Why does spicy food feel hot? 

Cosmos Magazine


Cosmos is a quarterly science magazine. We aim to inspire curiosity in ‘The Science of Everything’ and make the world of science accessible to everyone.

By Cosmos

We all know the feeling – sweat forming on your brow and your face heating up. Eating something spicy is not an easy thing to forget.

Year 12 student Stephanie wanted to know why spicy food is just so hot. In this episode of Podcast Next Gen she discovers why a study used strawberry jam spiked with capsaicin, why one food acts like tear gas, and why you might need to fake it to you make it when it comes to spice. 

Podcast Next Gen is a collaboration between Cosmos Magazine and the National Youth Science Forum. The reporters are year 12 students from across Australia – the next generation of scientists, science journalists and podcasters.

These ‘shortcast’ episodes have been written and recorded by the students, giving them the opportunity to work with real science journalists and editors to make their science concept come to life.

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