I had a curious reaction to some spicy tomato sauce last night at a restaurant. Ordered a plain salad and they were nice enough to whip up some tomatoey "dressing" on the side for me....except it was spicey. Not terribly spicy, but definitely noticeable. In the past, I've eaten plenty of spicier dishes with no obvious reactions.
Anyway, I ate about a tablespoon's amount in total of the sauce with the salad and within 5 minutes of tasting it, my ears began to grow very warm and red/swollen. Then the part of my neck just around my ears started itching uncontrollably and I began to break out in hives which proceeded to spread down the back of my neck, to my chest, shoulders, stomach arms etc, over the course of the following 4-5 hours. It was FREAKY. I felt fine otherwise...just very itchy and hot but boy, did it spook me.
So for any of you wondering if what they say about spices and certain herbs (that they're irritants to the body) is true....IT'S TRUE!!!!