(Natural News) Cayenne peppers (Capsicum annuum) have an impressive nutrient profile and they are often used to flavor various dishes. But did you know that preppers also use cayenne peppers to make an herbal salve that can help keep their feet warm? (h/t to AskAPrepper.com)
Keeping your feet warm is crucial to long-term foot health. But as you get older, the circulation in your feet can decline. To remedy this, preppers use cayenne salve keep their feet warm during cold days.
Instead of buying cayenne salve at your local pharmacy or supermarket, it’s cheaper to make your own. A DIY cayenne salve can be also used to ease back and neck pain. This remedy works by warming the muscles and loosening them up.
Cayenne salve works the same way on your feet. If you don’t have cayenne peppers on hand, you can use other kinds of chili peppers that contain capsaicin.
Do take note that you need to be careful about using peppers that are too high on the Scoville scale because they might burn your skin. Meanwhile, peppers on the low end of the scale might not be hot enough to produce an effective salve.
Alternatively, you can use homemade peppers to make the cayenne salve. Just dry the peppers first on a dehydrator or in the oven to remove all water, then use a grinder to turn them to cayenne powder.
If you don’t want to apply cayenne powder to your feet, you can eat hot peppers to stay warm. Consuming hot peppers helps warm up your whole body because they contain the active ingredient capsaicin.
Capsaicin gives hot peppers their medicinal properties. This active ingredient also gives peppers their hot taste. How hot a cayenne pepper tastes depends on its capsaicin content. The more capsaicin a cayenne pepper contains, the hotter it is.
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Additionally, capsaicin makes your blood vessels to dilate, which results in extra blood flow that provides warmth to your hands and feet. While some people feel the effect immediately, others can feel the heat increase over time.
Hot peppers are also nutritious. They contain many anti-inflammatories, antioxidants, and vitamins.
Use cayenne powder to keep your feet warm
The quickest way to use hot pepper to warm up is to sprinkle a bit of cayenne pepper powder directly on your feet. Alternatively, you can also add some powder into your socks.
You can control the amount of cayenne powder that you spread on your feet by combining the powder with a small amount of cornstarch. Start with 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper and 1/4 cup of cornstarch or foot powder. Mix it well and add a teaspoon of the mixture into each sock.
Gently move the sock around to evenly distribute the powder. Alternatively, you could also shake the powder evenly onto your feet from a sifter or a shaker jar. Applying powder directly to your feet will help keep your feet warm and dry. Use this method on a cold, wet day, or if you’re working outdoors on a snowy day. (Related: Foot care: An often forgotten practice when SHTF.)
Recipe for cayenne pepper salve
To make your own cayenne pepper salve, you’ll need a crockpot, an eight-ounce Mason jar, and a small heatproof jar. You’ll use these tools to infuse the oil and melt the beeswax.
- 2 tablespoons (tbsp) cayenne powder
- 1/2 cup olive oil or other carrier oil
- 1/2 ounces of beeswax
- Put one to two inches of warm water in the bottom of your crockpot, then set it on medium.
- Place the beeswax into a small heatproof jar, then pour the olive oil into the Mason jar.
- Add the cayenne powder to the oil and mix well. Place the jar with oil and pepper into the crockpot. Put the lid on loosely to keep condensation out of the jar. Cover the crockpot, then let it heat gently for four 4 hours. You can also infuse it on low overnight.
- Remove the lid and place the jar with the beeswax into the crockpot. Let the jar warm until the wax melts.
- Remove the jars from the crockpot, dry off the outside of the jars, then pour the oil through cheesecloth or a strainer. This step is optional but you can do it if you want to remove the pepper from the mixture.
- Stir the infused oil into the wax slowly, then keep stirring until the wax and oil are completely mixed.
- Pour the salve into small jars or salve tins, then let them cool.
- Label the cayenne pepper salve, then store in a cool, dark place until you need to use it.
Guidelines for using cayenne pepper
- Wash your hands thoroughly after working with hot peppers. Even a minuscule speck left on your finger will cause a painful burning sensation if you accidentally touch your eyes.
- Cayenne pepper may stain your socks and your feet, so use an old pair of socks that you don’t mind getting dirty.
- Never use cayenne pepper salve on skin with cuts or open wounds.
- Use cayenne powder or salve sparingly at first because it can warm more than expected. Gradually increase the quantity of powder or salve you use until you find the right amount for you.
Make your own cayenne pepper salve if you need a natural pain reliever that can also keep you warm on a cold day.