How it affects you: Whether we’re talking hot curry or spicy Buffalo chicken wings, foods that give your taste buds a run for their money can also trigger heartburn, particularly if you eat them close to bedtime.
What you can do: "Cooling foods, specifically dairy, can help to calm the burn associated with spicy food in some people," says Palinski-Wade. "Since milk itself can be hard on digestion, reach instead for high-quality dairy rich in protein, like cottage cheese or a Greek yogurt that contains GI-friendly probiotics to aid digestion."
I've always heard of people drinking milk after and while eating spicy foods but never knew why.
How does it work: The spices in most of the hot foods that we eat are oily, and, like your elementary school science teacher taught you, oil and water don't mix. In this case, the water just rolls over the oily spices. A chemical called capsaicin in the peppers binds to your taste buds and feels like they are burning the heck out of your mouth. Water may feel like it is diluting it but only momentarily, and sugary juices make it worse by opening up your taste buds and allowing more capsaicin in. Milk products, on the other hand, binds to capsaicin more tightly than capsaicin binds to your taste buds. When you drink the milk or eat a dairy product the capsaicin is attached and goes down with it.