Family: Solanaceae nightshade, includes all peppers, tomato, and eggplant.
Parts Used: Fruit
All peppers have medicinal properties but cayenne seems to have the strongest properties and what is used the most for medicinal purposes.
- hemostatic (stop internal bleeding or hemorrhaging)
- carminative (aid digestion)
- anti-catarrhal (eliminate excessive mucous)
- rubefacient (stimulate and increase blood flow)
- analgesic (pain reliever)
- antispasmodic (suppresses muscle spasms)
- anti-microbial (kills microorganisms or inhibits their growth)
- thermogenic (produces heat)
- styptic (stops external bleeding)
- Circulation stimulant, warms body and extremities. Take internally or can be sprinkled in shoes, slippers and gloves or small amount rubbed into parts that need warming.
- Heart attack/stroke - give victim 1 tsp. powder mixed with 1 cup warm water or dropperful of tincture under tongue. This is great to have in an emergency first aid kit.
- Heart tonic - supports arteries, blood vessels and heart.
- Rebuilds vein structures and removes plaque from veins.
- Prevents blood clots, keeps blood flowing freely through the veins.
- Lowers cholesterol and triglyceride levels, reducing heart disease.
- Digestive aid
- Diarrhea related to infection.
- Arthritis, muscles and joints, use both internal and external.
- Cramps and menstrual pain.
- Sprains and strains.
- Pain reliever (use topically).
- Relieves the muscle pain and tenderness caused by fibromyalgia.
- Relieves pain associated with shingles, chicken pox, and herpes.
- Relieves the pain and itchiness associated with psoriasis and eczema.
- Cold and flu.
- Sore throat, respiratory congestion, tonsillitis, laryngitis.
- Oral health to prevent and heal dental issues.
- Not medicinal but cayenne is used for self defense in pepper sprays and also for pest control in the garden.
Methods of Use
- Make a tea using 1 tsp. cayenne to 1 cup warm water.
- Salve, ointment, liniment
- Include it in your meals, if you can handle the heat.
In the Garden
- Cayenne likes a bright, sunny and warm location.
- Transplant into full sun after the last frost.
- Prefers dry soil, requires little water.
- Plant next to basil and cilantro, but stay away from sweet peppers, it will make them hot.
- Use gloves when picking, pick the fruit when it is bright red.
- For dehydrating and making powder, wash with warm water and dry completely. Remove stems (keeping those gloves on) and slice in half. Place on dehydrator tray and set the temp. between 135 – 145 for 8-12 hours. I have also dried the entire pepper and once dried pull off the stem, either way works.
- Once dry, blend into a powder and store in a cool, dark location.
- Great post on growing and using hot peppers fromOld World Garden Farms.
Where to get good quality cayenne?
Herbal Legacy - Cayenne to the Rescue part II
Cayenne Benefits by Dr. Axe
Hot Pepper Pest Control from Old World Garden Farms