This Was The Most Painful Man V. Food Challenge

Travel Channel's Man v. Food has become one of the finest TV specimens of happily indulgent eating. The various adventures and food challenges the show's original host Adam Richman and his successor Casey Webb have endured is enough to induce the meat sweats in all but the most casual viewers, even before you account for all the painfully inventive spicy challenges.

Knowing the show's capacity to allure and shock the viewer in equal amounts, it's hardly shocking that the challenges are sometimes pretty hard on the hosts. Many an episode shows Richman's facial expressions go from "affable partaker" to "victim of a heinous food-related crime" within a span of minutes. But which one out of all the vast mountains of food he had to consume over the course of his tenure as the show's host ranked as the most physically hurtful one? Let's take a look at what was arguably the most painful Man v. Food challenge.

The Hellfire Wings Challenge was a sticky, spicy hell for Adam Richman

Easily one of the worst Man Vs. Food challenges Richman had to endure was the Hellfire Wings Challenge at Smoke Eaters, San Jose, CA. The restaurant's website presents the challenge as something borderline insurmountable, playing up the "hellfire sauce" the challenge's 12 wings are slathered with, and the five minutes you have to feel the "afterburn" after chowing down the wings within the allotted time of 10 minutes. If anything, they're playing things down. The sauce contains over six ounces of dried habanero pepper and is so thick that it seems to stick to any surface – including your hands and face (via YouTube). There are no napkins, so wherever the sauce lingers, it goes on burning. Oh, and you'll have to lick your hands clean to complete the challenge. 

The spiciness, the rules, and the hellish five-minute waiting period conspired to make Richman dub the challenge "the worst physical pain I've ever encountered." Though he ultimately managed to come out on top, he ended up pacing the back lot of the restaurant in sheer agony. "Those last five minutes almost killed me," he admitted.

Curiously, Richman seems to have a pretty abysmal history with wings. In fact, one of his most infamous losses came when an allegedly sabotaged plate of super-hot wings at Munchies 4:20 Cafe in Sarasota, FLA, also nearly killed him. Wings might be delicious, but they're clearly a completely different ball game at this level.