Foods that Warm You Up

Hot peppers will warm you up in a flash!

Kelly Rossiter / DCL

If you've ever wondered why the cuisine in hot climates is often distinguished by a high degree of spiciness, the answer may come in the guise of a nifty little trick known in some circles as diet-induced thermogenesis. Also known as: the generation of body heat that occurs from eating. Through normal digestion, absorption, and metabolization of food, the body converts food calories to heat. Burning calories can literally warm you up.

In hot weather, the increase in body temperature makes you feel cooler by decreasing the temperature difference between you and the air around you, as well as by inducing the body to sweat, which cools the body when the perspiration evaporates. In cold weather, though, the increase in body temperature can make you feel plain old warm and cozy.

Other foods have similar thermogenic effects, resulting in increased feelings of warmth. Keep reading to learn five foods that have been found to turn up the body heat.