Jan 162014
Tom yam kung

Tom yum kung

January 16th is International Hot and Spicy Food Day.

Since the origins of this holiday are unknown, it cannot be determined if it is internationally celebrated or if it means to partake of international spicy foods (foods from other parts of the world).

Why not both?

Today’s the day for trying that Spicy Tuna Roll, Sichuan Chicken, Jamaican Jerk Chicken, or Thai Tom yum soup.

Hot vs Spicy

Hot may refer to the actually temperature of the food but in this case people mean the pungency. The heat is caused from the raw (or cooked) food stimulating the somatosensory fibers in the mouth and sending a signal to the brain yelling,”Hot, hot,hot!” It’s a sensation rather than a taste. Chili peppers, ginger, and horseradish are good examples of hot foods.

Spicy refers to dishes that have a lot of spice or a combination of spices in them. Pumpkin pie is a spicy dessert.

Health Benefits:

  • Clearing out those sinuses due to thinning the mucus membranes (although it may aggravate it)
  • Unclogging pores due to perspiration caused from the heat
  • Some spicy-hot foods increase metabolic rate promoting weight loss
  • Improving digestion by speeding up bowel movements
  • According to some US scientists, it may reduce the risk of cancer
  • It may help improve circulation by increasing blood flow
  • Researchers in Australia found that eating lots of spicy foods helped people fall asleep quicker and sleep soundly
  • Spicy foods are usually rich in anti-oxidants

FYI: National Hot and Spicy Food Day is on August 19th.

photo courtesy of Takeaway,Wikipedia.org

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 January 16, 2014  Posted by at 12:00 am 01 January Tagged with: ,