How Chilis Got Spicy (and Why We Love the Burn)

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Ciencia y tecnología

Today, chilis are the most widely cultivated spice crop in the world - grown everywhere from their native home in the Americas to Europe, Africa, and Asia. But how and why did chilis evolve this weird, fiery trick in the first place? And why did we learn to love that spicy burn?
Big thanks to Julio Lacerda ( JulioTheArtist​​) for the excellent Capsicum domestication illustration!
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  1. lanietalk
    Hace 28 minutos

    wow we’re really all masochists

  2. lanietalk
    Hace 34 minutos

    Chilis are grown on 100% of North America omg

  3. Phillip Scharf
    Phillip Scharf
    Hace 2 horas

    Kind of gets you high... If you eat a pepper strong enough you don't even get the pain bit, you just go straight into "chemical relief".

  4. Fnidner
    Hace 3 horas

    wat up, my fellow great ape dispersers??

  5. Ray Drouillard
    Ray Drouillard
    Hace 6 horas

    Chilis aren't the only genus that has benefited greatly from humans' eating habits. There are currently more chickens than people in the world -- pretty good for a domesticated version of the red jungle fowl. Ruminants like cows, sheep, and goats are doing well, too. When vat or 3D printed meat becomes cheaper than regular meat, the population of those meat animals will plummet. Hopefully, someone will keep at least some around so that they don't go extinct.

  6. The Den
    The Den
    Hace 7 horas

    I don't know if you guys are still looking for "good" evolution/geology jokes, but here's a treasured joke from the Pacific NW anyway: Mt. Hood and Mt. St. Helen's used to be a happy couple some millennia ago. Unfortunately, Mt. Hood had an affair with the 3 Sisters and St. Helen's blew her top. Edit: grammar is hard you guys

  7. westeN westeN
    westeN westeN
    Hace 9 horas

    you dont explain one thing. we got stomachache when we eat too many capsaicin, do those animal got the same problem as well?

  8. Muskarts
    Hace 10 horas

    I just love learning new things!

  9. HailMammon Moments
    HailMammon Moments
    Hace 10 horas

    Came for the dinosaurs. Definitely staying for the real history of human civilization. 🔥💕🤘

  10. Amboula Rozzo
    Amboula Rozzo
    Hace 11 horas

    all nightshade plants wreck havoc on your circulatory system

  11. Carmine's RC Tips and Tricks!
    Carmine's RC Tips and Tricks!
    Hace 15 horas

    Kallie... As always, you were enlightening and extremely Charming!! It's always a joy to see you present. ....... But half this Video, all I was thinking was POOR HANK!!! 😜😂

  12. Blueberry Lane
    Blueberry Lane
    Hace 17 horas

    This was surprisingly informative for such a short video, great work!

  13. Jack Snavely
    Jack Snavely
    Hace 18 horas

    It's called HOT- the word -SPICEY- is for lite weights that don't eat them! 😁👍👍

  14. Sarah Fortin
    Sarah Fortin
    Hace 21 un hora

    6:43 guy is dying from the heat AND STILL EATING IT. Commitment!

  15. Ha Chi Nguyen
    Ha Chi Nguyen
    Hace 21 un hora

    Puffer fish: has poison to avoid being eaten Chilli: has capsicum so mammals can't consume . Human: i eat all

  16. Richard Mountz
    Richard Mountz
    Hace un día

    Actually my heifer Shadow LOVES doing heat shots with me. I make my own sauce's, put it on a mushroom slice. CHOMP..

  17. Vidal Baca
    Vidal Baca
    Hace un día

    Thanks for skipping New Mexico on ur map or even mentioning us known for green chili it’s the only place that green chili grows yes there may be different kinds of chilies but green chili is only growing in New Mexico I can even go to McDonald’s and get a green chili double cheeseburger if anybody’s been in New Mexico they know we put green chili on everything

  18. typograf62
    Hace un día

    Humans are really weird animals. They'll eat anything, even stuff that a sensible rat would not touch.

  19. Tuan Minh Nguyen
    Tuan Minh Nguyen
    Hace un día

    "Level of 2 neurotransmitters suddenly rise, endorphin and dopamine" Hmmm sounds like drugs. It is definitely a drug and I am addicted to it 😂😂😂

  20. Xavier2291
    Hace un día

    As a Latino I cant get enough of pique :) Chili peppers are the best! The sweet burn is awesome.

  21. Diname123 Deer
    Diname123 Deer
    Hace un día

    this channel should not be pbs eons, it such be "epoch"

  22. Bubbles of the Coast
    Bubbles of the Coast
    Hace un día

    So you're telling me that we like spices because we're all secretly masochists.... yea I can see that xD

  23. Leonardo Milani
    Leonardo Milani
    Hace un día

    0:55 this map is not exactly accurate, as Brazilians eat loads of pepper and many people cultivate them at home. Maybe you're talking about mass agricultural production (wich we also do).

