Calif man eats ghost pepper on a challenge and burns hole in his esophagus

The are plenty of viral videos out there showing people participating in strange and crazy food challenges. These are supposed to be funny and most of the time they are completely harmless except for some digestive discomfort and possible a lifetime of embarrassment.

But certain foods and spices need be dealt with much more cautiously as they can cause very serious medical issues and sometimes result in death.

For one unlucky 47-year old man from the San Francisco Bay Area, a food challenge left him with an extended hospital stay, a rupture in his esophagus, and a gastric tube.

As crazy as it sounds, this really happened. In fact it was recently documented in a case study in the Journal of Emergency Medicine. The food in this challenge was a very hot pepper. To be exact- the bhut jolokia, more commonly known as the “Ghost Pepper”.

The Ghost Pepper

In 2007, Guinness World Records certified that the Ghost pepper was the world’s hottest chili pepper, 400 times hotter than Tabasco sauce. The Ghost chili is rated at more than 1 million Scoville heat units (SHUs). However, the ghost chili was shortly superseded by the Infinity chili in 2011, followed by the Naga Viper, the Trinidad moruga scorpion in 2012, and the Carolina Reaper on August 7, 2013 (source- Wikipedia)

The website howstuffworks gives this description of eating a ghost pepper-

“When you bite into a ghost pepper, your mouth feels heat in the most extreme way. Your tongue’s receptors register the intensity of the pepper and relay that information to your brain, which interprets the pepper as a burning, pain-inducing interloper. This causes a chain reaction in your body as the capsaicin in the ghost pepper initiates widespread tissue inflammation and begins to wreak havoc on your nerve endings, dilating blood vessels and making you feel hot all over. Suddenly, you’re too, too hot.”

The aftermath

According to livescience, this is what transpired:

“In the man’s case, a ghost pepper had been pureed and served atop a hamburger as a part of an eating contest at local restaurant. After finishing the pepper-topped burger, the man drank six large glasses of water, then began “violently retching and vomiting,” according to the report, which was published online in September in the Journal of Emergency Medicine.”

The man ended up going to the emergency room in San Francisco because he couldn’t stop vomiting, and developed severe chest and stomach pain, the authors wrote.

A CT scan of the man’s chest appeared to show that his esophagus was torn and that his left lung had collapsed, so the man was sent for emergency surgery.

During the operation, the surgeons found a 2.5-centimeter (1 inch) tear in the man’s esophagus. The tear was leaking food — a mix of “hamburger, onions and other green vomitus material” — into the space around the man’s left lung, which had collapsed, according to the report. The surgeons repaired the man’s esophagus and re-inflated his lung, then placed him on a feeding tube so that his esophagus could heal.


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Is it REALLY possible to lose 11 lbs. of fat in 22 days?  Actually yes… BUT only when you’re a level 4 fat burner.  Unfortunately, most people are stuck as level 1 fat burners.  So, how do you become a level 4 fat burner to lose up to 11 lbs. in 22 days?  Simply eat these foods daily:

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Did you know that one of the best times to stretch is right before bed? However…

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=> Best stretch before bed (takes 1-min)

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Lisa, Yoga Coach
eatlocalgrown / wisemindhealthybody


Stop Snoring in 3 Minutes - Starting Tonight

...easy, 3-minute exercise that completely cured his horrendous snoring! We can both finally sleep!

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In the years that I've been working on this website project I've come across some amazing resources by some very special people. I'd like to share them with you here.

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Rick D.
wisemindhealthybody.com