your mood levels
so you can actually feel happier just by trying a new
chili recipe! What an
7. Chili can curb your cravings for fatty foods
Some recent research has given some proof that the capsaicin in
chiles actually curb your cravings for fatty foods and sweets.
So go ahead and make chili tonight. Season it well with lots
of freshly prepared chiles, and you have a good chance of no wanting
dessert afterwards. Who knew chili could help you control your
8. Chili can help boost your immune system.
Chiles are high in Vitamin A, which can naturally boost your
immune system. The more chiles you use in flavoring your chili
dish, the more Vitamin A you are putting into your body. The
boost to your immune system from the Vitamin A is a welcome plus
during the winter cold and flu season.
9. Chili may
help regulate blood sugar after eating.
Apparently the capsaicin in chili peppers also can help regulate
your blood sugar. A July 2006 study in the Journal of Clinical
Nutrition found that the amount of insulin that was needed to lower
patients’ blood sugar after a meal is lower if the meal contains
chile peppers. It’s true that your fiery chili is good for
10. Chili can help clear congestion.
The capsaicin in chiles stimulate mucous secretions to help clear
mucous from your stuffy nose. The next time you feel a cold
coming on, prepare a big batch of chili to help you breathe easier.
It will help keep you warm too!
I hope these healthy reasons to eat chili give you a new
perspective on an old favorite meal! Why not try making a pot
chili tonight for dinner? You will be giving your family a
boost in vitamins and minerals as well as other healthy benefits
just from a single bowl of chili.
2. The Chili Pepper Diet by Heidi Allison. Health
Communications, Inc. 2002.
3. Journal of Clinical Nutrition, July 2006.