back to article Fear the Reaper: Man hospitalised after eating red hot chilli pepper

A man had to be taken to hospital after eating one of the world's hottest peppers in an eating contest, it has emerged. The 34-year-old was rushed to an emergency room in New York after developing "excruciating" pain from eating the Carolina Reaper, according to a report in the British Medical Journal this week. The chilli …

  1. Oh Homer
    Pint

    Don't get it

    Love spicy food, in moderation, but really don't see the point in deliberately inducing pain, not even in competition. It's like a competition to see who has the most stupid.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Don't get it

      Speaking as both a runner and a chilli fiend: it's like a runner's high, without the hard slog. Addictive my precious addictive is.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Don't get it - It's like a competition to see who has the most stupid.

      But that's pretty much it. An awful lot of "sports" are basically just that, it's just that it gets called machismo rather than stupidity. I guess there was survival value back when losing a few males wasn't much of a problem, so whoever discovered that eating certain plants in quantity was fatal didn't do any real harm to reproductive rates.

      1. A Non e-mouse Silver badge

        Re: Don't get it - It's like a competition to see who has the most stupid.

        An awful lot of "sports" are basically just that..

        I've seen a couple of interviews with pro cyclists. They all say that professional cycling is all about pain endurance: Who can handle the pain the longest? I'd be surprised if many other endurance sports don't have similar characteristics.

        1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

          Re: Don't get it - It's like a competition to see who has the most stupid.

          Love is a burning thing

          And it makes a fiery ring.

          1. Scroticus Canis
            Holmes

            Re: "And it makes a fiery ring"

            Well it does come from the Puckerbutt Pepper Co. of South Carolina. No, honestly it does; and the guy who bred it is Ed Currie!

            (the icon is a reminder 'not to' without a bucket of ice cubes)

        2. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

          Re: Don't get it - It's like a competition to see who has the most stupid.

          @A non e-mouse

          " Who can handle the pain the longest?"

          Wouldn't it make more sense to see who can handle extreme pleasure the longest? I'm thinking possibly Tantric sex here...

    3. CommanderGalaxian
      Mushroom

      Re: Don't get it

      It's when you begin to detach from reality and start hallucinating - that's when you'll understand.

    4. d3vy Silver badge

      Re: Don't get it

      "Love spicy food, in moderation, but really don't see the point in deliberately inducing pain, not even in competition. It's like a competition to see who has the most stupid"

      This just about describes every visit I have ever made to an Indian restaurant with "the lads from sales" (in previous employment I was subjected to such horrors - now that I am a contractor I have a solid fool proof excuse *

      What is it in the human psyche that has some of us think that eating a hotter curry than someone else somehow makes you better? Especially when you are visibly NOT enjoying it.

      I like spicy food, but wouldn't partake on a night out... Its bad enough being hungover the next day without excreting molten lava too.

      * Participating in employee get togethers increases my exposure in the event of an IR35 investigation - This may or may not actually be true - but I'm not risking it!

    5. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Re: Don't get it

      "It's like a competition to see who has the most stupid."

      Yep, some of these things are so hot now, it's akin to seeing who can consume the most arsenic without dying.

      Others have compared this to sport. Well no, not really. There's no skill involved.

  2. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

    The Carolina reaper...

    I bought one last year at the annual Chilli festival at West Dean Gardens near Chichester. I can attest to it being the hottest thing I have ever had the misfortune of adding to a tomato sauce. Even a tiny bit made the whole meal inedible.

    1. macjules Silver badge

      Re: The Carolina reaper...

      Me too, at the same festival. It made a soup rather ... interesting. You can get this from the amazing Chilli Pepper Pete shop.

      1. Andy The Hat Silver badge

        Re: The Carolina reaper...

        I deseeded about 30 Bih Jolokias (~1million SU), made as little contact with the seeds or fruit as possible (the seeds were for planting) and washed the Marigolds I was wearing three times before the bursting bubbles of the soap lather stopped hurting my eyes ... I then made a small batch of Whammo Hot Sauce (lll) with the fruit - it was a bit fiery but really good!

        1. handleoclast

          Re: The Carolina reaper...

          and washed the Marigolds I was wearing three times before the bursting bubbles of the soap lather stopped hurting my eyes

          I always remember my mother's advice: never masturbate after chopping chillies.

          Oh, and you're a wimp for removing the seeds.

        2. Mongrel
          Boffin

          Re: The Carolina reaper...

          "and washed the Marigolds I was wearing three times before the bursting bubbles of the soap lather stopped hurting my eyes"

          Rinse your hands\utensils with dilute bleach solution first as it breaks down the capsaicin to make it more water soluble and much easier to clean up.

          1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

            Re: The Carolina reaper...

            Rinse your hands\utensils with dilute bleach solution

            Or in full-fat milk. Capsacin is fat-soluble (which is why drinking lager to take away the burn is pointless - better to drink milk or lassi..)

    2. LeahroyNake Silver badge

      Re: The Carolina reaper...

      I have a rather small jar of hot sauce with the main ingredient Carolina Reaper. I use it to spice up bolognaise, chilli and currys. If I'm feeling especially brave I have some on chips.

      My late brother gave it to me years ago, I have no idea where it came from but the memory always gives me a smile before I down a few pints of milk;)

    3. handleoclast

      Re: The Carolina reaper...

      Tesco were selling them last year (and I hope will sell them again this year when they come into season).

