There is probably not another flavor quite as controversial as the spicy one. From a pure chili pepper to half a tablespoon of wasabi, it’s incredible that even a small bite of spicy foods can pack such an ouch. All logic says is that you should probably give spicy foods a miss as often as possible, but those taste buds keep resisting. Fueled by the ever-growing popularity of spicy Mexican dips and piquant Indian flavors, spicy foods have flooded the food industry and are gradually turning into meal staples, especially amongst men.
In an attempt to understand the effects of spicy foods on our health and well-being, scientists examined some of them. From boosting metabolism to reducing the risk of heart diseases, the findings are unbelievable. However, there is one scientific conclusion that has every man pondering. Turns out, in addition to rousing your taste buds, eating spicy food can increase testosterone levels in men. But, let’s find out more about spicy food and testosterone.
“Some Like It Hot”: The Study
In 2015, a team of French scientists from the University of Grenoble published their study in the Journal of Physiology and Behavior. Entitled “Some Like It Hot”, the study examined the testosterone levels of 114 men following the amount of hot sauce each one consumed with a meal.
Even though the study’s results indicate a strong positive correlation between spicy food and testosterone levels, the mechanism by which this connection is possible is not clear. However, according to some anecdotal theories, spicy food may increase testosterone levels as it has the capacity of boosting your metabolism and suppressing your appetite. These two effects are known for acting on male testosterone in a positive way.
The Capsaicin Factor
Have you ever wondered what makes spicy food… spicy? Found in chili and jalapeno peppers, paprika, curry, hot sauces and much more, capsaicin is the molecule that puts hot in hot peppers. Due to its strong burning effects, capsaicin can irritate mammals, whether it’s on their skin or in their mouth.
Before the “Some Like It Hot” study, another research proved that it was not spicy food that increased testosterone levels rather than the capsaicin each one of them contains. In fact, scientists concluded that capsaicin is powerful enough to boost testosterone levels in adult and pubertal mice alike. Also, the authors note that capsaicin has long been associated with factors related to testosterone such as aggression, the need for dominance and daring behavior. However, since this experimental study was never performed on humans, its results are a bit ambiguous.
3 Ways in Which Spicy Food and Testosterone May Work
Despite the fact that the 2015 study hasn’t established the connection between spicy food testosterone, some theories made their appearance as to why this happens. Try even eating fat with spices on it go get that extra testosterone kick.
Boosting Your Metabolism and Losing Weight
As mentioned earlier, there is a hypothesis according to which spicy food affects your metabolism and, in its turn, this essential factor affects your testosterone levels. From the moment capsaicin-containing foods enter your body, certain functions are set in motion. From increasing the fat-burning effect of thermogenesis in your body to enhancing the rate at which you burn calories, research proves that capsaicin-rich foods, also known as spicy food, contribute to boosting your metabolism and helping you lose weight.
The truth is that slow metabolism and excessive weight don’t meet eye-to-eye with high testosterone levels. That said, it becomes evident how spicy food may contribute to the increase of testosterone levels in men.
Getting Rid Of Free Radicals
At the same time, capsaicin comes with potent antioxidant properties. What does this mean for your testosterone? According to one study, the antioxidant nature of this molecule can protect lipids and lipid-based compounds such as the hormone testosterone against peroxidation by free radicals. In other words, capsaicin prevents your testosterone from being broken down or oxidized.
Cutting Back Your Appetite
The healthier your weight is, the higher your testosterone, right? According to research, spicy foods such as the red pepper can also cut back your appetite and help you maintain a healthy weight. In its turn, balanced weight promotes a balanced testosterone production.
The Final Verdict
At the end of the day, it seems that testosterone boosters are not the only answer to men who want to boost the hormone’s levels in their body. Foods boost your testosterone and Spicy food can also do the trick while adding a zesty flair to your meal. So, until research proves otherwise, it’s worth to stock up on some salsa. Below you can try some ghost pepper nuts, but be careful!