People who like eating spicy know that there’s something almost masochistic going on inside our heads while we eat those hot chilies, and spicy food lovers seem to be in the constant need for something even hotter.
American Chemical Society recently explained what really causes that fire in your mouth, and gave us some pretty reasons why we should never drink water after eating hot meals.
Apparently, the science behind all this blames a molecule called capsaicin, found in the majority of hot peppers.
This molecule is the one responsible for activating the pain receptors in our mouths every time you eat something spicy. Our brains then react and work to get the invading substance out of our bodies by any means necessary, and these means are usually tears, running nose, and sweating.
Yep, capsaicin just wants to see you cry…
Milk > Water
In situations like these, people often make a mistake and drink lots of water in order to speed up the recovering process. But, the reality is actually quite the opposite.
The trick is that our body needs a non-polar substance in order to dissolve the aforementioned molecule. According to IFL magazine, “Non-polar molecules are those which are not positively charged at one end and negatively charged at the other. Since capsaicin falls into this category, it can only be dissolved in other non-polar substances – of which water is not one.”
Milk, on the other hand, is packed with fat and protein molecules called casein, which is excellent at fighting and removing capsaicin from your mouth. So, there you have it, next time you eat spicy food, make sure you have some milk to put out that fire in your mouth.