Researchers recently found that eating spicy foods can lead to a longer life. Well, grab some hot chile peppers, because they could also be the key to a healthier diet.
The professors who published the piece found that the stomach stretches when it is full, and chiles stretch the gastric nerves, simulating that sated feeling. “The stomach stretches when it is full, which activates nerves in the stomach to tell the body that it has had enough food,” Amanda Page, an associate professor and senior research fellow at the University of Adelaide School of Medicine, wrote. “We found that this activation is regulated through hot chile pepper or TRPV1 receptors.”
TRPV1, which stands for transient receptor potential vanilloid 1, is a protein that detects heat and pain and regulates body temperature.
“It’s exciting that we now know more about the TRPV1 receptor pathway and that the consumption of capsaicin may be able to prevent overeating through an action on nerves in the stomach,” Stephen Kentish, another author and fellow at the University of Adelaide’s School of Medicine, said. “The next stage of research will involve investigation of the mechanisms behind TRPV1 receptor activation with the aim of developing a more palatable therapy.”