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The Benefits of Black Pepper

More than a zippy spice that accents bland foods, black pepper has legitimate health benefits as well. Find out what makes it worth an extra shake on your favorite foods, and try out the recipe!

Black pepper is the most popular spice in the world, and black, green and white peppercorns all come from the black pepper plant (Piper nigrum), native to Asia. Black pepper is the whole, partially ripened fruit; green is the unripe fruit; and white is the peeled seed.

Black pepper can provide you with serious health benefits: it is a proven antibacterial agent, and compounds in this spice help protect the integrity of DNA as well, making it a possible weapon against cancer.

Keep in mind that black pepper can irritate the GI tract, urinary tract, and prostate, and shouldn’t be consumed frequently in quantity.

Try adding some black pepper to the Tuscan Kale Salad recipe!

 

Black Pepper: More Than a Spice

Black pepper is perhaps the most popular spice in the world, and black, green and white peppercorns all come from the black pepper plant (Piper nigrum), native to Asia. Black pepper is the whole, partially ripened fruit; green is the unripe fruit; and white pepper is derived from the peeled seed. Some reasons to eat black pepper?

  1. It is a proven antibacterial agent.
  2. It contains compounds that help maintain the integrity of DNA, possibly providing some protection against cancer.
  3. It has been known to help calm digestive issues - it helps signal the stomach to produce more hydrochloric acid, which aids in protein digestion. This, in turn, can help address heartburn, indigestion, gas, diarrhea and constipation.
  4. It can promote detoxification via sweating and increased urination, while the outer layer of peppercorns facilitates the breakdown of fat cells.

It also provides manganese, iron and vitamin K, and is a good source of dietary fiber.

Keep in mind that black pepper can irritate the GI tract, urinary tract, and prostate, and shouldn't be consumed frequently in quantity.

For the best flavor, choose whole peppercorns that you can mill before adding to dishes, and add pepper just before removing the dish from heat to ensure best flavor.

Peppercorn – Spices in the Kitchen (Video)

Dr. Weil discusses peppercorn and the various forms pepper comes in - black, green, and white pepper. Peppercorn is the whole, partially ripened fruit (or unripe fruit in the case of green pepper) of the pepper plant, native to Asia. Black pepper has been used to calm digestive issues - heartburn, indigestion, gas - and aid in the absorption of turmeric.

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