Peppers, capsicum annum, belong to the Solanacee family, widely used in cooking because they can be very versatile and able to make all dishes more colorful, they have also important healthful properties. First of all, peppers contain mineral salts such as magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, iron and calcium, but they are also an important source of vitamins such as A, group B, E but especially C.
Moreover, red peppers have a high quantity of beta carotene with a powerful antioxidant action, useful to counteract the free radicals and the aging processes, ideal for the health of skin and eyesight.
In addition to this, a research performed by a team of the Tufts University, Massachusetts, and published in 2017 on the journal Cancer Prevention Research has highlighted that a carotenoid, called beta-criptoxantina and contained in red pepper, is able to decrease the growth of the lung cancer in smokers or in those people who are exposed to cigarette smoke by counteracting the action of nicotine that, on the contrary, is supposed to accelerate the growth of lung cancer. For what concerns the intake of antioxidant and vitamin C, you can consider that 100 g of red peppers give more than double the daily requirement of vitamin C and more than half the requirement of antioxidants. Peppers are 90% water and thanks to fibers contained in these vegetables they are a very healthful choice in order to give a sense of satiety and to improve the bowel functionalities against constipation. The ideal would be to eat raw red peppers, cut into strips and dressed with a little olive oil that promotes the absorption of vitamins and antioxidants. Peppers are sometimes indigestible, this is caused by some substances such as cellulose, contained in the peel, and solanine, contained in peel and seeds and that at a very high dosage could be toxic. By cooking peppers, you can remove most of the solanine, alternatively you can remove the peel and the seeds. Finally, it is better to avoid peppers in children under 10-12 because they are less solanine tolerant and solanine results toxic at lower dosage than adults. Avoid peppers also in case of allergies to peppers, in fact these vegetables contain some allergens that can cause particular reactions in predisposed people from nausea to dermatitis until anaphylactic shock.