Although amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) was first found in 1869, it didn't start getting international attention until 1939, when beloved baseball star Lou Gehrig was diagnosed with the disease. The degenerative disease forces the motor neurons in your brain to deteriorate, which eventually leads to paralysis and death.
However, the hype surrounding the incurable disease slowly dwindled down until cosmologist Stephen Hawking announced that he was suffering from it in 1963. However, at the time, nobody could've predicted that over five decades later, ALS would be one of the most talked about conditions in the world.
In the summer of 2014, three young men with ALS enlisted the help of the world to raise awareness and funds for the devastating condition by dumping buckets of ice water on their heads.
The campaign soon became widespread, and inspired both regular people and celebrities to take on the challenge and make donations to the ALS Association. As a result, $115 million was raised to advance the research for the cause and cure of the disease, and for the first time in 22 years, the FDA approved a new treatment drug.
Now, to ensure that the conversation surrounding ALS doesn't cease, ESPN anchor Tom Haberstroh has introduced a new challenge that may be even more grueling that dumping ice water on your head. The host was inspired to create the ALS Pepper Challenge after his mother, Patty, was diagnosed with the disease.
The challenge has been underway for a few weeks now, and lots of celebrities are partaking in the spicy dare. More recently, country singer Trisha Yearwood and her husband, Garth Brooks, took the challenge then asked Kelly Clarkson to do the same. As you can imagine, it went as well as you'd expect eating one of the world's spiciest peppers would go.
Yearwood and Brooks showed their support for ALS when they took on the Hot Pepper Challenge a couple of days ago, and then asked their fellow celebrities, including Ellen DeGeneres, Jimmy Kimmel, Jeff Mauro, and Kelly Clarkson, to follow suit.
Clarkson, 35, was one of the first to respond to the dare by taking a bite out of a Habanero pepper, and then uploaded her reaction on Instagram for the world to see.
The American Idol winner joked that she "cannot stand" Yearwood for asking her to take on the challenge.
"I just want to say, first of all, I cannot stand you, Trisha Yearwood, because I was in the clear, Garth didn’t even say my name and then you just brought it out of nowhere!" Clarkson said.
She continued, "I’d also like to say, for the ALS Pepper Challenge, this is love because I’ve actually never had habanero [peppers]. Trisha picked the habanero because she’s, like, bold, and I don’t want to look like a wimp. I’m going to cry, probably."
Clarkson then took a tiny bite out of the pepper, and hilarity insued.
"My tongue is on fire!" the singer cried. "My actual tooth hurts… is that my molar?"
The mom-of-two then reached for some milk to soothe the burn, but that didn't seem to help a whole lot. "Oh my gosh! I’m not being dramatic, my eyes are crying. This is mean. I can’t stand you, Trisha Yearwood,” Clarkson said. "Jesus, take the wheel, oh my God. I just need an ice cube, one second. This is cruel."
Thankfully, the ice was much more effective and The Voice judge was able to wrap up the video by asking her fellow judges and her husband to attempt the challenge.
"I want to challenge Blake Shelton, Adam Levine, Alicia Keys. This is gonna suck!” She added, "And Brandon Blackstock, my husband. You’re welcome!"
We can't wait to see more celebrities hilariously eat a hot pepper on camera for a great cause.
Would you eat a hot pepper for ALS? Let us know in the comments!