      Even a tiny bit made the whole meal inedible.

      I found that half of a large one, all of a medium-sized one, or two small ones added just the right amount of bang to a meal.

      That was just the right amount that, 30 minutes later, there was a very warm (but not quite fiery) sensation when I had a piss. More than that and it becomes painful to piss. Less than that and it's not hot enough in the mouth.

      YMMV.

      1. DrBobK

        Re: The Carolina reaper...

        I got some Carolina Reapers from Tesco's as well. Not nearly as evil as I'd imagined. I ate half of one raw (sliced into little bits, not eaten in one go) to see what it was like and it wasn't painful, just very, very hot. Nice fruity taste when chopped and cooked in homemade refried black beans. I may have developed a tolerance to chillis - been eating them very regularly for decades.

    4. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: The Carolina reaper...

      I saw what it did to Sergei and Yulia Skripal so I'm steering well clear of it!

      I do enjoy a very hot chilli or curry but it's always a fine line between hitting perfection or brewing up what can be best described as battery acid.

      Having ridden the wave, soaked T-shirts in sweat, even done the 'should have washed my hands' thing, I have no inclination to enter any hottest chilli contest. At my age I have no desire to re-enact the 'Alien' or 'Scanners' scenes.

      1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Re: The Carolina reaper...

        At my age I have no desire to re-enact the 'Alien' or 'Scanners' scenes

        But the chilli might have a role in migraine treatment.. (one of the 'features' of migraines is that the pain is often caused by heavily-dilated blood vessels in and around the brain. My current migraine medication is a vasoconstrictor[1] so maybe chilli could be used instead and won't make me nauseous like the sumatriptan..)

        Actually, on second thoughts, I'll stick with the sumatriptan. I enjoy mild-to-warm curries but can't see the point of really hot ones. If you are not used to them, you won't taste anything because your taste buds get nuked by the capsacin and, if you are used to that level of heat, you won't really notice how hot it is.

        [1] Which also turns out to be useful in delaying and prolonging the effects of alcohol on the brain. Who knew?

    5. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Re: The Carolina reaper...

      Along the A27 from Chichester in Portsmouth are "Thousand Hills"...

      They have a set of 4 Carolina Reaper products made from their own grown chilies.

      I've not sampled those, but slowly going through a jar of "On Respirators", so it will be a while before I try the Carolina Reapers

    6. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: The Carolina reaper...

      I can recomend that festival too, and the 1000 island guys

      Whatever happens, dont try the stand that sells satan's s**t

      you will regret it.

      I did

  3. Zog_but_not_the_first Silver badge
    Mushroom

    Not the worst of it

    Hellish symptoms from the chilli going in, but...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Not the worst of it

      .... and remember if you need to use the toilet while preparing a meal with chillis then the "now wash your hands" instruction needs to be acted on first (as I once discovered the painful way!)

      1. Arthur the cat Silver badge

        Re: Not the worst of it

        ... and remember if you need to use the toilet while preparing a meal with chillis then the "now wash your hands" instruction needs to be acted on first

        Ditto if you need to clean a contact lens (also discovered the hard way).

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Not the worst of it

        the "now wash your hands" instruction needs to be acted on first

        I've never found soap and water are terribly effective in properly removing residual capsaicin, and the hottest things I handle are supermarket sourced scotch bonnets, probably around a mere 200,000 Scoville.

        1. Rugster

          Re: Not the worst of it

          Wash your hands with cooking oil first. binds to the capsaicin and then washes off. I made the mistake of rubbing my eyes and shortly after making a bathroom visit some years ago whilst learning what not to do. Not a mistake to make more than once.

          And to all the people slating the heat, it's not like that once you are used to it, tolerance increases with exposure and the nice heat you get from ever increasing strength is glorious.

          1. Terry 6 Silver badge
            Mushroom

            Re: Not the worst of it

            Oh dear. yes. a few years back having pizza at one of those places that has a pot of dried chillies on the table. And at some point I needed a wee. And made the awful error of not remembering to wash hands first. Ouch.

            As an undergrad at Bradford Uni a good curry meant "burnt at both ends". But as noted with the YMMV, when, in my second year I had a curry with some Birmingham students on a visit I made there they kept boasting/warning me how hot their curries were. I found mine surprisingly mild so I spooned some chilli powder on. Then I noticed that the table had gone silent. They were all staring at me, blowing through their mouths and making panting noises, while turning red.

            In Bradford we often got these "macho" types of visitor who announced they could eat the hottest curry there was. We always tried to discourage them, genuinely. Telling them to go for something mild. But usually we failed. (Though sometimes, if the were really obnoxiously boastful about what they thought they could take, we'd deliberately start to make it sound like a challenge.) And enjoyed the fun. To put that in context; in my first term I did the inevitable visit to the campus GP, who had a stack of prescriptions ready written, followed by a visit to the chemist shop, who had a large box of brown bottles (Kaolin I think) ready....

            Icon appropriated for this topic....

            1. ZippedyDooDah

              Re: Not the worst of it

              You remind me of my student days in Manchester 1979/1982.

              In Rusholme in Manchester, there was a very cheap curry house called "The Palace" . It served a curry called "The Killer". It tasted delicious and lived up to it's name as half way through it became very unpleasant.

              AFIK, in later years came the "Suicide". I can't find any evidence that it still exists. Must be burnt out.

