Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Appetite. 2014 Feb;73:183-8. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2013.11.005. Epub 2013 Nov 15.

Could capsaicinoids help to support weight management? A systematic review and meta-analysis of energy intake data.

Author information

  • 1School of Healthcare Science, John Dalton East Building, Oxford Road, Manchester M1 5GD, United Kingdom.
  • 2School of Healthcare Science, John Dalton East Building, Oxford Road, Manchester M1 5GD, United Kingdom. Electronic address:
  • 3Teagasc Food Research Centre, Ashtown, Dublin 15, Ireland.



Capsaicinoids are a group of chemicals naturally occurring in chilli peppers with bioactive properties that may help to support weight management. The aim of the present study was to conduct a meta-analysis investigating the potential effects of capsaicinoids on energy intake, to clarify previous observations and form evidence-based conclusions about possible weight management roles.


Medical databases (Medline, Web of Knowledge and Scopus) were systematically searched for papers. Search terms were: 'capsaicin(*)' or 'red pepper' or 'chilli(*)' or 'chili(*)' with 'satiety' or 'energy intake'. Of the seventy-four clinical trials identified, 10 were included, 8 of which provided results suitable to be combined in analysis (191 participants). From the studies, 19 effect sizes were extracted and analysed using MIX meta-analysis software.


Data analysis showed that capsaicinoid ingestion prior to a meal reduced ad libitum energy intake by 309.9kJ (74.0kcal) p<0.001 during the meal. Results, however, should be viewed with some caution as heterogeneity was high (I(2)=75.7%). Study findings suggest a minimum dose of 2mg of capsaicinoids is needed to contribute to reductions in ad libitum energy intake, which appears to be attributed to an altered preference for carbohydrate-rich foods over foods with a higher fat content.


Meta-anlysis findings suggest that daily consumption of capsaicinoids may contribute to weight management through reductions in energy intake. Subsequently, there may be potential for capsaicinoids to be used as long-term, natural weight-loss aids. Further long-term randomised trials are now needed to investigate these effects.


Capsaicin; Capsaicinoids; Chili; Chilli; Energy intake; Weight management

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Support Center