Here to answer all your BURNING questions! Hahaha… See what I did there?
How Hot is the Carolina Reaper Pepper?
For all you brave souls who are intrigued by this, listen up. The Carolina Reaper is the hottest pepper known to man ranking in at 1,569,300 Scoville Heat Units. That’s a hot Pepper! To put that in perspective, that’s about 300 times hotter than even the most intense jalapeño…. C-Reap (rap name) holds quite the punch. A big trend today is to have challenges where people eat the reaper consequently for losing a bet or even just for their own curiosity. They film their reactions, and are hilarious to watch!
What happens to you if you eat the Carolina Reaper?
I mean besides the obvious, IT BURNS!!! What else is there to it, and what are some of the longer lasting results of eating the pepper???? When I was asked if I would ever eat the pepper, naturally, the first thing that came to my mind was, “COULD I DIE??” Yikes! I understand that thought may be a little dramatic, but with heat like that, I am very concerned with the physical and even emotional pain that the pepper evokes.
Well to answer that question, let me tell you about my little friend, Capsaicin. This is what makes the pepper feel like you are trapped in Satan’s armpit. It’s a molecular compound that’s in every part of the Carolina Reaper except for the seeds. The highest concentration is found in the inner wall where the seeds are attached.
So, when you ingest the capsaicin, it stimulates nerve endings that tell your brain that it’s feeling pain. Your body reacts the same way it would if it were going under attack from a severe burn. Your cells would prepare to heal the burn, so as a result, the first few seconds will have a mediocre burn that comes on. You think, “Okay, maybe it’s not that bad.” But as soon as you think you’re tough, a brick of pain hits your body. As capsaicin spreads through your mouth, it binds to TRPV1 receptors, which your body uses to detect heat. These receptors are typically activated by temperatures more than 110°F, but once the capsaicin latches on, the activation temperature drops to about 93°F, says Nadia Byrnes, Ph.D. That’s lower than your natural body temperature. “Now the warmth of your own mouth trips the receptor and creates a burning sensation,” she says. Substance P, a neuropeptide that signals pain, travels to your brain, unleashing a cascade of defensive biological reactions.
How long will that sensation last?
If you are going to endure all of the pain that comes with eating the world’s hottest pepper, of course you will want to know how long the sensation lasts. There is no precise scientific answer to this question because it does vary from person to person. Some people report that the burning sensation in your mouth can last up to 20 minutes, but the digestive pain can last anywhere from 2-5 hours. A man by the name of Matt Gross ate three of the C-Reaps in 2014 to break a Guinness world record and noted that it took him around 14 hours to fully recover.
Either way, we get that the pepper is hot, but eating one would sure get some nice bragging rights. If you are brave enough to try this pepper, try buying some of our Carolina Reaper seeds or any of our other seeds. I guarantee that we’ll have something you’ll love. We also have a plethora of other products to check out as well. Our hot sauce is HOT! (or mild, whatever you prefer.) You can keep up with Pepper Joe's by following us on Facebook and Instagram. We LOVE feedback, so don’t hesitate to let us know how we’re doing or to ask us questions. Your question could even be covered in a future blog post!
Well, that’s all for this time. Thanks for reading, and remember… “We’re growing hotter every day!”
~Hannah A.K.A. HaubHANero