            2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

              Re: Not the worst of it

              "macho" types of visitor who announced they could eat the hottest curry there was

              When that happens I'm always reminding of the Goodness Gracious Me sketch where they go out for "An English" and daringly ask for "the blandest thing on the menu"..

              Kaolin I think

              Probably Kaolin and morphine. The kaolin (being basically calcium carbonate) helps neutralise excess acid (and helps err.. solidify the gut contents) and the morphine smooths out spasmodic gut reactions. Sadly, not a lot of chemists carry it these days because it's got that eeevvviiillll morphine in it.

      3. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Not the worst of it

      Actually, fresh superhot chillis don't hurt on their way out - chilli powder is much worse for that because it contains far less pure capsaicin (which metabolises quickly).

      1. Korev Silver badge
        Mushroom

        Re: Not the worst of it

        I find it's the other way round. If the heat is from sauces or powder then it's no problem on the way out; anything with chunks of real chilli can get a bit "Chuck Berry"

        1. Andy The Hat Silver badge

          Re: Not the worst of it

          I would agree with that - day after the fresh chilli massala night before :-)

          1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

            Re: Not the worst of it

            day after the fresh chilli massala night before

            And freezing leftover curry just makes it get hotter.. in my experience anyway.

            Hungry now. And some of the developers near me tend to bring in their own lunch and it's usually something curried. Most unfair.

        2. Zog_but_not_the_first Silver badge
          Joke

          Re: Not the worst of it

          " anything with chunks of real chilli can get a bit "Chuck Berry""

          Johnny Cash Shirley?

          1. Korev Silver badge
            Pint

            Re: Not the worst of it

            " anything with chunks of real chilli can get a bit "Chuck Berry""

            Johnny Cash Shirley?

            Yes, you're correct

            A virtual pint for you -->

        3. Steve K Silver badge

          Re: Not the worst of it

          Yes, beware the Marmite laser!!

  4. lglethal Silver badge
    Trollface

    Like Moths to a flame...

    "Dragon's Breath was created by a farmer for the Chelsea Flower show and is so potent that it had to be kept in a sealed container when it went on display."

    It had to be kept in a sealed container primarily because otherwise some Chav would try to prove their manliness by eating the darn thing and the farmer doesnt want to be sued for the damage it does to them...

    1. Grikath

      Re: Like Moths to a flame...

      How can the farmer get sued, if someone *stole* it, and ate the evidence?

      Darwin Award material? Possibly. Something that would stand up in court (outside, of course, the US....) ? Not a chance in hell.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Like Moths to a flame...

        Darwin Award material? Possibly. Something that would stand up in court (outside, of course, the US....) ? Not a chance in hell.

        I dont know.... These days unless you make things difficult to steal then you have not been diligent enough in protecting people from their own stupidity....

        Not forgetting that a 70 something year old pensioner ended up arrested for murder and bailed pending further enquiries after he stabbed a bugler with his own screwdriver when attacked by said thieving cu*t who then died in the street where his accomplices dumped him while they made their own get away.

        fortunately they seen sense and was advised later that he would face no charges.... they should pin a meddle on him...

        but its not quite as bad as in America, where a man in new york was walking around pointing what looked like a gun at people. it was reported by several people that a man was walking around pointing a gun... when the police arrived on scene and the man took up a pose like someone taking aim to shoot, he was shot and killed. It turned out he was pointing a metal welding gun.....

        it all kicked off with the locals calling it a racist and unlawful killing, and one report I read said the police involved in the shooting had to be seen to in hospital for minor injuries...

        its a crazy world we live in where we have to protect the stupid from themselves, or its our fault when they hurt themselves or others....

        1. Prst. V.Jeltz Silver badge

          Re: Like Moths to a flame...

          "How can the farmer get sued, if someone *stole* it,"

          Arnt there tales of burglars suing the homeowners for unsafe windows and rooftops ... hazards in the garden etc? or are they urban myths?

        2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

          Re: Like Moths to a flame...

          you have not been diligent enough in protecting people from their own stupidity

          My dad was an industrial pharmacist and worked on trying to make a temazipam preparation that couldn't be abused by addicts (who were in the habit of injecting the capsules liquid contents).

          They tried formulating it as a high molecular-weight gel that couldn't be sucked up through a needle. Initially, it was a success until the addicts realised that. if they heated the gel, it became liquid.

          Queue a series of addicts with potential gangrene in their arms because, as soon as the gel cooled in their veins, it would solidify again, blocking the blood vessel. Seems the team underestimated that cleverness and lack of common sense of people wanting their fix.

          The product was withdrawn ASAP.

  5. ARGO

    Missing an important fact...

    ...did he win the competition?

    1. d3vy Silver badge

      Re: Missing an important fact...

      Given the symptoms described I wouldnt call it a win...

  6. chivo243 Silver badge
    Windows

    In my youth

    I loved everything spicy. I couldn't get enough. Now in my mid to sunset years, I've come to appreciate aromatic hot flavors, not just HEAT, getting older is hell...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: In my youth

      Evaporated milk mate, about half a can will neutralise it in the stomach and dissolve the capsaicin oil in the mouth. Quickest fix there is, apart from rinsing your mouth with not-scalding-temperature hot water, which displaces the capsaicin "oil". Kidneys stopped coping with Ghost Nagas in my 50's - like peeing lava.

