The Chili sensation is similar to heat
Humans evolved to like hot food and the Chili sensation they get when they eat spicy food gives them a feeling similar to eating hot food.
The system of pleasure and pain works together
It was found that Spicy food triggers the pleasure center in the brain along with the pain center were activated. Some people find those feelings to be pleasant.
To sense danger without risk
It’s believed that Spicy food gives people the thrill of facing danger without actually being at risk. It’s similar to watching a horror movie where the person enjoyed the danger because he knows that he is safe.
People like the relief they get when the pain ends
In another theory it’s suggested that people like spicy food because they like the feelings of relief they get when the food ends.
Spicy food sends pain signals to the brain and this forces the brain to release Endorphins, the brain’s pain killers. Endorphins are known for their addictive effects and this might be the reason some people find spicy food addictive. (See Video Summary: What’s wrong with our food system by Birke Baehr | TEDxNextGenerationAsheville)
They are action seekers
In one study it was found that thrill seekers and people who like adventures are 6 times more likely to like spicy food
Men unconsciously feel strong
Because men are always pressured to man up and withstand pain some men get an unconscious self esteem boost when they eat spicy food because it makes them feel like they are men enough. (See How to make healthy eating unbelievably easy by Luke Durward)
They are sensation and novelty Food
Another study found a connection between sensation seeking , novelty seeking and love for Chili food. The study found that those people enjoyed the feelings of burn more than others
To help them survive
Spicy food can help protect the person from microbes and parasites. It’s believed that people who eat more spicy food have a higher chance of survival. This belief might have led some people to like spicy foods.
Spicy food stimulates the appetite
Hot weather negatively impacts the appetite while spicy food stimulates it. This could be one reason why people in hot countries like spicy food
They aren’t very sensitive to heat
In one study it was shown that people who enjoyed the burning sensation or hate more tolerance to heat are more likely to like spicy food. This might also be the reason why people in hot countries like spicy food (since they are more tolerant to heat).
They are risk takers
In one study carried out at Pennsylvania state university it was found that people who are more open to risk are more likely to consume spicy food than people who prefer to play it safe.
Some people believe that cultural influences can let some people like certain foods. According to this theory the positive interactions that occur during meal time make people like the foods shared by the family. This could be the reason why people in some countries like India like spicy food.
Increased exposure can lead to liking spicy food
In one study it was found that as people got more exposed to spicy food the the burn intensity decreased thus the food became more enjoyable. This is another explanation why people in countries like Mexico might like spicy food.
Why do people like spicy food?
Why Do People Like Spicy Food and Others Don’t? A pleasure to burn: Why do people like spicy foods?