Eating spicy food is a common occurrence in most parts of the world. For fanatics, it can almost be akin to a guilty pleasure. While some variations may not be the healthiest type of food to eat, it certainly does a great job of satiating those cravings. After all, flavors make the world more vibrant and enjoyable.
Feasting on spicy food carelessly, though, can make you feel really uncomfortable if not done right. Hence, some tips for dealing with spicy foods are provided below.
1. Start Slow And Steady
If you’ve only just begun appreciating eating spicy food, you may want to take it easy. It is highly suggested that you learn to do so nicely and slowly. Pace yourself moderately; there is no need to overdo it and tackle more spice than you can handle. Start your way up from mild, gradual, and eventually spicier when you’re ready. Opt-out of surprises. This allows you to explore your spice preferences and favorites thoroughly, and gives your body and mouth the time it needs to adjust. Slowly building up your tolerance for spicy food helps your system to comfortably consume it with ease.
2. Take Medication If Needed
Much like hangover medicine, various over-the-counter meds can help alleviate the discomforts brought about by eating too much spicy food during a short period of time. These feelings may include variations of the following.
An upset stomach or your stomach burning after eating can occur after eating spicy food because these foods are incorporated with ingredients high in acid content. Heartburn can also be triggered by ingesting too much spice. Spicy food can also irritate the senses; the mouth and nose are commonly vulnerable to them. When irritated, this can lead to mucus build-up and a sore throat in some cases. Although such symptoms can be mild, they can still be pretty uncomfortable to bear.
3. Fill Your Stomach Beforehand
Having a spicy meal as your first meal of the day or on an empty stomach is possibly not the best idea, especially since your stomach and taste buds are just starting to explore and branch out. This is even more so true if you have a sensitive gut and are just beginning to truly enjoy the thrill of spicy food. Ingesting some food to act as a cushion beforehand can help prevent upset stomachs and heartburn caused by the acidity of spicy food.
4. Why Drinking Can Effectively Help
Milk and dairy products contain a molecule called casein which can help neutralize the spiciness in food, commonly attributed to an enzyme called capsaicin found in peppers. The casein in milk helps separate the two and can thus prevent capsaicin from remaining on the tongue glands for much longer. And although drinking a lot of water doesn’t necessarily relieve an over-exposure to spice, consuming fluids still allows you to cleanse your palette. This helps your stomach feel more comfortable and will enable you to stay hydrated throughout the process.
5. Sugar And Honey May Save The Day
While sweetness doesn’t necessarily overpower spiciness and completely remove it, sugar and honey may still be able to help in soothing the burns from too much spiciness. This is because sugar and honey can absorb the oil-soluble capsaicin. They can also bring new flavors that can somewhat influence the taste in the mouth and counterbalance the two opposing tastes.
6. Consume Carbohydrates Specifically
Consuming carbohydrates after eating spicy foods may also provide immediate relief. This is because the starch in these foods can act as a barrier between capsaicin and the tongue glands. Thus, this promotes the separation of the two and shields the mouth, which in turn can help mitigate the spiciness of the food.
7. Alkaline Foods Surprisingly Work Too
The alkaline found in food like limes, lemons, oranges, and tomatoes is actually able to bind with capsaicin which can, in turn, quite effectively neutralize it. This works because acids can counteract acids. If the other options above aren’t readily available to you, try using these foods instead.
Spicy food is popular all over the world. So, eating spicy food is surely an enjoyable experience beloved by many. Whether you’re just starting out on your spicy adventure or have been on the spicy journey for a while now, health and comfort should ultimately come first. The key to conquering spicy food lies in safeguarding your stomach and tastebuds. The above mentioned points are simple ways you can do so and can make your spice-eating experience more comfortable overall.
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