Cayenne pepper – top circulation herb

by on 17/11/2012

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Few people know that to improve the circulation of blood in the body, Cayenne has little equal.

Cayenne is also known as chilli pepper,hot pepper and Tabasco pepper.

Most households throughout the West will include some form of Cayenne in the kitchen but most people probably do not realise what a powerfully healing herb it really is. It is particularly a great blood circulation stimulant. This ability to stimulate the circulation means that cayenne can be very helpful in treating conditions such as piles and varicose veins. Indeed – a great help for the whole blood circulation.

Cayenne peppers grow naturally in America and Africa, but are now cultivated world wide.

The fruit is used both in cooking and medicine, and it owes its hot flavour to a chemical called capsaicin, which comprises about 12% of the pepper.

Capsaicin was isolated by chemists more than a century ago as the main active constituent of
Cayenne. It is a great “circulatory stimulant”: it inceases blood circulation throughout the body. It may be familiar to you – you may have seen it listed in the ingredients of some pharmaceutical ointments used to relieve arthritis and muscle pain.

Dishes that include hot peppers are most common in very hot climates like southern America and Thailand. This might seem odd but it has been recently found that hot spices like Cayenne kill certain food-borne bacterium that are more likely to be present in the food of hot climates.


American Indians cultivated the chilli pepper for centuries, for medicinal uses as well as culinary.

The plant is first mentioned in western literature by a physician named Diego Alvarez Chanca who encountered it when he travelled with Columbus on his second voyage to the West Indies in 1494.

Today Cayenne is listed in many world pharmacopoeias (official drug lists), and the American Physicians Desk Reference includes several prescription drugs that contain the herb.

Uses of Cayenne

Dr Richard Schulze, a medical herbalist who studied with Dr John Christopher, says of Cayenne: “If you master only one herb in your life, master cayenne pepper. It is more powerful than any other. There is no other herb that increases the blood circulation faster than cayenne. There are none that work faster; none that work better”.

Dr Christopher himself has plenty to say about Cayenne, giving it the credit for his own amazing change in health. For most of his life, up to the age of 35, he suffered badly from – amongst other complaints – severe hardening of the arteries. In fact he had been told by medical doctors that he could not live beyond his 40th birthday.

Dr Christopher (known as Ray to most people) was drafted when 35, and registered as a consciencious objector. He was put to work caring for the sick in a military dispensary. His son, David, tells of his awakening to the power of herbs, especially cayenne pepper:

“During his time at the dispensary, Ray started his personal search for an herb that could relieve his own serious health problem, high blood pressure and hardening of the arteries, which he had suffered since adolescence.

He began working with cayenne, which is high in calcium and vitamin C.

He found that cayenne is one of the best remedies for the heart. He saw that it restores and retains the elasticity of the blood vessels, correcting or preventing hardening of the arteries and preserving the health of the circulatory system. Ray also found that cayenne equalized blood circulation and brought blood pressure to normal. He even found that cayenne was powerful enough to stop a heart attack in progress.

In later years, carrying cayenne in his herbal doctor’s bag, he never lost a person to a heart attack. He remembered one woman who had suffered from heart problems for eighteen years. She had taken powerful heart medication for more than seven years. After starting cayenne, she was able to stop this medication within months. Her varicose veins also completely cleared.”

This is not to say you should take cayenne alongside drugs for heart medication: it’s wise to be cautious in such a case. But this is what Dr Christopher reported to his son and illustrates some of the power of cayenne pepper.

Cayenne and the Veins and Arteries

At 45, 10 years after he started to take Cayenne on a daily basis, a medical examiner him told him he had the venous structure of a teenage boy! Cayenne had not only improved his circulation, it had actually improved the health of the actual arteries. He passed the medical examination with a completely clean bill of health.

Many practitioners believe that Cayenne should be added to all herbal preparations, or taken as a supplement with other herbs, as the Cayenne ensures a clear passageway through the circulatory system, letting the other herbs reach their destination more quickly.

If you need to improve your circulation, I hope this page has clearly communicated to you: cayenne is probably the best single herb you could use.

Varicose Veins, Nose Bleeds

I can report two interesting results from using cayenne pepper, which spring to my mind.

Varicose veins: An elderly lady I knew worked in her daughter’s health food shop, helping her by measuring out nuts and fruit into bags. After 20 minutes of this, she got aching in her varicose veins. I told her about how cayenne pepper was supposed to improve the circulation in the whole body. She duly started taking two or three capsules a day.

Within three weeks, she could stand all morning with no aching at all. She was amazed – and I was very satisfied!

Nose bleeds: At about the same time I returned home to my lodgings to find my landlady’s son – 19 years old – with a streaming nose bleed. He said it just wouldn’t stop. I told him about cayenne pepper and how – according to Dr Christopher – it would stop bleeding anywhere in the body.

