Properties and Benefits of Bell peppers: Sweet and full of flavour, bell peppers are a delicious as well as nutritious choice for a hot summer day. Bell peppers are called sweet peppers or simply peppers in the UK and capsicum in New Zeeland and Australia. The term capsicum is derived from the name of the species they belong to, Capsicum Annuum. However, unlike all other pepper varieties belonging to the same genus, bell peppers lack a certain substance called capsaicin, a natural compound responsible for the peppers’ hotness and thus have a rather sweet flavour.
But, most importantly, they list an impressive number of nutrients, widely known for their efficiency in the prevention of a remarkable variety of medical conditions. Or simply put, bell peppers are mighty health-friendly. They are actually one of the best sources of vitamin C we can include in our daily diet, as well as a great source of B vitamins.
Bell peppers are quite versatile vegetables and can be consumed raw, in salads, or cooked in various deliciously surprising dishes. As a bonus, they are very attractive: not only do they have an interesting bell shape, but they come in a variety of colours as well, ranging from green, yellow and red to orange, brown, white and even purple. Though we may have doubts as far as some of the colours are concerned, the truth is a rainbow of bell peppers will certainly make any dish look more appealing.
Even more important, bell peppers will make you look contribute to a slimmer waistline. With merely 31 kcal/100 g, they are definitely not a threat to your waistline. If you are not a big fan of raw vegetables, then you can easily turn bell peppers into a delicious stew without fear of extra pounds.
Although they lack capsaicin, an analgesic, antibacterial and anticarcinogenic natural substance, the red and green varieties are very rich in vitamin C, probably the most potent natural anti-inflammatory and antioxidant.
And if you are interested in looking young and fresh, then a high intake of vitamin C is the best way of achieving this. Why? Because it is the one substance crucial for the synthesis of collagen, the main structural protein that ensures the integrity of our blood vessels, skin, internal organs and bones and helps our skin look wrinkle-free.
In addition to this, regular consumption of foods rich in vitamin C helps prevent scurvy, a dangerous disease caused by vitamin C deficiency and helps boost immunity. Moreover, it is scientifically proven that vitamin C is very efficient in neutralizing the damaging effects of free radicals and limit their damage to cells and DNA considerably.
Bell peppers contain significant amounts of vitamin A as well. Vitamin A plays a crucial role in cell growth, is important for beautiful skin and essential for good vision. Bell peppers have a wide range of minerals as well, which are essential for good health and overall vitality. Magnesium and potassium, for instance, are good for our cardiovascular health and selenium helps produce thyroid hormones. Zinc strengthens our immune system while iron prevents anaemia.
Overall, bell peppers make an excellent choice for any meal. They are both delicious and nutritious and surprisingly versatile vegetables. If their sweetness does not appeal to you, you can always choose unripe ones which have a slightly bitter taste, but just as many nutrients.
Bell peppers make an ideal stew and give rice dishes an exquisite aroma. They are delicious when baked and make for a refreshing, slightly juicy and rather sweet summer salad. But most importantly, bell peppers are highly nutritious which makes them an ideal choice.