Phytochemical constituents and biological properties of domesticated capsicum species: a review
Pepper (Capsicum spp) is cultivated and consumed in almost every region of the world both as fresh vegetable and dried spice. Capsicum and its different varieties possess many valuable properties which distinguish them from other vegetables and in many food items as a spice for its strong pungent flavor that is produced during the secondary metabolism of the plant.
Capsicum fruit exhibits a multiple color profile due to the presence of carotenoids which can be used as a natural coloring agent and antioxidant. Almost all the parts of the capsicum are considered a rich source of health-related bioactive compounds including polyphenols, flavonoids, and other aromatic compounds. One of the important biological properties of capsicum is its ability to act as antioxidants to reduce oxidative stress leading to the prevention of several degenerative diseases. The functional compounds of capsicum exhibit excellent antimicrobial properties, particularly against gram-positive pathogenic microorganisms. The nutraceutical functionality of phytogenic compounds obtained from capsicum also confirms the anticarcinogenic and cardio-preventive effectiveness. The essential oils from capsicum are also being used as anti-aging substances in cosmetic products.
Accordingly, this article is an attempt to provide an overview of the chemical and functional properties of the bioactive compounds sourced from capsicum and their effective utilization in the medicine, food, agricultural, cosmetic, and textile industries.
Keywords: Capsicum, capsaicinoids, capsaicin, carotenoids, pungency
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