Eating world’s hottest pepper sparks brain disorder, thunderclap headaches

Enlarge / Mature Carolina Reaper. (credit: Magnolia677)

Extremely hot peppers don’t just blister your mouth and bum—they can also spark fiery havoc in your brain, according to a report published Monday in BMJ Case Reports.

An otherwise healthy 34-year-old man developed a blood-flow disorder in his brain and suffered several debilitating “thunderclap” headaches after entering a hot pepper eating contest, US doctors reported. The man had managed to get down a Carolina Reaper pepper, which in 2013 earned the title of the world’s hottest chili by Guinness World Records.

In 2013, the Carolina Reaper—a cross between Sweet Habanero and Naga Viper chilies—clocked in at 1,569,300 Scoville Heat Units (SHU), a unit of measure for a chili’s spiciness. For comparison, jalapeños fall in the range of 2,500 and 8,000 SHUs, while ghost peppers (Bhut Jolokia) register at just over 800,000. In 2017, the Carolina Reaper took the title again, with a pepper grown in South Carolina that measured 1,641,183 SHUs. (Though there have been reports of a “Pepper X” measuring 3.18 million SHUs, it has yet to be confirmed by Guinness World Records.)

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Source: FS – All – Science – News
Eating world’s hottest pepper sparks brain disorder, thunderclap headaches