Good news for those who like things spicy: A study in PLOS ONE found that subjects who regularly ate hot red chili peppers reduced their risk of an early death by 13% compared with those who preferred milder cuisine. Researchers speculate the main ingredient, capsaicin, could have a positive effect on gut bacteria or may affect the cellular mechanisms that regulate blood flow.

The study, done by the Larner College of Medicine at the University of Vermont, looked at National Health and Nutritional Examination Survey III data covering more than 16,000 Americans over up to 23 years, and found that hot chili peppers could be a factor in living longer.