Ahhh, Me Sphincter! Dr Karl Goes Deep On Why Spicy Foods Burn Ya Arse

Is there anything Dr Karl Kruszelnicki can’t prove?
Last week he demystified why some of us hate broccoli. In 2014, he proved white men can dance (at a Yeezy concert, no less). Since the seventies, he’s been a living example of the molecular intersection of science and being a dang hunk-o-spunk. (Also has a Noble Prize.)
dayum africa ur milkshake bringing me way beyond the yard
On the triple j airwaves yesterday, he answered a very brave soul’s burning question. Ella from Blackwood asked “how come when I eat spicy food, it burns my bum on the way out?”

As Dr K explains, the amount of damage last night’s Rajma Masala has on your arsehole has got to do with how many heat receptors you have “down there”:
“On your tongue, you have special receptors for heat, and those receptors for heat react to capsaicin, the active ingredient in chillies,” he says. “People have a variable number of these receptors down there.”

“I’ve not been able to find a significant paper in this, but I’ve spoken to some people who get a really hard burn on the way out, and some people get nothing. Birds have got zero receptors at all, so they can eat chilli and spray it around the world widely.”

A moment of silence now please, for those with extra spice-detecting arses. I feel you.

Photo: Along Came Polly.