We have all experienced an intense burning in the mouth after eating very spicy food. But do you know the best drink to soothe that unpleasant sensation? If you have your doubts, below we tell you which drink you should have on hand so that you can act as soon as possible.
It is common that after eating something spicy there is a burning effect in the pit of the stomach, which is difficult to calm down. Many traditional and not so classic dishes as well as sausages and other preparations made with pork meat often include spices in their preparation that can cause this sensation.
Capsaicin is the active component of spices, which is irritating and causes a strong burning sensation. In reality, the spiciness is a defense mechanism that chili peppers develop in order to inhibit the development of fungi. In mammals, the TRPV1 receptor is responsible for the burning sensation, since capsaicin binds to it in the mucous membranes of the mouth, allowing cations to pass from the membrane into the cell.
A group of researchers from Pennsylvania State University decided to look for the best drink to calm the effects of capsaicin. In the study, they tested beverages such as water, cherry flavored powdered mix, whole or skim milk, non-beer alcohol and sparkling water. Participants ingested a cocktail containing capsaicin and then tasted the beverages to see if they could measure their effect on reducing burning in the mouth. All helped, but milk produced the best results. The participants found no difference between skim milk and whole milk.
So milk is the most appropriate solution. Capsaicin is insoluble in water, but highly soluble in lipids. Milk contains a type of protein known as casein, which is fat-soluble and can wrap around capsaicin molecules and remove them before they further stimulate the receptors responsible for the burning and stinging sensation.