I Got Jalapeño Burn!

Saturday morning went from being just another normal morning to a life lesson about jalapeños. I was today years old when I discovered something called Jalapeño burn. I’ve been an adult for at least 10 years now and have cooked dinner almost 65% of that time. It wasn’t until I was making breakfast on Saturday that I experienced this very common thing.

Omelets were on the menu for Kristen and I that morning. I chopped up onion, mushrooms, bell pepper and half a jalapeno. After breakfast was over we were watching TV when I rubbed my eye and it started to burn. I jumped up and began washing my eye and hands in the sink, not really sure what had happened. The burning didn’t go away for at least 10 minutes and that’s when my hand started to burn. For some reason the space between my first finger and second finger were on fire and no matter how many times I washed my hand it would not stop.

Confused I jumped on the internet and found out I was experiencing jalapeno burn. When you get a really spicy jalapeno, or any other pepper, some times you can get the Capsaicin (the stuff that makes it hot) on your skin. Capsaicin is not water soluble which means that water will do NOTHING to get it off of your skin. You need to use an oil instead like olive oil. The burn lasted for at least 45 minutes before I found this little nugget of information.

If this happens you are supposed to rub olive oil on the burn for about a minute so that it can break down the Capsaicin. After that you wash your hands and it should help give you some relief although it still doesn’t take it away. I’m not sure how often this happens but I’ve cut a few jalapenos in my life and this is a first for me. I can only be grateful that I didn’t touch Lilly before figuring out what was happening.

Nick Steele

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