Last week, Gizmodo and other outlets reported on the case of a man who ate a ghost pepper at a chili-eating contest—and wound up in the ER with “thunderclap headaches,” involving “incredibly painful bursts of head pain.” Over a week later, the man appears to be completely healed.
In defense of the ghost pepper’s now-damaged rep, a farmer says that’s definitely not the way to eat a ghost pepper in the first place. The Washington Post reports on Salvatore Genovese, a farmer from Bedfordshire, England, who says, “We have sold, in the past couple of years or so, over half a million Carolina Reapers and I have never had any knowledge or any complaint of anyone having to be hospitalized.” Instead of daring to “plonk it in your mouth and eat it,” he suggests, “Just cook with it—make a curry, infuse it slowly [and] take it out if you want to afterwards, and get the rich flavors from that superhot chile. The way I always put it, is treat it like salt. You’re not going to take a handful of salt and put it in your food and say, ‘Wow I’ve got a wicked salt kick.’ Just use small amounts, use accordingly.”
It’s true. There are so many horrific YouTube videos nowadays about the idiotic cinnamon challenge or chugging a two-liter bottle of soda or similar: These are not the way these food items are supposed to be used! If you really want to stretch your body, go climb a mountain or run a marathon or something.
[Note: Gizmodo, like The Takeout, is owned by Univision Communications.]