      1. kain preacher Silver badge

        Re: In my youth

        Actaully ice cream is the best as it has sugar and milk.

        1. Charles 9 Silver badge

          Re: In my youth

          To deal with capsaicin, you need either fats or alcohol. It's not water-solubule. Ice cream's a good idea not really for the sugar but for the fat content. The cheese is a good move, too. Cream cheese should hit the spot because it's only semi-solid. A good creamy dip or dressing (like Ranch) should be fatty enough to take the edge off. And using mouthwash is handy for a quick fix in the mouth (because of its alcohol content).

      2. CommanderGalaxian
        Boffin

        Re: In my youth

        Cheddar cheese works too.

        1. Christoph Silver badge

          Re: In my youth

          Wash your mouth out with a Tide Pod?

      3. wolfetone Silver badge

        Re: In my youth

        "Evaporated milk mate, about half a can will neutralise it in the stomach and dissolve the capsaicin oil in the mouth. Quickest fix there is, apart from rinsing your mouth with not-scalding-temperature hot water, which displaces the capsaicin "oil". Kidneys stopped coping with Ghost Nagas in my 50's - like peeing lava."

        I was making some sort of snack involving fried kidney beans and chopped up bacon, and I used the Blair's Mega Death sauce (The hottest one they do). Anyway, instead of a few drops about a teaspoon left the bottle. No matter, I carried on. Ate it, and I have never experienced pain like it. I was crying, my mouth felt like it was being stabbed multiple times.

        Unfortunately for me the wife was on a "lactose free" diet, so there was no milk of any sort in the house. All I had was a four pack of Red Bull which I brought with me to the toilet. Swilled it round my mouth, gargled it, spat it out. Rinse and repeat, however after 4 cans it was still hellish. Ran down to the Tesco 3 floors below the flat, bought 2 lots of double cream and a 4pt of whole milk, downed the cream on the way back up to the flat.

        Unfortunately for me a few hours later, no amount of cream or milk could heal my poor arse from the hellish abolutions I deposited in the toilet.

      4. Prst. V.Jeltz Silver badge
        Joke

        Re: In my youth

        "Evaporated milk mate, about half a can "

        oh right , I'll just pop round to 1978 and borrow some off my Gran....

        1. jake Silver badge

          Re: In my youth

          1978? Still in use, dude. Can't make proper mashed potatoes without it.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ghost Peppers

    I grow them on my kitchen windowsill all year round under LED lights. Anytime I need a chilli fix, I just reach out and grab one, eat it raw... and after a few years of doing thus... I can report that my eyesight has suffered - CSR they thought, but the big b*stard spots in front of my eyes could well be from bleeding on the brain around the visual cortex leading to pressure on the optic nerves. Lovely flavour though, I don't feel the heat anymore. It's an addiction, what can I say? I've got the Dragon's Breath Chilli Seeds bookmarked on ebay, for when these eventually die, if I don't die first.

    1. Andy The Hat Silver badge

      Re: Ghost Peppers

      Trouble with the Schoville tests now is that they are based on a single highest result from one seed or even a few placental scrapes from one heavily dehydrated fruit. It used to be an average of the entire fruit pulp so "1.5 million" or "2 million" in modern terms does not really mean a lot.

      1. LucreLout Silver badge

        Re: Ghost Peppers

        so "1.5 million" or "2 million" in modern terms does not really mean a lot.

        ... it means I'll be needing an extra soft toilet roll, preferably chilled.

        I love hot food, but some of the later generations of sauces and chillis seem to be more about pain than flavour.

  8. x 7

    does it keep rabbits and deer at bay?

    Time to plant some in the garden maybe.

    1. kain preacher Silver badge

      I found out the hard way that rabbits love hot peppers.

      1. BebopWeBop Silver badge

        Tortoises like them as well (my cats keep rabbits at bay)

        1. chivo243 Silver badge

          Tropical birds love them too... A friend once had an African Parrot, and he fed it dried hot peppers as a treat quite regularly.

          1. jake Silver badge

            My chickens love peppers in general, including the extremely hot ones. Birds don't have capsaicin receptors, and so don't feel the heat. The original wild hot chili (probably a variation of the tepin) was a tiny little thing, swallowed whole by birds (thus "bird chili"). Birds, being birds, later poop wherever they want, distributing the seeds. Every spring, I have volunteer chili plants growing wherever I allow the chooks to graze ... The volunteers that come up in the south-facing brush lines (or hedgerows) are the most likely to survive the winter, and are our first harvest in the spring. No, the birds don't lay spicy eggs (although I've been known to joke that they do!).

            One wonders about the current avocado fad in Europe ...

            1. Charles 9 Silver badge

              Capsaicin is engineered to be able to be eaten by birds. They don't trigger avian pain receptors. That's so the birds fly away and crap the seeds to spread them (because birds tend to eat the seeds whole). Surprised about the rabbit bit, as they're mammals and should respond to the stuff.

        2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

          my cats keep rabbits at bay

          Our former ones brought them into the garden. Bits of them anyway..

          (For some reason, the male cat never ate the heads. And tended to leave the guts in a little pile under the kitchen table. Ditto with squirrels and mice.)

      2. hplasm Silver badge
        Happy

        How?

        "I found out the hard way that rabbits love hot peppers."

        After they machine-gunned the greenhouse...

        1. kain preacher Silver badge

          Re: How?

          I saw them mowed down A thai dragon pepper plant. I thought hell they cant be that hot and ate 4 at once.

