The Pepper Police™
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You sit down with your meal and prepare it with “a little kick” or bring a few chili peppers with you to the table. You take a few bites when all of a sudden, as if someone lit your mouth on fire, the burn and spread of the chili pepper heat becomes all but too unbearable leading to the all too familiar fiery symptoms of the
•Scorching of the tongue and mouth
•Watering and tearing of the eyes
•Burning and ringing of the ears
•Drooling of the mouth
•Non-stop runny nose
And dare we not forget the inevitable ticking time bomb that makes us wish we had a fire-extinguishing-bidet and a pile of snow to sit on…
So what makes chili peppers so hot? Let's get nerdy and down to the nitty gritty on these heat torpedoes. Read more.
What Makes Chili Peppers So Hot?
Capsaicinoids are the chemicals which give rise to the heat of chilies. They are present in almost every pepper. Capsaicinoids are the name given to the class of compounds found present in members of the capsicum family of plants. Capsaicin is the main capsaicinoid in chili peppers, followed by dihydrocapsaicin. Capsaicin is present in large quantities in the placental tissue (which holds the seeds), the internal membranes and, to a lesser extent, the other fleshy parts of the fruits of plants in the genus Capsicum. The seeds themselves do not produce any capsaicin, although the highest concentration of capsaicin can be found in the white pith of the inner wall, where the seeds are attached.
What Is Capsaicin?
Capsaicin is a fatty alkaline oil and an active component of chili peppers. It is an irritant for mammals, including humans, and produces a sensation of burning in any tissue with which it comes into contact. Capsaicin and several related compounds are called capsaicinoids and are produced as secondary metabolites by chili peppers, probably as deterrents against certain mammals and fungi. Pure capsaicin is a volatile, hydrophobic, colorless, odorless, crystalline to waxy compound.
What Are the Effects of Capsaicin?
The capsaicinoids in chili bind to a receptor in the lining of the mouth (mucous membranes). This is the same receptor that registers pain from heat, thus the effect is a burning feeling. Capsaicin can also block the production of certain neurotransmitters, preventing nerves from communicating with each other. Similarly, these same sensitive nerve endings are present in the anus which also give rise to the burning sensation experienced when undigested capsaicin exits the body during bowel movements.
Capsaicin also takes effect upon skin contact (irritant, sensitizer), eye contact (irritant), ingestion, and inhalation (lung irritant, lung sensitizer). With that being said, capsaicinoids won't actually attack your tissue or cause a chemical burn. The molecules bind to a pain receptor, so you may suffer excruciating agony, but your body isn't being harmed by the chemical.
Repeated exposure to capsaicinoids depletes these receptors, enabling you to eat hotter chilies and feel the same effect. The pain caused by this leads to the release of endorphins, the body's natural painkillers. These give a feeling of happiness and well-being.
Additionally, when chilies are eaten, the capsaicinoids irritate the trigeminal cells (pain receptors located in the mouth, nose and stomach), which release a chemical known as substance P into the blood which tells the brain you've eaten something hot. The brain responds by sending out the “fire squad” flushing the body with water to try and douse the flames, which is why after consuming a particularly hot chili some people suddenly break into a sweat, their nose runs and their eyes start to stream.
The trigeminal cells are also connected to the production of endorphins, morphine-like natural painkillers that produce a sense of well-being. It is the rush generated from the release of endorphins that is often cited as the reason why some "chiliheads" become addicted to fiery foods. Repeated consumption of chilies is also believed to confuse trigeminal cells, which is also why some of your 'Chili Monster' friends seem to have built up a tolerance to capsaicin and can eat the hottest habanero without even flinching.
What Is Not Effective Against Capsaicin?
Plain water is ineffective at removing capsaicin or stopping the burning effect due to the fact that oil-based capsaicin won't dissolve in water. On the contrary, water spreads the burning to parts that weren't previously affected.
Alcohol such as beer is useless against the heat of a hot pepper. Chasing hot food with alcohol will magnify the burn because capsaicin will dissolve in alcohol however it will not be neutralized by it and, as with water, you'll only spread the burn around to parts that weren't previously affected. The exception here would be if you've had enough alcohol to dull pain reception.
Carbonated beverages such as sodas and energy drinks as well as hot drinks including hot tea and coffee will cause the same effects as water, if not heighten the burn, due to their ineffectiveness to break down capsaicin and again, spread the burn to parts that weren't previously affected.
What Is Effective Against Capsaicin?
The fat-loving protein called casein found in milk acts as a natural detergent, breaking up and dissolving the capsaicin and therefore, allowing it to wash away. Many dairy products also contain fat which can help to dissolve the capsaicin as well.
Additionally, the heat in the chili peppers is quantified by the amount of sugar needed to neutralize heat (measured in Scoville Heat Units (SHU)) using what is known as the Scoville scale. Therefore, sweet, sugary products will also help alleviate and neutralize the chili pepper burning sensation.
For external exposure such as hands or skin, bathing the surfaces that have contacted capsaicin with oily compounds such as vegetable oil, paraffin oil, petroleum jelly (Vaseline), creams, or polyethylene glycol is an effective way to attenuate the associated discomfort; since oil and capsaicin are both hydrophobic hydrocarbons, the capsaicin that has not already been absorbed into tissues will be picked up into solution and easily removed.
How The Pepper Police™ Products and Exclusive Formulas Work For You
The Pepper Police™ products are the first and only revolutionary products in the world to be specifically designed, developed, and formulated to protect and serve the chili pepper community from the unforgiving wrath of chili pepper flames at entry, exit, and upon contact. Using much of the data outlined above, we have tested and verified that the formulas, solutions, and ingredients used to produce The Pepper Police™ products are of superior quality and effective against neutralizing the effects of capsaicin and extinguishing the flames caused by chili peppers.
Casein is the main ingredient responsible for extinguishing the chili pepper flames due largely to its chemical composition and unique ability to break down capsaicin molecules.
The Pepper Police™ Casein Wipe products are strategically infused with natural casein properties in addition to various other active compounds that assist in the process of breaking down and dissolving capsaicin and ultimately, extinguishing the chili pepper flames.
Additionally, our unique casein protein products are custom formulated and exclusively manufactured for The Pepper Police™ and are strategically formulated to deliver a higher concentrated, more potent dose of casein per overall ounce in addition to its various other chili-combating infused ingredients. Using this unique approach, higher levels of concentrated casein compounds are strategically delivered to the chili affected area; essentially speeding up the break-down process of binded capsaicin molecules to help extinguish the most excruciating of flames!
When you purchase The Pepper Police™ products, rest assured that you're receiving top quality, uniquely developed and specially formulated products specifically designed to help extinguish the chili pepper flames!
The Pepper Police™ products are the antidote, magic potion, & elixir you have been waiting for. Whether you're a genuine chilihead, a victim of letting your hand slip with the chili bottle, or simply someone who won't back down from a pepper challenge, The Pepper Police™ products are exactly what you need to help extinguish the fiery burn of the chili pepper flames. Yes, it's finally here.
All of our products are 100% Made in the United States of America