What Makes a Spicy Food Spicy?

By Maggie Swofford, Contributor

Learn the science behind spiciness in this video by Ted Ed.

Contrary to popular belief, spiciness is actually the product of receptors around your body--mouth and nose included--that are activated by intense heat or cold. The reaction is one that is similar to if your body was actually in contact with a heat source.

“This is why you start to sweat and your heart starts beating faster. The peppers have elicited the same fight or flight response like your body reacts to most threats.”

Watch on to learn more about how someone would up his/her pain tolerance to spicy foods.