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Marinas Menu: NATIONAL SPICY FOOD DAY is August 19th

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Wednesday, August 19th marks "National Spicy Food Day." Whether you're a fan of Mexican, Asian or Indian food or you like to spice up your favorite dishes, there's good news about eating hot and healthy.

Chili peppers in particular are thought to give the body a metabolic boost and help to burn calories faster. A main compound in the pepper called capsaicin can also reduce the body's cravings for fatty, salty and sweet foods. Researchers also believe that capsaicin may reduce the damaging effects of "bad cholesterol" and could fight inflammation, a major source of heart disease.

India is currently the major producer of chili peppers. But the vegetable has been consumed in the Americas since 7500 BC. There are many varieties and one of the hottest ones is produced in the United States, the Carolina Reaper. Fresh or dried chilis are used to make hot sauces including siracha, harissa and Tabasco sauces.

The top chefs we have covered at know just how to spice up their food. And you can feel confident that there are some health benefits when you enjoy some zesty, delicious cuisine.

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From This Author Marina Kennedy