How to Neutralize Spiciness in Your Mouth


Introduction: How to Neutralize Spiciness in Your Mouth

This is a guide on how to get rid of the heat in your mouth when it becomes unbearable to deal with. This contains one of the most effective methods to get rid of a lot of spiciness with little use of beverages.

Step 1: Understanding Spiciness

Spiciness is commonly related to peppers, but it can also be caused by other foods and is consistent with more acidic foods. Although acidic foods are not always spicy, a majority of spicy foods are acidic. There is a measurement of capsaicin in peppers and what it takes to dilute it with water. The numbers on the Scoville scale are equivalent to how many cups of water it takes to dilute the capsaicin in the specified food. So when a pepper reaches 300,000 Scoville units... it becomes hopeless to dilute the capsaicin with water. This is especially difficult due to the fact that capsaicin is an oil and water mainly just moves it around. That is where other liquids and beverages come in handy in neutralizing the capsaicin.

For a more public setting solution go to step four!

Step 2: Neutralizing Spiciness for the Lactose Tolerant

The most common go to for getting rid of the heat (aside from water) is milk. Some people believe that if they drink enough milk they can get rid of the burn, but instead of destroying it... they just move it to their stomachs. The method I know of may not be the most polite, but it will stop the burn. The method I use is quite simple and effective as long as you follow these steps:

1. Fill your mouth partway up with milk

2. Swish the milk around to mix it with the heat

3. Spit it out instead of swallowing it

4. Repeat these steps up to 4 times

The most it ever took me to do this was 2 times. However, the results may not be the same if you eat a Bhut Jolokia (Ghost pepper) when you can barely handle a Jalapeno.

Go to step three if Lactose Intolerant!

Step 3: Neutralizing Spiciness for the Lactose Intolerant

The concept is the same as that of milk, but the steps are slightly different:

1. Put about a teaspoon of white sugar into your mouth

2. Let your saliva dissolve the sugar

3. Swish the liquid around your entire mouth

4. Spit the liquid out

5. Repeat this process up to four times

Same rules apply as the milk.

Step 4: Neutralizing Spiciness in a Public Setting

If you happen to run into a spicy food problem at a restaurant you will not want to be spitting out liquids. Here are the steps for anyone to take in such a scenario:

1. Bring some sugary gum with you

2. Chew the gum for a few minutes (at max)

3. As you would normally do with gum... spit it out discreetly

I hope this has been an informative Instructable. Good luck and have fun in your spicy food adventures!



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    17 Discussions

    Got some Bird's Eye Pepper oil in my eye as a child. My grandmother washed my eye out with fresh squeezed coconut milk. It didn't work as quickly as I wanted, but I seem to remember that it worked. Canned coconut milk would probably work too. I'm not sure if coconut juice would though.

    FYI - for those who are interested, Coconut milk and coconut juice are 2 different things. Coconut juice is harvested by simply cracking the nut open and catching the juice in a receptacle as it drains out. Coconut milk is created by scraping the hard white flesh from inside an older coconut. Once the flesh is scraped out it needs to be put in a piece of fabric, like cheesecloth, and the milk wrung out.

    Just an FYI... the pepper in the first picture is know as a 7 Pot Brain Strain pepper and is about equivalent to the world record holder at the moment. I did not eat it, but when I received it... just holding it burned me. Although... I am fine now.

    You should also try chewing some gum, it works really well.

    1 reply

    This might be a good solution when you are home, but what if you are eating out at a fine restaurant? What beverage would be your best bet? I realize that regardless of beverage choice, one would not be spitting it out at a restaurant, but just moving the heat away from the mouth is still preferable I would say. Ideas?

    1 reply

    I think Arickeg has a great point, but the gum will only work if it has a decent sugar content.

    "C'mon Ice Cream!!" was all I could think about. LOL!

    I forget which Cheech & Chong movie the line was from.

    What's Popeye's Chicken?

    It's a place where you get fried chicken, red beans and rice, and banana pudding.

    Why banana pudding?

    So when your on the pot and the chicken is leaving, you can be prayin' for the puddin'!

    i got your message in my email and thought WTF!! It make much more sense to read your comment on the end of the instuctable.....

    I have done the milk trick, but didn't know that gum worked too. Nice tip.

    try a piece of choclate. Helps mutch more than milk.

    You could just go to the restroom. Take your rinsing solution with you. What are they going to do?

    if one needs to resort to this, why eat the chilly in the first place!!

    1 reply

    walkernstan- someone may be trying a particular pepper for the first time not knowing what the results will be.Been there,done that,got the tee-shirt !