A 67-year-old Australian man ended up poisoned with cyanide after taking homemade extract of apricot kernels. This happened after this food was promoted as a healthy and miraculous way to prevent cancer. However, many people avoid the risks they put themselves to if they consume too much of it.
What happens if you eat too many apricot kernels?
Apricot kernels can be obtained by splitting apricot stones and taking out their contents. This product contains amygdalin, which gets converted into cyanide after it is ingested. Therefore, if you consume too many apricot kernels, you are in danger of developing cyanide poisoning.
The symptoms of cyanide poisoning include headaches, fever, nausea, lethargy, nervousness, insomnia, extreme thirst. Also, your muscles and joints start hurting, and your blood pressure drops. In the end, if the cyanide ingestion is too high, it might turn deadly.
Apricot kernels have been promoted as the newest superfood
The case of the Australian man was summed up in BMJ Case Reports. Doctors discovered something was wrong as they were performing a routine surgery on the man. During the procedure, they suddenly observed the man had unusually low oxygen levels in his body. After more tests, they found out he had suffered cyanide poisoning.
After the surgery was over, doctors found the man had been taking a homemade extract of apricot kernels every day for five years. In addition to this, he had also taken three Novodalin tablets a day. These tablets are herbal supplements containing extract of apricot kernels.
Both the homemade extract and the tablets led to the man taking 17.32 mg of cyanide per day. This is extremely worrying, as it increases the cyanide in the body 25 times the acceptable levels. Although the doctors told the man how dangerous such a diet is, he wouldn’t agree on giving it up.
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