Nutrition Facts
Used in various delicious preparations, chili powder is a healthy seasoning with several health benefits. With this article, explore the nutritional facts, values and calories of chili powder.



Chili Powder

Main Name: Chili Powder
Biological Name: Capsicum annum
Hindi Name: Lal Mirch Powder
Names in other Indian languages: Milagay (Tamil), Mulaku (Malayalam), Mirapa kaya (Telugu), Marcha (Gujarati), Lanka, Lankamorich (Bengali), Mirchi (Marathi), Lanka (Oriya), Lalmirch (Urdu & Punjabi)

Whether its soups, stews, sauces, curries, marinades, enchiladas, casseroles or dry rubs for meats, chili powder has a significant position in all culinary preparations. So much so, it is easily incorporated even into the healthy and tempting burgers and pizzas. A powdered form of dried, ground chili peppers, chili powder produces different seasonings and is named depending upon the type of chili pepper used, say cayenne pepper. Besides true chili powder, you can find chili powder blend, made from a perfect mixture of cumin, salt, black pepper, paprika, cinnamon, oregano or garlic powder. Since this rich, colorful spice adds a piquant and flavorful taste to any delicacy, it is widely used in Indian dishes, Tex-Mex recipes, Chinese cuisines and Thai foods. Just a dash or two of chili powder can kick up the taste of your palate! Chili pepper is a fruit pod from a plant belonging to the Capsicum annum species and a member of the nightshade family of Solanaceae, which also includes tomato, aubergine, tobacco and others. Apart from the burning sensation and fiery hotness that chili powder provides to the dishes, it is also a powerhouse of tremendous medicinal and health benefiting properties. Let’s check out the different nutritious advantages of sprinkling a dash of this hot and strong spice.

History
A native to Central and South America, chili pepper belongs to the genus Capsicum, which is derived from the Greek word ‘Kapsimo’ meaning ‘to bite’. Hence, when eaten, the chili gives off a burning sensation. Chili pepper was widely used in the cuisines of Central and South America due to the hot and spicy flavor. Moreover, it gained popularity for its use as a decorative item, graduating to be a foodstuff and medicine. With Christopher Columbus setting on a journey from Portugal to discover spices, he landed in South America and found the chili. He named them ‘peppers’ simply because they tasted similar to black peppers. He brought them to Spain and spread them to Europe first, and then to South Asian countries, particularly India and China. Soon, it became a part of prime spices used in the local cuisines. Today, chili peppers are cultivated in all continents, with China, Turkey, Nigeria, Spain and Mexico leading the production.

Health Benefits of Chili Powder
  • Chili powder contains sufficient amount of vitamin A which fulfills one’s daily intake. Besides, it contributes to the maintenance of eyesight and takes care of bones, teeth, skin, internal membranes and reproductive systems.
  • Chili powder acts as an excellent antioxidant due to the presence of vitamin C in abundance. Vitamin C is essential for strengthening the immune system, healing injuries, and fighting against damage caused by free radicals which can otherwise increase the chances of developing harmful health conditions, like cancer and heart disease.
  • With beta carotenoids present in chili powder, they wipe out the radical bodies that can promote build-up of cholesterol, thereby leading to major heart diseases, like atherosclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
  • By acting as a detoxifier, chili powder helps in eliminating waste products from the body and increases the supply of nutrients to the tissues.
  • Chili powder stimulates the release of endorphins that act as natural pain killers; thus, relieving pain caused due to shingles, bursitis, diabetic neuropathy and muscles spasm in shoulders, and extremities.
  • Chili powder enhances the flow of fresh blood to the site of infections. This fresh blood fights against the infection while the leukocytes and white blood cells battle against the viruses.
  • Vitamin C, beta-carotene and folic acid in chili powder combine to reduce the risk of colon cancer. Furthermore, the cartonoid lycopene present in chili powder provides protection against various types of cancer.
  • Vitamin B6, present in chili powder, is known for lowering high homocysteine levels that can cause damage to blood vessels and hence increase the risk of contracting heart attacks and stroke.
  • By enhancing the metabolism rates, chili powder brings relief to nasal congestion and opens lung airways; thus, reducing the symptoms of asthma and wheezing. To add on, chili powder lessens the effects of chronic congestion amongst heavy drinkers.
  • With vitamin A present in abundance, chili powder lowers inflammation of lungs and emphysema, which occurs due to cigarette smoking that contains benzopyrene. This is known for eliminating vitamin A from the body.
  • Some other health benefits associated with consumption of chili powder include soothing stomach aches, inducing perspiration in hot climates to cool the skin, reducing triglycerides, relieving congestion and stuffiness, killing bacteria leading to stomach ulcers, enhancing blood circulation, alleviating fever, promoting weight loss, stimulating saliva production and treating headaches, sore throats and toothaches.
Chili Powder Nutrition Facts

Amount: 100 g
Total Weight: 100 g

Nutrients Amount
Basic Components  
Proteins 13 g
Water 7.8 g
Ash 8.5 g
Phytosterols 83 mg
   
Calories  
Total Calories 282
Calories From Carbohydrate 119
Calories From Fat 120
Calories From Protein 43
   
Carbohydrates  
Total Carbohydrates 50 g
Dietary Fiber 35 g
Sugar 7.2 g
   
Fats & Fatty Acids  
Total Fat 14 g
Saturated Fat 2.5 g
Monounsaturated Fat 3.2 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 8 g
Omega-3 Fatty Acids 533 mg
Omega-6 Fatty Acids 7.5 g
   
Vitamins  
Vitamin A 29650 IU
Vitamin C 700 mcg
Vitamin E 38 mg
Vitamin K 106 mcg
Thiamin 250 mcg
Riboflavin 940 mcg
Niacin 12 mg
Vitamin B6 2.1 mg
Folate 28 mcg
Choline 66.5 mg
Betaine 2.7 mg
   
Minerals  
Calcium 330 mg
Iron 17 mg
Magnesium 149 mg
Phosphorus 300 mg
Potassium 2 g
Sodium 1.6 g
Zinc 4.3 mg
Copper 1 mg
Manganese 1.7 mg
Selenium 20 mcg

How many calories in chili powder (per 100 gm)
Chili powder about 282 calories per 100 gm of weight.

How to Buy Chili Powder
  • Depending upon the variety of red chilies used to produce the powder, the color and flavor of chili powder will vary.
  • Read the labels of the chili powder packet, while purchasing commercial brands. The salt content should vary from ‘free’ to ‘30%’. Besides, some packages may also include ‘free-flowing agents’, along with additional preservatives added.
Chili Powder Storage Tips
  • Chili powder generally has a long shelf life when stored in an airtight container, away from heat and light.
  • Placing a piece of asafetida in the container of chili powder will store the spice for a longer duration.
  • When refrigerated, chili powder keeps well for one year and if kept in the freezer, it will last for up to two years.
  • Although chili powder can retain its flavor properties for up to two years, it should be used within one year for maximum taste and flavor.