  24. Matthew Maxwell
    Matthew Maxwell
    Hace un día

    So if the burning sensation we feel is from the body releasing chemicals to activate that receptor to make us feel that, approximately how much of pain is resulting from fire and how much is from our own bodies warning us?.

  25. Marcelo Almeida
    Marcelo Almeida
    Hace un día

    knowing the Amazon basin was a hub of domestication and interexchanging of vegetables, including spicies, and later on seeing most of if out of the map on the video hurt more than i thought imaginable.

  26. Ruben La Rochelle
    Ruben La Rochelle
    Hace un día

    1:40 Wait, what happened there? Teleportation?

  27. SeaJay Oceans
    SeaJay Oceans
    Hace un día

    To the generations that dedicated their lives to raising Chili peppers, THANK YOU !

  28. TheSokwe
    Hace un día

    The acknowledgement at the end there, made me very happy.

  29. Bodhi Spears
    Bodhi Spears
    Hace un día

    Rather than the silent tribute to native people's, why don't you do an episode about archaeology and native people's lands?

  30. Aurelijus Sipkauskas
    Aurelijus Sipkauskas
    Hace un día

    Please explain me that map that shows where they grow chillys nowadays! Finland is marked red while Baltic’s grey. Some kind of nonsense. Please explain if that map has some meaning or it’s just some random colouring

  31. Mike Honcho
    Mike Honcho
    Hace un día

    Love this channel..... always hard to watch the Science and history videos whenever they have that cultist who was willing to manipulate science and information I’ll because he had a horrible case of “TDS”..... maybe Mr. Greene will change his ways

  32. Malo Otua
    Malo Otua
    Hace un día

    Chili mimics the spicy defenses of insects that birds eat. Chili looks like an insect. Birds got used to eating spicy insects, and chili mimics the flavors of insects. Chili is like a lure, a lure for chickens to eat.

  33. Galit JustMe
    Galit JustMe
    Hace un día

    I don’t understand how people can enjoy this. It’s so painful, it’s like shoving a working chainsaw in your mouth. Why would anyone want to add pain in their food?

  34. Timothy Sotir
    Timothy Sotir
    Hace un día

    Making myself an egg/cheese/habanero wrap in the morning. Wish me luck!

  35. Grey Wind
    Grey Wind
    Hace un día

    There are no Chilis in Russia?

  36. inverse_of_zero
    Hace un día

    This girl is so gosh dang cute 😍

  37. Sara3346
    Hace un día

    I am here because I too am curious as to how humans enjoy these because...well I don't.

  38. Dougall
    Hace un día

    Maybe also because we excrete them ASAP before we can properly digest them?

  39. legion999
    Hace un día

    Stop making me hungry scishow

  40. gibran trejo
    gibran trejo
    Hace un día

    I like how this implies chiles are sentient

  41. Richard Aponte
    Richard Aponte
    Hace 2 días

    Nope! Yes there are mammals like us that ARE afraid of that heat!!

  42. Matheus Ravel Timo Barbosa
    Matheus Ravel Timo Barbosa
    Hace 2 días

    Why Brazil is not appearing to cultivate any peppers in your maps? I’m Brazilian and a big fan of chilli peppers and they are really widespread through our culinary and largely cultivated

  43. Lord Grunwalder
    Lord Grunwalder
    Hace 2 días

    İf you think about it humans are literaly physchopats, we eating basically literally worst things to eat, alcohol is literaly poison, mint supposed to kill bugs and chilie is totally a fruit evolved for torture mammals...

    1. troy krentzs
      troy krentzs
      Hace 21 un hora

      And fermented food 😃

  44. Callum Thomas
    Callum Thomas
    Hace 2 días

    Could u do a video on if are past relatives had the ability to talk

  45. Jason
    Hace 2 días

    Watching this makes me want to eat something spicy.

  46. Fabiano Seixas Fernandes
    Fabiano Seixas Fernandes
    Hace 2 días


  47. Yvette Mari Robles
    Yvette Mari Robles
    Hace 2 días

    Lastly, it is a scientific fact that very hot chilies can and do burn tissue in the body. So it's not just in "the mind" as the video suggests. Chemical burn is real. People may experience swelling of bodily tissues in the mouth, lips, if they touch their eyes...and also their butthole.

  48. Yvette Mari Robles
    Yvette Mari Robles
    Hace 2 días

    I don't think it was just about thrill seeking and dopamine. I know in my family chilis are considered medicine. They help keep your digestion strong, keep pathogens in check, help move blood (circulation), and strengthen the immune system. Mexicans and people all over Latin America understand and know this to be true.