          1. detritus

            Re: How?

            > I saw them mowed down A thai dragon pepper plant. I thought hell they cant be that hot and ate 4 at once.

            It's not often I actually LOLALOUD on the Reg forums, but you created the perfect picture in my mind :)

          2. wolfetone Silver badge
            Pint

            Re: How?

            "I saw them mowed down A thai dragon pepper plant. I thought hell they cant be that hot and ate 4 at once."

            You poor bastard, have a pint for your trouble.

    2. Robert Helpmann?? Silver badge
      Childcatcher

      does it keep rabbits and deer at bay?

      Rue and cat piss keeps them away. If you don't have a cat of your own, see about getting the remains of a neighbor's litter box and spreading it in a circle around the perimeter of your garden. If you add a double fence, you will have a very effective deterrent.

      1. kain preacher Silver badge

        Depends on the rabbits. I raised a few rabbits that attacked cats.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        '..If you don't have a cat of your own, see about getting the remains of a neighbor's litter box and spreading it in a circle around the perimeter of your garden.'

        Fsck me, I've been binning the stuff out for years and now you tell me there's a potential market out there for used cat litter?, that I could have been raking in that sweet sweet katzenscheißgeld for decades?

        Me: I want a loan to start a new 'Green' business

        Bank Manager: No worries, what exactly would this business involve then?, got a business plan?

        Me: Get a truck, go round collecting used cat litter, bag it, market it to garden centres as deer and rabbit repellent...

        Bank Manager: Errrrrrr.....what's the 'Green' aspect?

        Me: Ever smelled 100 tons of 'fresh' kitty litter?

        On topic, I've not had the pleasure of meeting a Carolina Reaper yet (seeds are on the to-do list), I quite like the taste of the Bhut jolokias, but have had to be a bit more circumspect about using them thanks to kiddies, dog(s) and cats, though I do have to say that one of the cats we had back in the 80s did quite like his spicy food, he'd happily munch on unattended curries etc. containing Scotch Bonnets, though his favourite unattended dish was definately buttery mashed potatoes loaded with Cayenne and Dill.

        My current lot are a bunch of wussey cats..black pepper (and to a lesser extent, white pepper) are their limits when it comes to raiding unattended spicy food..though a couple of them do seem to really like the taste of black pepper..so there's hope for them yet (the dog's a lost cause, opening a pack of Chili Heatwave(hah!) Doritos near her makes her sneeze and run away..)

        Big question is, apropos its repellent properties, would the resulting used litter from chilli eating cats be Super Effective?

        1. Chris G Silver badge

          "Me: Ever smelled 100 tons of 'fresh' kitty litter?"

          Made me laugh tea down my nostrils, missed the keyboard but my white cat is no longer sleeping next to me.

          The weirdest 'pet' eating chilli was in my horse keeping days, we often use to trailer up and take the horses down to Camber Sands for weekends in the winter. In the evenings we would cook up pre prepared food on a driftwood fire, my mate John had brought some chilli con carne made with habanero/scotch bonnet peppers, when he put his plate down his mare finished off what was on the plate, chilli and rice.

          The following day we clocked her at 43MPH running alongside the pickup truck.

        2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

          I've been binning the stuff out for years

          We use the compressed wood cat-litter pellets. Once the... solids are removed (if the dog doesn't get them first[1]) the remaining sawdust can go into the compost heap. The urine acts as an accellerant and, as long as you also have enough green matter[2] going in as well, produce really good compost.

          [1] Cats, being primary carnivores, don't have a terribly efficient digestion system. So quite a bit of the output is still good, meaty protein. If you are a dog anyway - one of our previous dogs used to follow the cats round the garden and consume the treats straight from the source, still nice and warm.. And people wonder why I prefer cats? And why I don't like dogs licking me..

          [2] As my wife informs me, compost is a mix of brown matter and green matter. Get the mix wrong and you'll either get silage or unusable stuff that hasn't rotted down.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Hot naga ghost chillies are used as chemical weapons in Bengal/Bangladesh. That is to say, rubbed in to structures that people want to protect from elephants that might otherwise knock them down.

      AIUI, those are the world's hottest natural chillies. Everything hotter is willy-waving.

      1. AceRimmer1980
        IT Angle

        *Real* willy-waving also includes not washing your hands first..

  9. ForthIsNotDead

    Not clever...

    I know it's seen as a bit of fun, but I was talking to my son who is a paramedic about this subject over the Christmas holidays. It's really not a clever thing to do. The body goes into a form of shock similar to anaphylactic shock - it thinks it's been poisoned - which is exactly what has in fact happened - the body has just ingested a potent toxin. If you're a middle-aged out-of-shape type it can easily induce a heart attack. And guess what, if you've just scoffed one of those chilli's down, aint no one gonna resuscitate you!

    Seriously, don't do it!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Not clever...

      Chilli plants are not out to kill you by the way, the illusion of extreme heat is nature's disincentive - chilli seeds are most optimally dispersed by birds, who lack capsaicin receptors. It takes humans to do something bird brained when it comes to truly hot chillies.

      Like most poisons, you can build up a resistance. If you've never consumed extremely hot chillies before, starting off with a Reaper is going to lead you to the emergency room and even for people used to "Restaurant-hot" are not in the remotest sense prepared for the agony and ecstasy of one of the Apex Chillies: Reaper, Ghost< Naga, Dragon's Breath etc.

