¿El ají es malo?

A los peruanos nos encanta comer ají. Nuestro país cuenta con una inmensa variedad de estos frutos y lo agregamos en casi todos nuestros platos. Sin él nuestra comida no tendría el mismo sabor. Pero más allá de nuestras costumbres, ¿Sabían que al consumir algo picante el sistema nervioso hace que nuestro cuerpo produzca más endorfinas, lo cual produce sensaciones de satisfacción y bienestar? Pues sí, así como el chocolate y realizar deporte (moderadamente), el comer ají nos motiva y ayuda a estar más alegres. Tal vez por eso es que los peruanos lo tenemos como un ingrediente infaltable.

Hay algo súper importante que debemos tener en cuenta. El picante no es un sabor, sino una sensación, ya que no poseemos una papila gustativa específica para este. Es por eso que cuando comemos algún tipo de ají todas las papilas gustativas se activan y producimos mayor salivación.

Otro de los beneficios de este alimento es la reducción del peso en las personas. ¿Se preguntan cómo es que ocurre esto? Lo que pasa es que esta sustancia picante, llamada capsaicina, produce un efecto termogénico en nuestro cuerpo, este entra en calor, acelera el metabolismo y ayudar a quemar así más calorías. Es por eso que cuando comemos algún tipo de ají empezamos a sudar. Sin embargo, no podemos decir que es un alimento milagroso y que con solo comerlo vamos a bajar de peso. Tengan en cuenta que la capsaicina sólo acelera el metabolismo por un par de horas después de ser consumida. Por eso no sería recomendable reemplazar el ejercicio o comer saludablemente por el ají.

Existen varios estudios donde se obtuvo que la capsaicina tiene efectos analgésicos, anticancerígenos, antiinflamatorios y antioxidantes.

Así que no hay que tener miedo de agregarlo en nuestras comidas, pero no en exceso. Como sabrán, todo exceso siempre es malo. Deben tener en cuenta que en algunas enfermedades el ají debe ser evitado o prohibido, pero no se dejen llevar por mitos, lo que leen en internet (que no tenga una fuente científica) o por lo que les dicen otras personas, siempre es recomendable que visiten a un nutricionista.

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