He was ready to try anything. So I stirred a teaspoon of cayenne pepper into a small glass of water, which he drunk immediately. Within two or three minutes. The nosebleed just stopped. He was amazed, my reputation as a herbalist in that household rocketed!

Cayenne, blood and circulation

Cayenne stimulates blood circulation – instantly. It dilates arterial walls and cuts through mucus in the veins, thus increasing circulation to the extremities and helping overall to lower blood pressure. It strengthens the heart, arteries, capillaries and the nerves.

Over time it will thin the blood if it is too thick. In the west a big problem is high cholesterol, which makes the blood too thick, giving the heart a harder job.

Cayenne also regulates blood flow effectively so circulation throughout the body is even, and there is no excessive pressure in any one part. Excessive menstrual flow can be reduced and controlled with Cayenne.

Cayenne and the heart

Dr John Christopher once wrote that in 35 years of practice, and working with people and teaching, he never once lost a heart attack patient during a house call. If the patient was still breathing he would “pour down them a cup of Cayenne tea (a teaspoon of cayenne in a cup of hot water) and within minutes they are up and around.

He says that Cayenne is one of the fastest acting aids we could ever give for the heart. The warm tea opens up the cell structure and the heart benefits immediately from the Cayenne – a powerful food containing flavanoids, to heal heart cells and give protection.


Cayenne can be applied to open wounds or taken orally to stop bleeding. Nosebleeds, deep cuts, even arterial gushing will stop within seconds.

Blood pressure is equalised throughout the body so there is no excessive pressure on the haemorrhage area and it can clot naturally.

A poultice of Cayenne wrapped around a wound will ensure safe healing and will often not even leave a scar!

Internal wounds can be stopped from bleeding by drinking a cup of hot water with a teaspoon of Cayenne stirred into it. In fact, as shocking as it sounds, Cayenne has been shown to be an effective pain reliever for sufferers of stomach ulcers.

Other uses of Cayenne pepper

Cayenne is rich in carotenoids (orange and red coloring compounds), and a number of vitamins (especially A and C). Carotenoids have strong anti-oxidant properties and are receiving current interest for their protection against cancer.

Cayenne can increase libido and reverse a loss of sex drive.

It is good for sore throats, and tonsillitis. One recipe for an effective gargle is to mix one teaspoon of Cayenne, one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar and three tablespoons of clover honey in a glass of warm water. Gargle as often as necessary.

Cayenne has an invigorating effect when applied to the skin, and can be used for temporary relief of minor aches and pains of muscles and joints associated with simple backaches, arthritis, strains, bruises and sprains.

Newborn infants have reportedly been successfully resuscitated with a few drops of Cayenne administered orally.

Menstrual cramps can be relieved by Cayenne, as it warms the internal organs if taken orally. It can also be applied externally as an ointment on the abdomen if the cramps are severe.

Cayenne can be used to break up congestion and relieve coughs.

As a relief for aching feet Cayenne powder can be sprinkled inside your socks before putting them on. This will stimulate circulation, warming and invigorating the feet.


Capsules: For general support 1 capsule 3 times a day is usual.

Some practitioners recommend the tincture or mixing a small amount (starting with one sixteenth of a teaspoon, and working up to one teaspoon) of Cayenne powder in warm water to take 3 times a day. This is so the mouth experiences the hot spice and the stomach prepares itself. The mouth also absorbs much of the goodness itself, giving an immediate effect.


During pregnancy use Cayenne with caution to avoid gastrointestinal irritation.

If breast-feeding avoid Cayenne as it may pass into the breast milk, causing it to become unpalatable to the infant.

For safety, don’t take cayenne pepper alongside drugs for the circulation. This includes those for thinning the blood or for high blood pressure.


Cayenne pepper is a versatile and essential herb is one that many people already do have as a regular in the herb rack in the kitchen, but its importance is so great that everyone should consider keeping some in the medicine cabinet too. It is available in capsules, powder, tincture or oil form.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

marchig February 26, 2013 at 4:03 pm

I found your article about cayenne another herbs very interesting. But I used cayenne pepper on rice and other and found it extremely strong and burning. one can only take a minimal amount.
Where can I buy read preparations containing possibly several of the herbs you recommend ? I am particularly interested in improving blood circulation and lowering my blood pressure which variable but mostly around 160/85.I am 80 . Can not make exercise as I have had a badly done hip replacement Thsnks .


robrralph February 27, 2013 at 9:25 am

Hi there, yes this is the unfortunate side effect of taking cayenne on food etc – you can try here for products to improve circulation. Cayenne Capsules is listed as well as some other very good herbal combinations.

Good luck


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