    2. Grant Fromage

      Re: Not clever...

      Capsiascin is not toxic in any dose you can get from eating chillies known, The effects on the tissues with receptors it matches can put someone into shock, with that comes all the possibilities including death. otherwise this all looks a bit sniffy.

      Capsaiscin is neutral and / or benefiical to the gut, but not to your chocolate starfish when it leaves the system.

      Hot chillies are stomach benign and full of vit C and a shedload of other nice things.

      Lips mouth eyes bum and even ears have plug ins for warning proteins and enzymes that were evolved for anti-bacteria immune wake up and the body functions which get triggered are known to get it from capsaicin too.

      I have on a dare done stupid chillies, won a bet and had a day later only a ring stinger on afterburner.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Pepper X created by the PuckerButt Pepper Co is now the hottest pepper. It's twice as hot as the reaper. I've been told the first time you go poo it's a religious experience. Atheist see god. or some thing.

    pepper X is 3,180,000

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

      1. kain preacher Silver badge

        Re: Hey thanks for the head's up!

        Um watch on you tube first we feast. See peoples reaction to that pepper.

        1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

          Re: Hey thanks for the head's up!

          I.. don't get it. Found a YT vid of someone eating 15 chicken wings dosed in a Pepper X sauce. He didn't appear to be enjoying the experience. Also curious how this stuff works, ie he had a bunch of sauce around his mouth, but didn't seem to produce inflammation. Also only 58k views, so monetising the experience probably didn't earn much.

          Personally I think I'll stick to mild chillis like scotch bonnet, where at least I can appreciate the flavor. If I want pain, I'll work in sales again.

  11. Simon Harris Silver badge

    Nominative Determinism?

    These chillies were created by Ed Currie, according to the BBC report.

    Capsaicin may have anti-cancer properties, and half the crop is donated for cancer research.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Nominative Determinism?

      Capcaisin kills prostate cancer cells:

      https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4811481/

      1. lglethal Silver badge
        Joke

        Re: Nominative Determinism?

        "Capcaisin kills prostate cancer cells"

        Maybe so, but the first doctor to try and rub my wedding tackle with a Naga chilli will quickly be sporting a black eye!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Nominative Determinism?

          Naga suppositories will be a legal requirement for the over 50s.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Nominative Determinism?

            Naga suppositories will be a legal requirement for the over 50s.

            Blessed be the Internet; there must be someone, somewhere who did this already so I don't have to!

            1. tiggity Silver badge

              Re: Nominative Determinism?

              Not sure about that, but back in my student days, for a bet a male (obv) student rubbed chili powder over his helmet (not the headgear type) (and this was done properly not a light dusting, heavily covered). He won his bet, but suffered plenty of discomfort.

              1. Tom 38 Silver badge
                Mushroom

                Re: Nominative Determinism?

                When I was about 13, the gag in our rugby team was persuading someone that deep heat on your knob was a ticket to happyhappyfunland.

                It is not.

          2. Korev Silver badge
            Coat

            Re: Nominative Determinism?

            Naga suppositories will be a legal requirement for the over 50s.

            Well, old people do like to overheat their homes; I guess this will stop them getting chilli

        2. DontFeedTheTrolls Silver badge
          Headmaster

          Re: Nominative Determinism?

          "Capcaisin kills prostate cancer cells"

          Maybe so, but the first doctor to try and rub my wedding tackle with a Naga chilli will quickly be sporting a black eye!

          I don't think its your wedding tackle they'll be rubbing. More inserting a little further back

          1. kain preacher Silver badge

            Re: Nominative Determinism?

            More like blow it out your ass. Cure colon cancer by cauterizing .

        3. ZippedyDooDah

          Re: Nominative Determinism?

          That makes me think. Has toothpaste got chilli in it? It certainly gave me a Clarkson experience.

          1. Charles 9 Silver badge

            Re: Nominative Determinism?

            "That makes me think. Has toothpaste got chilli in it? It certainly gave me a Clarkson experience."

            You're probably thinking like arthritis creams that use capsaicin as an analgesic. That's why the Dragon's Breath has half its crop earmarked for medical research.

      2. hplasm Silver badge
        Mushroom

        Re: Nominative Determinism?

        "Capcaisin kills prostate cancer cells:"

        Blows the whole thing out of the airlock!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Nominative Determinism? - Capsaicin may have anti-cancer properties

      Chemotherapy more like. The idea of chemotherapy agents is to kill the cancer cells, which are weaker than normal cells, without quite killing you. In the early days it didn't always work out too well, now oncologists usually know when to stop.

      Several naturally occurring substances have been investigated for potential chemotherapy use, and proven far too toxic.

  12. Richard Gray 1
    Mushroom

    Obviously not Thai...

    I am fortunate enough to be married to a wonderful Thai lady (met in an Irish pub in Norway.. go figure)

    As a Thai, she loves her papaya salad "poc poc" (the name comes from the sound in the pestle and mortar). Her freinds love her salad when she puts in about 5-6 birds eye chilies. I can stomach about 1/2 a birds eye chili ) my wonderful other half likes about 20 of the damn things in..

    And don't get me started on her drying and grinding chilies or the dried squid that she warms up as a snack in the oven...

    Still both are better than the result of her eating "falang" (western) food specifically baked beans in the great British fry up...

    1. detritus

      Re: Obviously not Thai...

