You can find unlimited variety of very spicy peppers in the whole world. But have you ever wondered; what is that ‘one thing’ that makes it s- so spicy? Well it is called ‘capsaicin’, a chemical made naturally by the pepper as it grows.
What is Capsaicin?
Capsaicin is a chemical compound that produces a sensation of heat by irritating nerve endings. This chemical may also offer health benefits -- it may help control blood sugar and manage cholesterol and help manage muscle and joint pain associated with arthritis and fibromyalgia.
Just like other plants and animals evolved to be the way they are out of need, peppers produced the capsaicin and became spicy because it benefits them in some way as a plant. Some researchers think that capsaicin helps a pepper plant to avoid getting sick with certain kinds of diseases (like fungi) that other plants can get. Being so spicy also probably helped peppers to be eaten by some animals but not all – plants that bear fruit like it when their fruits are eaten because it helps their seeds to be dispersed. But being eaten by animals who will chew up the seeds is less helpful; by being hot and spicy, peppers were only eaten by certain helpful diners… like spicy-food-loving humans!