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International Hot and Spicy Food Day (January 16)

Check out the weird holiday International Hot and Spicy Food Day on Jan 16. Learn the history of spicy food & get ideas on how to celebrate.

One weird holiday on January 16 is International Hot and Spicy Food Day. Check out the other weird January holidays!

History of International Hot and Spicy Food Day

Today is a day of enjoying hot and spicy foods from all around the world. Some nations overall prefer milder food, but others typically enjoy hot and spicy dishes that will make you cry.

Spices have been added to food for over 6,000 years for two reasons. The first – and most obvious – is to add flavor to the dish. The second reason, however, is for the many health benefits of spices. For example, turmeric and cumin have been shown to have powerful properties that fight off bacteria.

Spices are also useful in fighting off inflammation. In many cultures, including Ayurvedic, garlic and ginger are used for their inflammatory properties. These spices can help fight headaches, arthritis, nausea, and even autoimmune disorders.

The Ancient Greeks imported Eastern spices like pepper, cinnamon, and ginger to the Mediterranean. Hipprocrates wrote around 400 BC about the health properties of saffron, cinnamon, thyme, mint, and more. Then later around 300 BC, Theophrastus – also known as the “Father of Botany” – wrote about 600 herbs and spices in his two books.

The Roman Empire used spices to flavor their wine and to add scents to balms and oils. This meant that some spices were used in poultices and healing plasters to help wounds heal more quickly and to lower infections.

In more modern times, data has shown that certain species of spicy foods – like cinnamon, cumin, chili peppers, and turmeric – can slow down your appetite and increase your metabolism!

Chili peppers also have an active component called capsaicin, which is known to destroy cancer cells. And according to a 2015 study conducted by the United States and China, eating spicy food 6-7 days per week lowered mortality rates by about 14%.

Most commonly, when we think about spicy foods, we often think of Asian cuisine. The spiciest food in the world typically comes from China’s Sichuan Province. The capital of Sichuan is chengdu, and it’s considered to be the hottest (food-wise) place in the world.

There are so many different chilis around the world, however, including Ghost Peppers, Red Cayenne Pepper, Serrano, Carolina Reapers, Habanero, Guajillo, Poblano, Peppadew, and more!

Thanks to modern technology, it’s easy to get hot and spicy food from all around the world straight to our homes. Between ordering out or making it yourself, you can test some very hot and spicy foods today!

Ideas for International Hot and Spicy Food Day

Here are a bunch of hot and spicy recipes you can try out!

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