  49. DeathTheDolphin
    Hace 2 días

    In conclusion: humans are weird. Add that to the list of weird human things like fermented beverages, bread and soap

  50. Abhi Prakash
    Abhi Prakash
    Hace 2 días

    Ancient humans to birds : Look at me , look at me .... I'm the captain disperser now

  51. grovermatic
    Hace 2 días

    0:51 Russia, Y U no grow peppers? I'd think they'd like the extra heat during those insanely cold winters.

    1. troy krentzs
      troy krentzs
      Hace 21 un hora

      You dont want to get sweat during the insanely cold winter otherwise you'll catch pneunomia. People in tropical climate ate chilies so they could get sweat and cool their body off.

  52. Nobody
    Hace 2 días

    No real damage?! My anus tells me otherwise

  53. Ahmed Elshafey
    Ahmed Elshafey
    Hace 2 días

    9:50 Please Marry Meeee !!!

  54. deLeon2046
    Hace 2 días

    more of her pls

  55. Peter Robinson
    Peter Robinson
    Hace 2 días

    I'm of nordic decent, and l can't even look at one of these without pouring sweat, turning bright red and running for the fridge. No high, just pain.

  56. deLeon2046
    Hace 2 días

    she is so lovely

  57. The S.C.P Foundation
    The S.C.P Foundation
    Hace 2 días

    the chili is suffering from success we selectively bred it to be hotter but the purpose of the capsaicin was to ward us off lol

  58. ʜᴏɴᴇʏ ʙᴇᴇ
    ʜᴏɴᴇʏ ʙᴇᴇ
    Hace 2 días

    thank you for making the card at the end of the video. colonists taking your land hurts so bad.

  59. u know the rules & so do i
    u know the rules & so do i
    Hace 2 días

    Wait, are we human's daredevils or masochistic species

  60. Red Kite YT
    Red Kite YT
    Hace 2 días

    Can you do a video about the evolutionary story of modern-day raptors pls?

  61. Mojado News
    Mojado News
    Hace 2 días

    Me vale pija

  62. nelsongutierrez666
    Hace 2 días

    Awesome now I know why I'm addicted to spicy food lol

  63. jashinsamael
    Hace 2 días

    PBS Eons: "capsicin doesnt actually cause any physical damage, it's just a sensory illusion The magnificent seventh planet: "im humbly disagrees with that statement"

  64. Noah Snyder
    Noah Snyder
    Hace 2 días

    This channel is so great and informative!

  65. HenryManson
    Hace 2 días

    Step1: become spicey, so you dont get eaten step2: survive eons because of it Step3: being spread globally, because psychotic apes conquered planets & love the burn! Step4: being the first spice in space!

  66. Never
    Hace 2 días

    Chilli species are found on every content except Antarctica, Most, if not all of these have been used by humans. This history is incredibly America centric in both a culinary, cultural and scientific viewpoint, why arnt the Asian species even mentioned? or the Australian species used but not cultivated? And as to not causing actual harm, look into the irritant effect of caspium which can cause damage to stomach , eyes and mucus membranes if strong enough. This focuses only on the American species and how it was used and distributed to many places, not native species traditionally used by different cultures which would be much more accurate.

    1. troy krentzs
      troy krentzs
      Hace 21 un hora

      @Never it came from america bruh. Unless you talk about sinchuan pepper which is native to China.

    2. j r
      j r
      Hace 2 días

      @Never science says otherwise

    3. Never
      Hace 2 días

      @j r There are native species in every continent , not just America, do some research.

    4. j r
      j r
      Hace 2 días

      Because chili peppers came from the americas...

  67. Luis Martinex
    Luis Martinex
    Hace 2 días

    Chili and spicy food in general sucks

  68. PresidentWordSalad
    Hace 2 días

    Okay but why does it make my butthole burn?

  69. Alex Kairis
    Alex Kairis
    Hace 2 días

    Leave it to PBS to add an "ought not to have" to an "is".... urgh.

  70. brytered
    Hace 2 días

    8:07, Daniel, the Shrew, disagrees with comments about not feeling the heat as noted by his screaming, pained face. 8:15, Dan is unstuck from screaming and is searching for the nearest milk bar or a blanket to smother his flaming tongue.

  71. BioniclesaurKing4t2
    Hace 2 días

    Why do I suspect that "hot" peppers are called "chillis" for the same reason that the green Iceland and icy Greenland were named?

  72. acoow
    Hace 2 días

    Well .... Some of us aren't afraid of hot chilis. I have a cousin who can't tolerate cocktail sauce if you give it a couple shakes of Tabasco Sauce.

  73. Ardent Junglist
    Ardent Junglist
    Hace 3 días

    They always knew.