      A friend who has spent many months in Thailand kickboxing training used to eat that stuff for breakfast every morning, whilst training and keeping trim.

      I had a taste once.

      Once.

      I love chillies, but not like that, or then. Never like that. Never then.

    2. Chris G Silver badge

      Re: Obviously not Thai...

      Some years ago I used to knock around with a Ghanaian mate who was a chef, when he first learned that I like a good curry he invited me and my girlfriend round for dinner one evening. His girlfiend warned me that his curries tended to be quite hot, so I told her I like a good hot curry.

      What she didn't tell me was about the African salad on the side, it had tiny green chillies in it that Fred ate like sweets, when I ate one it was not only bloody hot but on the side I chewed it felt as though I had just been punched by Muhammad Ali.

      It also taught me the true meaning of the word afterburner.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It's not only the going in you have to worry about!

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Aren't you supposed to coat your mouth with wax before eating the insanity peppers?

  15. Joe Harrison

    Simpsons

    After eating Chief Wiggum's Guatemalan insanity peppers at a chili cook-off, Homer wakes up in a strange, New Mexico-esque dream world where he meets his spirit guide (Johnny Cash), whom Homer dubs "Space Coyote."

    https://youtu.be/H3CyMWS7YXA

  16. ashton

    Chile Pepper Institute....

  17. BebopWeBop Silver badge
    Devil

    Amateur

  18. jchevali

    What magazines print when they run out of things to print.

    1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

      What idiots post when they have run out of people who'll listen to them.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    To be honest

    Anything above 100,000 Scoville units, which is already pretty hot, is not tasty any more, its just a macho show of stupidity.

    That is all...

    1. Andy The Hat Silver badge

      Re: To be honest

      I disagree with that - up to about 400,000 on the habanero side of the group is still tasty.

      1. Killing Time

        Re: To be honest

        For me, Chocolate Habaneros have the right balance of fierce heat plus flavour. Well recommended if you can get them.

        P.S. they are brown, hence the chocolate descriptor, its not relating to the taste.

        1. Colabroad

          Re: To be honest

          I've come to appreciate the scotch bonnet, (a sweeter cousin of the habernero if my wife is to be believed).

          Especially when it's used in jerk chicken cooked/smoked in a grill made of an old metal barrel. I wind down the windows driving past these places just for the smell!

    2. GruntyMcPugh Silver badge

      Re: To be honest

      I disagree also, I'm quite partial to a Naga, and they weigh in close to a million. I grew some from the seeds of a pepper a Bangladeshi colleague gave me. Grew into nice tall plants, got quite a few chillis off each, and one was enough to curry a whole chicken, and make it quite rewarding. Some of these hotter chillies actually taste nice, the Naga has a quite complex fug going on (think guava), it's not just one dimensional heat, and it's a hell of a lot nicer than the far less hot bird's eye chilli, which I find quite bitter.

      1. DrBobK

        Re: To be honest

        The comment about bird's eye vs naga is spot on. Bird's eye are bitter and nothing much else apart from hot. Naga, ghost, habanero, and reaper all have lovely fruity flavours provided you have some tolerance to the heat.

      2. Nick Kew Silver badge
        Mushroom

        Re: To be honest

        @Grunty - Agree, birdseyes are a bit bitter. A decade or so ago they were the only generally-available hot chillies, and I used them a lot. Then came the bonnets and habaneros to a shop near me, and the sweeter flavour of my curries, soups and stirfries was a revelation - though a half a bonnet could substitute for half a dozen birdseyes in terms of heat (sadly not true of the much more bland scotch bonnets which are all I can get now).

        You do get desensitised. So an upper limit beyond which things become pure machismo is entirely subjective.

        Icon for dragonsbreath. Chewing a habanero raw would be pure machismo for me, though I've chewed birdseyes for medicinal purposes (when I had a concert to sing and a nasty cold).

  20. aenikata

    It's not masochism

    The endorphin rush of eating hot food is well established - chilli eaters get a high of sorts from it.

    People have all different levels of tolerances. Not many dare try the 9 Million Scoville 'Psycho Slayer' chilli extract, even in microscopic portions. For most Instant Regret chocolate is well named (and truly fierce). But there are those of us who find most Habanero sauces 'fairly mild' and treat a 200,000 Scoville BBQ sauce as a regular condiment. Having reached those levels eating a few Carolina Reapers isn't that silly a feat. Assuming you're hard enough to take something way hotter than you've ever had before while also trying to out-eat a bunch who may be better prepared i. But competition is about pushing yourself out of your comfort zone, pushing your limits, in chilli eating as well as sports. There's much more stupid things around (like the tide pod challenge).

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: It's not masochism

      "But competition is about pushing yourself out of your comfort zone, pushing your limits, in chilli eating as well as sports. There's much more stupid things around (like the tide pod challenge golf)."

      FTFY.

  21. 0laf Silver badge
    Mushroom

    I like things hotter than most people but that doesn't mean I'm remotely interested in eating any of these weaponised fruit. Chili heat for some reasons hits the Chinese Food gland. You eat one, suffer a bit, recover and 10min later your brain is telling you to eat some more.

    However I find the videos of idiots eating them on you tube absolutely hilarious so please keep up the good work.

    1. Paul Crawford Silver badge
      Gimp

      "You eat one, suffer a bit, recover and 10min later your brain is telling you to eat some more."

