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Cayenne Pepper/Capsicum
by Dr. Mary Lee, N. D.

Dr. Christopher, Master Herbalist, never left home without it. There was always an ample supply of Cayenne Pepper in his bag whenever he made a house call. This hot little herb is phenomenal.

According to Dr. Christopher, a heaping teaspoon of Cayenne Pepper in a cup of hot water will stop a heart attack in progress. I passed this nugget of information to a friend who has a history of heart attacks. For once he listened. When he had a massive heart attack several years ago that even his nitroglycerin couldn't stop, his wife made the "hot toddy" for him - it saved his life. He made it to the hospital and survived. Neither he, his wife, nor I believe he would be alive today if he had not drunk that cup cayenne tea.

Back to the facts - Capsicum is a catalyst herb. It’s stimulating properties speed the absorption and effectiveness of any herbs taken in combination with it, increasing their power. Capsicum is said to be unequaled for warding off diseases and equalizing blood circulation, and combined with garlic & parsley will help lower blood pressure.

Capsicum also heals ulcers. Yup. You're reading that right. Capsicum helps heal ulcers. A favorite story of mine is the one from Dr. Christopher about the husband who had endured the pain of a stomach ulcer for as long as he could stand it. This husband decided he could take no more and wanted to end his life. When he went to the medicine cabinet to get pills to do the dastardly deed, he discovered his wife had replaced all the drugs with herbs. He saw the bottle of Cayenne Pepper capsules and figured that would surely kill him, so he took a handful.

Being a considerate fellow, he didn't want his screams to disturb the neighbors, so he took an extra pillow with him to bed to muffle his screams. Was he ever surprised when his wife shook him awake the next morning and told him he was late for work! What he didn't know is that capsicum stimulates the protective mucus-forming membranes of the stomach. It was the first time in years he had slept through the night.

Capsicum is a stimulant herb and a digestive aid, helping improve digestion and soothing inflammation. It helps remove toxins from the body, relieves gastrointestinal problems including bleeding ulcers, colic, dyspepsia, flatulence and even diarrhea. It helps relieve the pain of shingles, cluster headaches, and itching palms and feet of diabetes. A little Capsicum sprinkled in water and gargled will eliminate a sore throat.

Capsicum is high in vitamins and minerals that are needed for healing. It can also be applied directly to a wound. I'm not going to tell you that it doesn't hurt, because it hurts like hell, but it will stop the bleeding. One friend sliced her thumb to the bone while cutting veggies. Brave soul that she is, she stuck it directly into cayenne pepper. Not only did she stop the bleeding, there was no scarring. A few screams, but no scarring. (I'm joking again. Yes, it burns, but only for a few minutes, though you get a lot of exercise while it's cauterizing the wound. I know this because I've done it myself, and yes, I'd do it again.)

Got a splinter? Combine Capsicum and Plantain and apply externally to draw out foreign items embedded in the skin.

Got cold feet? Sprinkle Capsicum in your socks (also helps prevent frostbite). If that's a bit strong, sprinkle it into your shoes. The heat will go through your socks.

Got questions? E-mail me!

Please note that taking one or two capsules of Capsicum is not going to do the trick. It might require seemingly large amounts (2 or 3 capsules 2 or 3 times a day) to achieve the desired results.

This information is for educational purposes only and is not meant to diagnose or treat disease. Consult your health care professional. Dr. Mary Lee is a Doctor of Naturopathy. To obtain herbs, or for more information, contact Dr Lee at