German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment also warns of “Hot Chip Challenge”

German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment also warns of “Hot Chip Challenge”

Excessive consumption of spicy foods can lead to “serious health problems”: “In the past, cases have repeatedly been reported in which undesirable effects such as irritation of the mucous membranes, nausea, vomiting and high blood pressure were observed.” Children in particular reacted sensitively to hot chili products.

The BfR warns in particular against spicy eating competitions or tests of courage in which very spicy foods or large quantities of extremely hot chili sauce and chili extracts are eaten. “In this case, serious health impairments are possible, which can potentially be life-threatening.”

Dangerous challenge especially for children and young people

The institute explicitly addressed the “Hot Chip Challenge” that was circulating on social media. The challenge is to eat particularly spicy corn tortilla chips that are heavily seasoned with Carolina Reaper, said to be the hottest chili variety in the world. There are numerous videos on the Internet of people taking part in the test of courage. There are many children and young people among them.

“In some cases, consumption has already led to emergency medical calls,” said the BfR. In August there was a major medical operation in Euskirchen (North Rhine-Westphalia) because several fifth-graders had eaten the spicy chips. The children had to be treated for stomach pains as well as skin and respiratory irritations.

A maximum of 5 milligrams per kilogram of body weight for adults

According to the institute, the sharp, burning taste is caused by ingredients in the chili from the group of so-called capsaicinoids. This also includes the spicy substance capsaicin, which is contained in the Carolina Reaper. The substances are produced by numerous types of peppers – which also include the chili – in order to prevent predators from eating the fruits.

The institute assumes that an adult can consume a maximum of five milligrams of capsaicin per kilogram of body weight without any problems. The BfR recommends labeling products with contents of more than 100 milligrams of capsaicin per kilogram of food and providing the packaging with child-resistant closures.

Source: Nachrichten

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