  74. Jeff Mullins
    Jeff Mullins
    Hace 3 días

    I don't understand why too many foods have become spicy. Spicy = pain . Who wants to give themselves pain?

  75. TheMrgoodmanners
    Hace 3 días

    and people say plants dont have brains

  76. Ethan
    Hace 3 días

    You know, at first it might seem as if the "getting high" explanation is totally unexpected, but if you think about it it makes perfect sense

  77. jensonee
    Hace 3 días

    more proof there is something seriously wrong with humans.

  78. Zoe C.
    Zoe C.
    Hace 3 días

    Humans, trying to find that high since forever.

  79. MultiTomcat67
    Hace 3 días

    "Capsicum makes your mouth feel like it's on fire". = evolutionary advantage But only those crazy, jumped-up monkeys love it. 🤯

  80. Jonathan
    Hace 3 días

    That explains why I was so CHILLed out after suffering from eating a ghost peper for 10 minutes.

  81. Stephen Beres
    Stephen Beres
    Hace 3 días

    That's why pepper spray is totally ineffective against birds ( and tree shrews). Not that I've gone out and pepper sprayed birds, of course And also, I get no Endorphin rush from spicy food. Just the burn without the pleasure. And ever since I lost my gallbladder, I get nausea and indigestion too. 😝 No spicy food for me. Speaking of endorphins, I've never experienced that "Runner's High". When I used to run, I hated every second of it. I stopped running. I couldn't imagine that some people enjoy running. I really want those endorphins that I seem to lack.

  82. Manuelito Tafoya
    Manuelito Tafoya
    Hace 3 días

    Awesome video. Thank you 😊

  83. alí cia
    alí cia
    Hace 3 días

    Yup the spicier my salsa is the longer it lasts in the fridge. Chiles are a gift to humanity my ancestors knew this❤️

  84. Lady Silverwynde
    Lady Silverwynde
    Hace 3 días

    Shout-out to the second proto-human to eat a chili pepper. Because whoever they were, they had to be convinced to swallow something that felt like burning death.

  85. G G
    G G
    Hace 3 días


  86. Alex Wittenberg
    Alex Wittenberg
    Hace 3 días

    I don’t find it the least bit pleasurable. Or that it’s harmless. It hurts and I am sure I am allergic.

  87. R Lendore
    R Lendore
    Hace 3 días

    Coffee plant: My Caffeine will ward off insects Humans: caffeine woop woop

  88. Joe K
    Joe K
    Hace 3 días

    I hate the burn lol. It just overpowers flavor in the dish

  89. Divine Snefer Bashiyr Douglas!!
    Divine Snefer Bashiyr Douglas!!
    Hace 3 días

    We are Global African Indigenous people!! Love and Unity is the best key for us all together!!💯 Also Giving thanks to the Great Mother's/Goddesses and Great Father's/Gods and the Ancestors and Guardians!! Saying from Snefer aka Bashiyr!!🤴🏿👸🏿

  90. Greco Cabanero
    Greco Cabanero
    Hace 3 días

    Why are there no pepper farms in brazil

  91. Exoboi
    Hace 3 días

    I actually prefer spice combined with flavor instead of pure spice. Anyone else agree.

  92. rma1980
    Hace 3 días

    Weird, at 0:54 the doesn't show any chili cultivation in Brazil. Here there are not only farms cultivating many varieties of chili, even people cultivates them in their own gardens.

  93. Walter L
    Walter L
    Hace 3 días

    It’s technically a bad feeling, but I like it... it’s weird...

  94. Thomas Hobbs-Allen
    Thomas Hobbs-Allen
    Hace 3 días

    I watched only one minute of it and I already love this video! Because it not only acknowledges the native Americans as the first in the Americas but it tells the story from their perspective! A rare thing!

  95. levmatta
    Hace 3 días

    Why Brazil is not in the cultivation map ??? How this happended ? LOL

  96. Eva Julia
    Eva Julia
    Hace 3 días

    "And Colombia"... and Venezuela right there with its three spots.

  97. mayoite160
    Hace 3 días

    would be interested to know about the history of peppers too...

  98. Fardeen Bora
    Fardeen Bora
    Hace 3 días

    Perhaps it's coz humans are the only known species to be degenerate enough to like BDSM👀

    Hace 3 días

    Try Culley’s Carolina Reaper Sauce. Wahoo!

    Hace 3 días

    Not just your mouth on fire. After 2 weeks of eating super hot raw sambal in Bali I had Bali bum. 🥵

      Hace 20 horas

      @troy krentzs not only ate tons of it, learned to make it in my Balinese cooking class. YUM!

    2. troy krentzs
      troy krentzs
      Hace 21 un hora

      I take it you ate sambal matah? 😂😂😂 Matah means raw.