Spicy food protects you from cancer!
A daily diet rich in spices may offer protection against cancer and other illnesses. This may be the reason, researchers say, why Indians suffer lower cases of many cancers.
Timothy Bates and other researchers at the University of Nottingham, London found that capsaicin can kill cancer cells by directly targeting their energy source, indicating that people could control or prevent the onset of cancer by eating a diet rich in capsaicin.
"This is incredibly exciting and may explain why people living in countries like Mexico and India, who traditionally eat a diet that is very spicy, tend to have lower incidences of many cancers that are prevalent in the Western world," Bates said.
Researchers tested the compound in a laboratory on human lung cancer cells, which Bates said produced "startling results".
A similar test on pancreatic cancer - one of the most difficult forms of cancer to treat - also produced results hailed as "highly significant".
"As these compounds attack the very heart of the tumour cells, we believe that we have in effect discovered a fundamental 'Achilles heel' for all cancers," he said.
The researchers are currently seeking industrial partners to enable these agents to be used in clinical trials. The full results of the study can be found online in the journal Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications.