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By Paul Cook

Hot Chili Pepper Advice for Cinco de Mayo on Friday! More than likely you’ll be eating some sort of Mexican food. Just remember: Hot chili peppers — think: habanero or scorpion — are really hot. What to do about that flame in your mouth…

Habanero or scorpion peppers contain capsaicin,  a chemical compound that will basically set your mouth on fire. Eating capsaicin irritates our mouths, throats, and stomachs; makes us sweat, our eyes water, and our noses run; and, if we touch it to our bare skin, it can even cause rashes and burns. Potent stuff!

So if you eat hot chili peppers what should you do? First off, don’t drink water. That will just spread the heat around. Do drink beer (if you’re over 21). If your mouth is still burning after the beer, eat a dairy product and follow it with something sweet.

By the way, some people, called chili heads, enjoy the blazing experience because exposure to capsaicin also releases  feel-good endorphins. But that’s a lot to go through before feeling good if you ask me.



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