When it comes to a healthy lifestyle, it never hurts to turn up the heat! Jalapeno peppers have a perfect, pungent, powerful spice factor that amp up even the blandest meals. Belonging to the nightshade family (which also includes eggplants, tomatoes, and white potatoes), the jalapeno pepper originated in South America. However, it wasn’t until the 15th century that the pepper made its debut in Europe where it was used to replace black peppercorns, which were hard to get at the time. The peppers are traditionally picked unripe and green in color that, when left to mature, turn a deep crimson. Now you can find jalapeno peppers available all year round.

The impact of adding peppers to our diet reaches far beyond a little heat. Peppers are great at fighting off stubborn colds, as they contain capsaicin, a congestion-fighting chemical component; it also gives them their signature zest. The spicier a pepper is, the more capsaicin it contains. In addition to aiding a runny nose, jalapeno peppers can boost immunity and aid cardiovascular function.

Spicy foods can seem intimidating at first, especially to people who are very sensitive to flavor; rest assured that there are a plethora of ways to add jalapeno into your healthy meal plan. Chop avocado with jalapeno and garlic, add a bit of lime juice, mash it all together, and you have a simple guacamole. Ingredients like avocado can mellow out the spice, but still allow the delicious flavor to shine through. To further reduce the spiciness, remove the seeds and white membrane. Our favourite way to eat jalapenos is with eggs. We mixed jalapenos, onions, eggs, ground turkey, and cheese to make our Turkey Sunrise breakfast skillet. It’ll kick-start your morning!