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  • Over on our sister channel, BBC Earth Lab, we've delved into why it is that some foods can be super spicy.

    在我們的姐妹頻道 BBC Earth Lab 中,我們深入探討了,為什麼有些食物可能是超辣的。

  • The answer lies in a tiny molecule, called capsaicin, that naturally occurs in chilli peppers,


  • and which has the ability to trigger an intense burning sensation.


  • For how that works, you'll have to watch Greg's video, but I'm really interested in why some plants go to the effort of making such a sadistic chemical.

    至於它是如何產生的,你要看 Greg 的視頻才會知道,但我真的很感興趣,為什麼一些植物會努力製造這種整人的化學物質。

  • You see, chilli peppers are a type of fleshy fruit that plants develop after being fertilisedjust like apples, bananas, and raspberries.

    是這樣的,辣椒是一種植物受精後發育出的肉質果實 - 就像蘋果,香蕉和覆盆子一樣。

  • The point of these fruits is to be enticing to passing animals, in the hope that they'll spot them,


  • chow down on them, and then travel far away before the resistant seeds find their way back out through their poo.


  • With any luck, the seeds will survive and germinate in their new home, far away from


  • the mother plant, giving them more than an even chance to survive and thrive.


  • And chilli peppers are no exception to the eat-travel-poop method of seed dispersal.

    辣椒也不例外,藉著被動物「吞食 - 移動 - 排泄」的方式,將種子散播出去。

  • The bright reds, yellows and oranges of the ripe fruit are just what's needed to attract passing creatures.


  • But they hide a vicious secret. Most fruits of the Capsicum genusthat's chilli

    但這中間隱藏著一個邪惡的秘密。 那就是大多數辣椒屬植物的果實 - 對你我而言

  • peppers to you and me - contain the burn-inducing chemical capsaicin, lying in wait for unsuspecting snackers.

    就是辣椒 - 都含有引發燒灼感的辣椒素,正等待著毫無戒心的吃客上門。

  • What benefit can there be to advertising sugar but only delivering spice?


  • You might think that it's because other animals don't feel the same burn we do when they munch on a scotch bonnet.


  • But researchers have found that both mammals and insects also experience the heat of capsaicin


  • when it comes into contact with the insides of their mouths or even with their skin, making


  • them avoid the deceptive fruits of the Capsicum genus.


  • Which is lucky, because it's these animals that have the ability to throw a spanner in the works of the seed dispersal plan.


  • Even though the seeds, like bits of sweetcorn, are able to survive the journey through an


  • animal's gut, the small mammals that eat the chilli fruits do so by grinding the tough


  • bits with their teeth, damaging the seeds so that when they pop out the other end, they won't germinate.


  • Likewise, insects feed on chilli peppers by puncturing the flesh and sucking out the juice


  • but these puncture wounds are perfect breeding grounds for fungi that can also damage

    - 但是這些被刺破的傷口,卻成為真菌滋生的理想場所,而真菌會破壞種子

  • the seeds, and the plant's hopes of reproducing.


  • So with spicy capsaicin deterring these dangerous munchers, the seeds have a decent chance of surviving to germinate.


  • But how do they get dispersed?


  • Well, there is one group of animals that capsaicin doesn't affectand that's birds.

    嗯,有一種動物不會被辣椒素所影響 - 那就是鳥類。

  • With a different configuration of nerves, the birds take no notice of even scorchingly


  • high concentrations of spice, and gobble chilli peppers down like a kid with sweets. And the


  • crucial thing is that they don't chew or grind themthe seeds go straight in, and

    重要的是,他們不會咀嚼或磨碎種子 - 種子被直接吞進去

  • come straight back out again, hopefully after a nice long flight.


  • So by using a simple chemical to drive away the grinders, and attract the gobblers, Capsicum

    因此,通過使用一種簡單的化學物質 (辣椒素) 來驅走咀嚼者並吸引吞食者者

  • plants get only the best dispersers, making sure none of their precious reproductive resources are wasted.


  • But this does raise another questionif capsaicin is so good at ensuring successful

    但這引發了另一個疑問 - 如果辣椒素對於確保種子傳播這麼有用

  • seed dispersal, why don't all fruiting plants produce it?


  • The answer, is that chilli spice isn't such a simple chemical after all, and it takes


  • a lot of the plant's precious nutritional resourceslike nitrogento produce it.

    它需要植物大量的珍貴養分 - 如氮素 - 來製造它。

  • The Capsicum plants took a big risk when they put their eggs in the chemistry basket, as


  • they're relying on an uninterrupted supply of water and nutrients to even start to make the manipulative chilli pepper.


  • And when there's a dry spell, it's the chillies that suffer, while the traditionalists come out on top.


  • But the chilli's peculiar evolutionary gamble has paid off in more ways than one. Since


  • their discovery by native American human populations thousands of years ago, who found they could


  • provide just the zing their cuisine needed, the plants have been nurtured and cultured and selectively bred to suite every palate.


  • As a result, they've spread further than even a bird could carry them. Even here, to the Alnwick Garden in Northumberland!

    因此,它們散播之廣,遠遠超過了鳥類能夠傳播的範圍。甚至到了這裡,(英國) 諾森伯蘭郡的阿尼克花園!

  • So, that's the secret to spicy plants.


  • Click here to check out the Earth Lab video on how they tingle our tastebuds,

    請點擊這裡觀看 Earth Lab 的視頻,了解它們如何刺激我們的味蕾

  • and don't forget to like and subscribe for more fascinating nature videos.


Over on our sister channel, BBC Earth Lab, we've delved into why it is that some foods can be super spicy.

在我們的姐妹頻道 BBC Earth Lab 中,我們深入探討了,為什麼有些食物可能是超辣的。


影片操作 你可以在這邊進行「影片」的調整,以及「字幕」的顯示

B2 中高級 中文 英國腔 辣椒 種子 辣椒素 植物 動物 果實

為什麼辣椒很辣?| 大地無疆 (Why Are Chillies Spicy? | Earth Unplugged)

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    Amy.Lin 發佈於 2021 年 01 月 14 日