A 14-year-old’s family is raising awareness about the potentially deadly ‘spicy chip’ challenge after their son’s passing.
Harris Wolobah’s mother picked him up from the school’s nurse’s office because he had passed out after eating the Paqui spicy chip.
After returning home, the teenager lost consciousness again and was transported to the emergency room, where he ultimately passed away.
While the family is still waiting for the official cause of death for their son, the family is confident that the chip played a significant role in his death. Wolobah was described as a healthy teen with “no pre-existing condition,” according to his father.
Since the One Chip Challenge was introduced in 2016, it has gained a great deal of popularity over the years. As part of the challenge, people are encouraged to consume the Paqui Carolina Reaper + Naga Viper Pepper Chip and try to avoid eating or drinking anything for a certain period of time afterward.
There is a hashtag #OneChipChallenge that has been set up to help people share their reactions. Despite the fact that Paqui has yet to make an official statement about Wolobah’s death, their website has been updated with warnings about the chip that they are placing front and center.
Some of the warnings include “Do not eat if you are sensitive to spicy foods, allergic to peppers, night shades or capsaicin, or are pregnant or have any medical conditions” along with “intended for adult consumption.”
These same warnings are also listed on the package of the chip. According to the National Capital Poison Center, the ingredient capsaicin can cause “serious health problems including heart attack and esophageal damage.”
Due to the extreme effects this challenge can have on children, it is strongly recommended that they do not participate in this challenge. Registered dietitian Shelby Pena explains that even though this challenge might not be life-threatening to adults, for children it can