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Heath Canada Warns of Cyanide Poisoning In Food That People Self Administer to Treat Cancer

Jen Slack's picture
Cyanide poisoning in food

Food is extremely powerful. Every time you eat, you have two choices: to nurture your body or harm it. I don't know why so many in today's society seem so oblivious to this fact, mindlessly consuming whatever they please, as though what they are consuming will have no effect on their body.


And while the nutrients found in food can not just sustain us, but keep us healthy, on the other hand, too much of a good thing can also be very harmful.

Case in point, is a new warning from Heath Canada, a branch of the Canadian government responsible for health, that states that apricot kernels can cause cyanide poisoning, stating that those who consume apricot kernels should limit their intake to three per day.

There are two types of apricot kernels - bitter and sweet. The bitter type, marketed as a source of B17 contain amygdalin, (also called laetrile) can be converted to cyanide after it is eaten.

Symptoms of cyanide poisoning include weakness, confusion and shortness of breath due to lowered oxygen levels.

Most people who eat apricots throw out the kernels, or seeds, found in the center. Others, however, view them as a healthy food and are sold at health food store, online and also at Asian grocery stores.

Lost in Translation

One of the problems that Health Canada wants to crack down on is one of a translation problem in regards to the seeds. Canada, a country that recognizes both French and English as official languages, requires both languages on food labels. The fact that apricot kernels look like almonds,combined with the fact that the french word for kernel is "amande" might be a problem, according to the agency. There is a concern that people who think they may be consuming almonds, may be consuming too many apricot seeds, resulting in cyanide poisoning.

Cyanide in foods

Besides in apricot kernels, cynanide, in small amounts, can also be found in other healthy foods such as bitter almonds, sweet potatoes, millet, sprouts, lima beans, spinach, bamboo shoots, and even apple seeds.

Cure For Cancer, Some Claim

On The Truth About Cancer's website, Dr. Veronique Desaulniers, says this about laetrile, found in apricot seeds, and banned in the U.S., " In the mid-70s, investigative journalist G. Edward Griffin did in-depth research into the circumstances surrounding around the FDA ban. What he discovered was shocking. He uncovered documents buried by Sloane-Kettering Cancer Institute which proved that laetrile was “highly effective” against cancer".

The Patient Who Overdosed To Prevent His Cancer From Returning

A 67 year old Australian man had been taking two teaspoons of homemade apricot kernel extract and three tablets of Novodalin daily in efforts to prevent his prostrate cancer from returning. While under anesthesia for a routine surgery, doctors noticed his extremely low oxygen levels and realized that the cyanide levels in his blood were 25 times lower than the accepted level.

Co Author of the study, Alex Konstantatos wrote this in an email to The Verge, "Cyanide is toxic to cells because it interferes with their oxygen supply; it is particularly bad for the brain and heart, which require constant oxygen to function. People who believe in the power of apricot kernels think that this cyanide is only toxic to cancer cells, but scientists say that’s not true. It is likely to kill all cells of the body equally.”

The man, who was described as friendly and inquisitive, gladly participated with the doctors in answering their questions, and once informed of the potential dangers, decided he would continue with his daily self-prescribed dosages.

Whether or not the apricot kernels can cure cancer or not, is a hotly debated topic. And while chemotherapy is widely accepted as a treatment, it seems doctors themselves would refuse it for themselves.

Most Doctors Surveyed Would Refuse Chemotherapy

According to a Stanford Study of more than 1,000 doctors, including oncologists, 75 percent said that, if diagnosed with cancer, they would refuse treatment, even though 75 percent of them also suggest chemotherapy as a treatment to patients.

Those Teating Cancer With Foods Is Becoming More Common

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When I first heard the notion that foods and natural supplements could cure cancer, my first reaction was negative. However, it did begin to make sense to me, personally. After all, from various scientific studies, it has been demonstrated that various types of healthy foods can prevent cancer, so why not cure it too?

One thing that is certain - healthy, natural foods can be powerful.

If you've ever been to the Caribbean and indulged in multitudes of fresh fruit or drinks with fresh coconut milk, you will have experience too much of a good thing, especially if your system is not used to it.

Too much of a good thing

Although the foods listed below pack a punch when it comes to nutrition, too much of a good thing can lead to various problems.


The perfect addition to a morning smoothie, but too many can cause headaches and sleepiness, due to the amino acids. If you really overindulged, you could also get trigger a very dangerous condition, hyperkalemia, from too much potassium in the blood.


Bursting with the antioxidant beta carotene, carrots are wonderful snacks and additions to so many dishes. However, too many can cause your skin to turn orange. A friend told me that his aunt, who he believes successfully treated her own cancer, ate massive amounts of carrots. Her skin was indeed orange, however, her cancer never returned.


Some cannot seem to get through the day without their coffee, but too much can lead to insomnia, restlessness, nausea, irregular heartbeat, muscle terrors, anxiety and headaches.

Star Fruit

Starfruit, rich in antioxidants, Vitamin C, B Complex vitamins and more, this fruit has been reported as the cause of acute kidney failure in people with kidney disease. Other symptoms of overdose include hiccups in a mild case, and in more severe cases it can cause vomiting, weakness, insomnia, altered consciousness, convulsions and hypotension.


We are told to drink our water, however too much dilutes the sodium in our blood and can cause an electrolyte imbalance, which can be extremely harmful and in some cases, even deadly.


'Tis the season of eggnog dusted with eggnog. In small quantities, nutmeg is good for our skin, cognitive function and more, however, too much and you might start seeing Santa and his reindeer flying through the sky. Nutmeg in excess can a hallucinogenic drug. Even more serious, it can include psychotic episodes.

Click here for an "Eggless" eggnog version.

Have you ever experienced an overdose or bad reaction from consuming too much of an otherwise healthy food?

Are you surprised by the study that revealed that most doctors would refuse chemo?

Positive or negative, please share your comments, or feel free to ask questions in the comments section below.