On the 6th August 2015, the media was ablaze with the exciting research conducted by the Chinese Academy of Medical Science (supported by the British Medical Journal) which confirmed that - eating a hot spicy meal up to 7 times a week could prolong life; improve health and reduce deaths from *cancer, heart disease and diabetes by 10%. Plus, Nottingham University (Queen's Medical Centre) confirmed it also aids weight loss and prevents hypothermia. Amazingly, these revelations were first reported and brought to the public's attention 30 years ago by GRAMMA'S founder (Dounne Alexander MBE), when she launched her Herbal Pepper Sauces in Harrods and Fortnum & Mason. Plus, as a passionate advocate for natural healthcare, Dounne has worked tirelessly to deliver a wealth of her ancestral knowledge and first hand experience about the 'true' health benefits of eating hot peppers and spicy foods for health and longevity. However, this latest scientific research proves beyond a doubt that she is not only decades ahead of science, but also their research to-date only covers a few health conditions; whereas Dounnes work (based on ancient folklore medicinal knowledge) covers the extensive array of benefits yet to be discovered and researched by modern scientists.
In 1987, after initiating her first health awareness campaign, the British Medical Establishment attempted to ban her health claims, insisting they were not scientifically proven. However she won her case on the proven ancient fact that Natural Foods are meant to feed & heal. She then gained the support of British medical professor Irwin Ziment (an equally passionate advocate of Hot Peppers & Spicy Foods), who was head of the American UCLA School of Medicine, and a leading specialist in heart & respiratory disorders. Professor Ziment verified Dounne's claim that the British people need to eat a 'Hot Spicy Meal' at least 3 times a week to combat this cold, damp climate, heart disease and respiratory conditions. He said: "Hot Peppers are the best 'natural remedy' and by adding it to food... it may improve both Life and Breath". Furthermore, he confirmed that the entire Chemical Industry of Cough Medicines and Expectorant Drugs were established because of the old folklore medicinal knowledge of the Hot Pepper. In 1989, Professor Ziment sent Dounne a personal letter for the British Medical profession and general public to understand the importance of integrating hot spices in our diet. His letter can be viewed on page 642 of Dounne's inspirational book 'A Mission of Love'.
RE-WRITING THE HISTORY BOOKS
For centuries the benefits of Hot Peppers as a nutritional power-house was tarnished by the misinterpretations of historical figures (including Christopher Columbus and many scientists) - whose lack of knowledge of its traditional benefits and usage, left a negative legacy. One of their biggest mistakes was marketing black & white peppercorns as a hot pepper, when in fact these do not belong to the 'capsicum family' and have been proven to be 'an indigestible, stomach irritant'. Yet the use of peppercorns as an everyday condiment continues to this day and is still found in the majority of households and eateries including the most expensive restaurants around the world. This is one of the many reasons why Dounne decided to set the record straight, so that people would really understand the healing properties of the 'true' Hot Pepper as an essential food for health and longevity... not to be abused, but used sparingly on a daily basis.
Hot Peppers equalises blood pressure & circulation; strengthens and tones the heart, stomach and the whole system; stimulates the brain & sex organs; purifies the blood; improves respiration; flushes out poisons and waste; builds up resistance against infections & disease and helps the body to re-establish balance. It is said to be one of the world's most wonderful healing foods... with the most powerful heat intensity, which is retained in the body for the longest period. Hot Peppers prevents hypothermia and blood-clots by thinning the blood (which provides protection against heart attacks, strokes, seizures, poor circulation & deep vein thrombosis); plus revives the taste-buds (*especially for the elderly and cancer sufferers on chemotherapy); and is a known cancer preventative. They are the best natural remedy for colds, flu, asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, cystic fibrosis, fever, sore throat, arthritis, rheumatism and constipation. Furthermore, Hot Peppers are antiseptic & anti-inflammatory; relieves pain; wakes up the entire system; heightens awareness; aids digestion when eaten with meals and is a natural aid for weight control (burning up to 15% calorie intake) and lots, lots more. In general, all Hot Peppers are good for you, however, the Scotch Bonnet (or Habanero) known in ancient times as The Fire Gods of the Herbal Kingdom, was recognised as the most healing. Hence, the reason it is used exclusively in GRAMMA'S Herbal Pepper Sauces.
Born in 1949, severely premature with a life expectancy of only one month (Dounne suffered from serious respiratory and digestive complications), however, it was thanks to her late grandmother's incredible knowledge of the health enhancing benefits of natural foods and traditional herbal remedies (including her Herbal Pepper Sauce), which enabled Dounne to survive against the odds. Unlike the United Kingdom who had the National Health Service and local doctors always at hand, back in those days Caribbean women (especially wives and mothers) had to learn the essential life skills that covered all aspects of natural healthcare. So sickness was rare and like her great-grandmother (a Spiritual Herbalist and mid-wife), who lived to 113 years; yet looked no more than 70; was physically strong, fit with an impeccable memory; excellent eye sight, all her teeth & hair and amazing skin quality... this was the norm for the majority of Caribbeans. Dounne was therefore fortunate to have spent most of her formative years under her grandmother's watchful eye, care and guidance; and learnt many valuable life lessons based on love, respect, selflessness, sharing and caring for oneself, family and community.
Today Dounne's life has now come full-circle
and whilst she watches our National Health Service crumble under the weight of the nation's deteriorating health (with no solutions in sight), she reminisces on her ancestors superior quality-of-life, and what they knew for sure about family values, natural foods, health and longevity - knowing that this nation's health could be restored, if they follow the same path.
WINTER WARMING INITIATIVE:
As both the National Health Service and Government are at a loss and desperate to find solutions to cure the nation's ills, they are now encouraging everyone to start taking personal responsibility for their 'own health' in their 'own homes'. Being a pensioner herself (67), and with over 20,000 pensioners dying each year, Dounne has been calling on the Government (for over 20 years) to provide 'a jar of GRAMMAS Herbal Pepper Sauce' to protect vulnerable pensioners during the winter months. This would not only improve their overall health and reduce the over-use of antibiotics, flu vaccinations, statins and other synthetic drug-medications (which are putting the nation's health at greater risk), but will also reduce the workload on the Health Service and save the NHS billions. She is therefore hopeful the latest research provides the Government with the necessary scientific back up to support the true merits and potential of GRAMMAS Herbal Pepper Sauces - which costs less than a prescription and is therefore more than affordable.
TO HER CREDIT:
Prior to Dounne's revelations, British doctors and scientists discouraged the use of 'Hot Peppers' in food because they believed it was harmful to health, until she produced the first ever detailed literature on its ancient folklore medicinal history and proper usage. Dounne remains the first Black British Businesswoman to have introduced the Caribbean - Scotch Bonnet Pepper to British households on a truly nationwide scale, which elevated this once little known ingredient into what is fast becoming an essential and popular part of the British diet. Today hot peppers are a true food fusion bridging the gap between British, Caribbean and Asian cultures, and so much of this success is a direct result of how significant a role Dounnes work has played in society and the natural health industry. Hence, why so many people still affectionately regard her as The Pepper Sauce Lady. 30 years on, GRAMMAS Herbal Pepper Sauces remains unique to the world and in a league of their own. With over 25 medicinal and culinary herbs & spices, plus a sacred ingredient, no other sauce can compare or compete for versatility, authenticity, exceptional quality, flavour and restorative healing properties. Therefore Grammas Herbal Pepper Sauces truly deserves to have pride of place on the nations dinner tables. In 2007, Dounne was finally honoured by the Queen with the MBE Medal for services to the British Food Industry : and also received the 2011 award for outstanding contribution to Natural & Complementary Medicine.