People who like spicy food eat less salt, study finds

EMBED </>More Videos

A recent study published in the American Heart Association's journal "Hypertension" found people who enjoyed eating spicy foods not only preferred less salty food, but ate an estimated half teaspoon less of it per day - and had lower blood pressure. (KABC)

Spicy foods might not only add oomph to your meals, but they may be giving your health a boost, too.

A recent study published in the American Heart Association's journal "Hypertension" found people who enjoyed eating spicy foods not only preferred less salty food, but ate an estimated half teaspoon less of it per day and had lower blood pressure.

A half-teaspoon of salt has 1150 milligrams of sodium. There is a 2300 milligram daily maximum recommended by the American Heart Association.

"The researchers found that the spiciness from the hot peppers seems to activate a certain part of the brain that perceives saltiness, potentially tricking the brain into thinking that the food was saltier than it was, and experts think that this might be a good strategy for limiting your salt intake," said Consumer Reports Health Editor Julia Calderone.

Too much sodium can increase the risk of high blood pressure, which can lead to heart disease, kidney disease and stroke, but one prescription for better health could already be in your kitchen.
Related Topics:
healthhealthsodiumblood pressurecooking
(Copyright ©2018 KABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.)