By Jenny Everett, SELF magazine
Hey there, hot stuff!
On Wednesday, the folks at Tabasco offered Healthy SELF a virtual tour of their Avery Island, La., headquarters, where they have been brewing and bottling their iconic hot sauce since the 1860s.
Throughout the hour-long tour, we were impressed by the healthy perks hidden in that slim red bottle. Here are 5 good-for-you reasons to hit the sauce:
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1. It's pure. Tabasco has zero calories, zero salt and zero artificial sketchiness. That beautiful color isn't dye -- it's the true color of the peppers, which the Avery Island hot sauce engineers match against a wooden dowel to make sure they're the perfect shade of ripe red. The only ingredients: Aged pepper mash, distilled vinegar and a touch of Avery Island salt.
2. It's not packed with salt. One bottle of Tabasco is less than 2 percent salt. Not all hot sauces are this low in sodium, so read your labels!
3. It helps stoke your metabolism. Some studies have shown that capsaicin, the compound that gives chili peppers their spicy kick, creates enough heat to raise your body temperature, which helps you burn more calories -- approximately an 8 percent bump -- immediately following a meal.
4. It keeps you satisfied. In one study, subjects who had hot sauce with an appetizer consumed about 200 fewer calories when the main course came around, compared to subjects who didn't have any capsaicin.
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5. It makes healthy dishes extra delicious. Add hot sauce to fish, eggs, salad dressings or barbecue sauce to add bonus flavor, minus the calories. For inspiration, click here to browse thousands of recipes (some of these aren't the healthiest, so get creative and steal ideas for your own low-cal versions). And here's an amazing SELF recipe for Cajun Turkey Cheeseburgers with Tabasco Ketchup.
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Photo Credit: countrystore.tabasco.com