Herbal Supplements

What are cayenne supplements used for?

A Answers (2)

  • ADavid Hoffmann, Integrative Medicine, answered

    The well-known spice Cayenne is a very stimulating herb for both the circulatory and digestive systems.  Cayenne may be helpful in cases of gas and bloating.  It may also be helpful for lack of circulation with symptoms of cold hands and feet and even frostbite.  It is also a valuable remedy for warding off colds.


    Externally, cayenne is applied to the skin where increased circulation or heat is needed.  It combines well as a gargle for laryngitis.  This combination also makes a good wash for the skin to kill or inhibit the growth of unwanted bacteria or virus.


    Research has shown that one of the components of cayenne, capsaicin, blocks the transmission of pain and itching in the skin.  Capsaicin cream may be effective in relieving the severe stabbing pain associated with nerve disorders that affect the face.  


    Cayenne has long been used as a spice.  First introduced to Europe by Christopher Columbus, the spice was used by Native Americans that live just south of the Mexican border as early as 700 B.C.  Here it was very commonly combined with chocolate, which was considered a treat given mostly to Aztec royalty. Cayenne is a small pepper that comes in a number of different varieties within the species Capsicum annuum.  These different species are more commonly known as different kitchen spices such as cayenne, paprika, and chile powder.

  • Low back pain (topical plaster) - Good evidence suggests that cayenne may reduce lower back pain when applied to the skin. Additional research is needed to reach a strong conclusion about dose, duration, and safety.

    Post-operative nausea / vomiting (plaster at acupoint) - Capsicum plaster at acupoints, an alternative to acupuncture, has been studied as a means to reduce postoperative nausea and vomiting with promising results. Based on available studies, Capsicum plaster at P6 or K-D2 may reduce postoperative nausea, vomiting, and the need for anti-nausea medications. Additional study is needed to understand the mechanism of action and appropriate dosing.

    Post-operative pain (plaster at acupoint) - Cayenne plasters at acupoints reduced postoperative pain and the need for pain-relieving medications. Further study on dose, duration, and safety is still required.

    You should read product labels, and discuss all therapies with a qualified healthcare provider. Natural Standard information does not constitute medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

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