The Thrill of Extra Spice

Filed in Blog by on April 9, 2018

Have you ever wondered why some people love extra spicy stuff and some people don’t? It’s likely not just a case of having a different set of taste buds. It may be those with a high spicy food tolerance have less spice sensitivity. Others, though, think it’s all in your head. Certain spicy food experts say the burning sensation caused by spicy food is just your mind playing tricks on you. The spicy foods aren’t really causing you any physical harm, but rather it’s the effect of the capsaicin exciting your tongue’s pain receptors. This creates the sensation of heat but not physical heat. It’s the reverse sensation of spearmint creating the sensation of cold.

There are also some spicy food experts who maintain you’re not simply born with the desire or lack of desire for hot spicy food, but rather you acquire it over time. This makes sense when you look at certain populations around the world that commonly eat more spicy food and appear to have a higher tolerance. It’s not that they’re born that way, but rather they started eating those types of food earlier in life and are more desensitized to the taste. In other words, you may develop your spicy food habits over time, meal by meal.

It could also be a personality trait. There are some studies that equate the enjoyment of spice with the enjoyment of things like roller coasters and extreme sports. It’s essentially then the thrill seekers in life that may be attracted to spicy food and the rush they get from eating it. If you want to build up your tolerance and desire, it’s suggested you start small, and add from there. You may not be the first to indulgence in one of the hottest hot sauces around, but you also won’t be left out.

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