With COVID-19 taking a toll on the physical and even mental health of individuals, the quest to extend one's lifespan becomes more important than ever. Consuming the right kind of food is still important in such a journey. One thing you might want to add to your daily diet would be a handful of chili peppers.

Findings meant for release by the American Heart Association (AHA) on Monday at a virtual conference titled "Scientific Session 2020" showed that preliminary research on chili peppers revealed that those who consume this spice may enjoy longer lifespans. Small as they may be, chili peppers have anti-inflammatory properties. They are also rich in anti-cancer properties and have a chockfull of antioxidants. Aside from these, they also contain blood-glucose regulating properties, which greatly benefits those who are suffering from diabetes.

In a news release, the AHA revealed that these properties of chili peppers reduce the risk of dying from cancer or cardiovascular diseases.

The researchers analysed more than 570,000 health records from 4,728 studies that were conducted in relation to chili peppers and those that concern the two diseases. They found that by consuming chili peppers regularly, there is a reduction in mortality.

There was a 26 percent reduction in the risk of dying from cardiovascular diseases. The researchers noted a 25 percent reduction from "all-cause mortality," while a 23 percent reduction was noted in the risk of dying from cancer.

Dr Bo Xu, a senior author of the study, expressed surprise at how regular consumption of chili peppers reduced mortality related to "all-cause," cancer, and cardiovascular diseases. He noted that their study simply highlights how dietary factors play a huge role in the overall health of individuals.

The researchers admitted that more studies are needed to confirm the preliminary findings, notably in randomised controlled studies. It must be noted as well that despite their findings those who consume chilli peppers exhibited lower risks of dying from cancer or cardiovascular diseases, the researchers could not yet determine with certainty that chilli peppers are solely responsible for extending longevity.

A separate study published in the American College of Cardiology journal outlined some of the foods that are good for the health, particularly the heart. It suggested going for green leafy vegetables and red wine. It also advised avoiding sugary foods and refined grains as the latter can increase levels of inflammation.

Regular consumption of chili peppers can reduce the risk of dying. Photo: Pixabay