Bell peppers aren’t just delicious and a colorful vegetable to dress up a meal. These stars of the nightshade plant family come with loads of health benefits. Whether you enjoy them raw for their juicy crunch or add them to a favorite cooked dish for depth of flavor, bell pepper nutrients help our bodies strengthen and feel good in many ways.
8. Healthier Eyes
Colorful vegetable pigments of orange, yellow and red provide key nutrients for eye health called carotenoids. Bell peppers in these colors provide three main carotenoids — zeaxanthin, lutein, and beta-carotene.
Beta-carotene converts to vitamin A in the body. Among many other benefits, vitamin A supports the eye’s ability to properly focus on faraway objects. Vitamin A deficiencies can lead to myopia, also called nearsightedness. Childhood myopia cases are on the rise and a significant concern across the globe.
Carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin can help prevent chronic eye disease and lessen the risk of developing cataracts.
7. Decreased Inflammation
Bell peppers are also full of inflammation-fighting nutrients like quercetin and luteolin, both classified as flavonoids. Chronic inflammation has been linked to diseases like cancer.
Though inflammation is an important part of our body’s immune function, it’s only meant to be a temporary response to illness or injury. Modern toxins from food and the environment can cause inflammation to run rampant. The antioxidants in bell peppers help battle the free radicals that can cause inflammation to get out of control.