      Sounds a bit like visiting a dominatrix =>

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I hear eating hot peppers cures hemorrhoids.

    1. handleoclast

      I hear eating hot peppers cures hemorrhoids.

      Doesn't cure, but makes them a lot easier to live with.

      Your intestines release mucous because of the irritation from capsaicin. That softens up the stool. It comes out a lot easier. I eat enough chillies to soften a park bench, let alone a stool.

      Warning: if you overdo the chillies and something causes you to cough hard that can result in a penguin walk home for clean underwear.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Gosh - Not a single mention of Darwin Awards

    I'm surprised nobody has asked if anybody has ever died from eating a chilli, indeed the name Reaper does indicate a certain morbidness.

    I have to confess that as I've got older, my ability to handle a strong chilli has got worse and worse. I was never very good to start off with, but now even a mild high st curry is far too strong for me. I have no idea how I'd ever be able to handle anything on the scale in five digits, never mind 6 and 7!

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Re: Gosh - Not a single mention of Darwin Awards

      "I'm surprised nobody has asked if anybody has ever died from eating a chilli, indeed the name Reaper does indicate a certain morbidness."

      Because it's exceedingly rare for it to happen and IINM entails some pre-existing condition. Otherwise, it may feel like you want to die, but you'll nearly always survive the ordeal.

  24. JulieM Silver badge

    Flatmate's Marigolds

    I once had to cut up some very powerful Costa Rican green chilli peppers. For this task, I borrowed my flatmate's Marigold gloves.

    When I had finished, I very carefully turned the gloves right-side-out again .....

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Flatmate's Marigolds

      I take it you didn't get on very well then. Before or after.

  25. Bandikoto
    Trollface

    Shades of seventies/eighties tales about that suspect rock and roll guy

    Leave it to a British publication to make such a serious error about American Rock and Roll. "Don't Fear the Reaper" is by Blue Öyster Cult, not the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

    Also, semen, even in massive amounts, doesn't cause stomach upset.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Shades of seventies/eighties tales about that suspect rock and roll guy

      I don't want to know how you are so sure of this, Please don't elaborate!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Shades of seventies/eighties tales about that suspect rock and roll guy

      Not really seeing what the contribution is here? Not seeing the music reference in the article and as for the additional observation, well.... just not interested.....

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    1,569,300 Scoville Heat Units

    "Mister Simpson, if you're trying to kill yourself we also have some handguns" -- Apu Nahasapeemapetilon

  27. Stevie Silver badge

    Bah!

    I have never understood the attraction of food so heavily spiced that all one can taste is the spice. As for the utility of these super-hot peppers, well, most of their uses would seem to contravene either local laws or in extreme cases the Geneva accords on chemical weapon use.

    Idiotic.

    1. kain preacher Silver badge

      Re: Bah!

      Actually all chemical weapons including pepper spray is banned in the Geneva accords

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Wuss.

    I love the flavour / taste of ghost peppers - it's like a spicy mango / buffalo (can't really describe it)

    Though yeah, peeing hurts afterwards - it burns us, it does

  29. Chris G Silver badge

    For the brave/mildly insane, here: https://www.southdevonchillifarm.co.uk/online-shop/extreme-heat-products/page-2/ is a good place to go. I have tried some of their products and stick to the wuss level but I have friends who highly recommend the more rarefied items.

  30. Luiz Abdala
    Joke

    Special Jalapeños...

    We had a very special jar of jalapeños... that sat on the mess hall, behind a Nuclear Power Plant Control Room.

    The few employees that had the privilege -or orders - to eat there were aware of that special jar, regularly topped up with the purest olive oil. Never a single piece of those peppers was removed from the jar - except one - since the power plant was commissioned in the year 2.000. It was 2003 and it was still there, looking exactly like a fresh bottle, bought in any store. The bravest ones would serve a few drops of that liquid in their meals, with no ill-effects in the short term. Even the most insipid grub would spring to life with a single oily drop of that vial. I have tasted it myself, and survived to tell the tale.

    It was said that the Power Plant was jump-started with a single piece of jalapeño, from that flask, neutron emitters be damned. Since the lights on that mess hall were never actually turned off, fed from the same circuit of the control room, in a constantly inhabited place, nobody knows if that thing could actually glow in the dark or jump-start a Nuclear Power Plant, and nobody will ever know.

  31. Shadow Systems Silver badge

    1M? 10M? Bah. Pansies!

    I gave myself a 1T SHU suppository & haven't noticed any ill effects... other than the pillar of smoke & fire shooting out my arse during liftoff. I'll let you know if anything bad happens when my orbit returns to Earth...

    Hey look! I just passed Halley's comet!

  32. Big-nosed Pengie

    Chillis or peppers? Can't be both.

    1. jake Silver badge

      Chillis are a variety of peppers, Pengie.

      It's not the modern world's problem that Columbus lied his ass off about finding "pepper" in his travels, we just use the name he provided. Too late to change it now ... and no point in trying, either.

  33. jake Silver badge

    Lots of misinformation in these comments.

    All y'all who are absolutely certain of your facts about chilies might want to make certain that you're not propagating myths.

    "What gets us into trouble is not what we don't know. It's what we know for sure that just ain't so." --Clemens

  34. Richard Scratcher
    Alert

    Always read the label.

    I once accidentally sprinkled pepper onto my chips instead of salt. It made me sneeze....twice!

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