Did Flamin' Hot Cheetos really send Lil Xan to the hospital?
Rapper Lil Xan made headlines in September 2018 when he claimed he spent a night in the hospital due to an overdose of Flamin' Hot Cheetos. In a now-deleted Instagram video, he detailed his unusual medical issue (and a quick warning, this gets a little gross).
"I was in the hospital, not doing any drugs, but I guess I ate, uh, too many Hot Cheetos and it ... ripped something in my stomach open, so I puked a little blood," he said. "We good.”
Of course, many internet commenters immediately wondered whether the rapper was telling the truth—and, because medical records are private, we probably won’t ever know for sure.
Still, Flamin' Hot Cheetos have been cited in other medical incidents recently. A report from CBS noted that people who eat too many Cheetos can experience severe stomach pain (although that’s also true for any other spicy snack). Flamin' Hot Cheetos also use food colorings that can resemble blood when they’re, ahem, ejected from the body, so Lil Xan’s symptoms might have been less serious than he’d indicated.
Several schools in Illinois, New Mexico, and California have banned Flamin' Hot Cheetos from their campuses, although there’s not enough information to say whether or not the snacks are truly dangerous. One thing’s for sure: If you’re snacking on any prepackaged food, your best bet is to pace yourself.
"A number of patients who have consumed these Cheetos in excess have complained of pain in their upper abdomen, rising up into their chest, likely due to the red peppers and spice contained in the snack," emergency medicine physician Robert Glatter told CBSNews.com.
"We do see tons of gastritis and ulcer-related stuff due to [spicy snacks]," gastroenterologist Cary Cavender told CBS in a separate report. "We probably see around 100 kids a month, easily."
In July 2018, one parent blamed snacks like Flamin' Hot Cheetos and Takis for her daughter’s gallbladder problems, which were so severe it had to be removed. However, the teenager was eating enormous amounts of the junk foods—and per CBS, medical professionals haven’t found a definitive link between gallbladder issues and specific foods.
Lil Xan ended his post by telling his fans to “be careful" with Cheetos. It’s good advice—but if you’re eating spicy foods in moderation, you probably don’t have anything to worry about.
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