But if you chew the seeds, human (or animal) enzymes come in contact with the amygdalin, cutting off the sugar part of the molecule, The Guardian reported. But one viral claim suggests that eating too many apples might send you to the doctor – or worse, the morgue. Start the day smarter. He died just prior to turning 100,” another wrote. Plus, the human body can process hydrogen cyanide in small doses, so eating a few seeds is not dangerous. Amygdalin exists in relatively high amounts in the seeds of fruits in the Rosaceae family, which includes apples, almonds, apricots, peaches, and cherries. Last modified on Wed 22 Feb 2017 18.03 GMT. A fatal dose for humans can be as low as 1.5 milligrams per kilogram of body weight. An apple a day may keep the doctor... Apple seeds do contain cyanide, but not enough to kill. Apples contain a compound called amygdalin in their seeds, which is a cyanide-and-sugar based molecule. An apple a day may keep the doctor away. There are ways to turn things around, experts say, Stop refrigerating these 4 fruits and vegetables. Microsoft may earn an Affiliate Commission if you purchase something through recommended links in this article. In humans, cyanide toxicity is experienced at doses of around 0.5-3.5 milligrams per kilogram of body weight, The Guardian reported. But one would have to consume between 150 and several thousand apple seeds — and they would need to be crushed — to cause cyanide poisoning, and possibly death. 8 things you need for cooking apples this fall, Drinking water while eating does not lead to digestive issues. “Eating 20 apple cores will kill an adult, while eating less can result in paralysis, coma and brain damage.”. “I always eat my apples with the seeds, nothing has ever happened to me. The average apple usually contains between five to eight seeds. The seeds, pips and stones of many varieties of fruit contain small amounts of cyanide, so here’s your handy guide on the pips not to eat, Sun 11 Oct 2015 08.00 BST This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Fact check: Apple seeds do contain cyanide, but not enough to kill, Like us on Facebook to see similar stories, US Coronavirus: Nearly 60,000 Americans could die of Covid-19 in the next three weeks. subscribe to our print edition, ad-free app or electronic newspaper replica here. © 2020 Guardian News & Media Limited or its affiliated companies. Thank you for supporting our journalism. Fact check: Apple seeds do contain cyanide, but not enough to kill. What’s left of the compound can then decompose, producing hydrogen cyanide. “Apple seeds contain cyanide,” a post by Facebook page “Facts that will blow your mind” reads. Apple seeds contain a cyanide- and sugar-based compound called amygdalin. “I had a cousin, an old country doctor, who recommended eating an apple day, including the core and the seeds. It’s true that apple seeds contain cyanide in the form of the compound amygdalin. If the seed is chewed or otherwise broken, human or animal enzymes come into contact with the amygdalin and effectively cut off the sugar part of the molecule. In fact, it would take "anywhere from 150 to several thousand crushed seeds" to cause cyanide poisoning, according to Britannica. As not all of this mass would be converted into hydrogen cyanide (some of it will constitute the sugar part of the molecules that is cleaved off), it’s apparent that you’re going to need to eat a huge number of apple seeds to succeed in poisoning yourself, and there don’t appear to be any cases of someone having succeeded in doing so. You can subscribe to our print edition, ad-free app or electronic newspaper replica here. Cyanide itself is a rapidly acting, potentially deadly chemical that kills by preventing cells in the body from using oxygen, according to the CDC. You’re highly unlikely to manage to eat enough apple seeds to poison yourself, so you can rest easy if you occasionally swallow one. All rights reserved. The claim that apple seeds contain cyanide and eating 20 apple cores will kill an adult is MISSING CONTEXT, because key information was missing from the post. Cyanide in fruit seeds: how dangerous is an apple? Exposure to a large amount can lead to symptoms including convulsions, slow heart rate and respiratory failure leading to death, and exposure to a small amount might cause dizziness, nausea and weakness, among other things, the CDC says. The seeds have a strong outer layer that is resistant to digestive juices. In a recent study, the amygdalin content of apple seeds was found to be approximately 3 milligrams per gram of seeds (one seed is approximately 0.7g). The Facebook page “Facts that will blow your mind” did not respond to USA TODAY’s request for comment. Cyanide toxicity is experienced by humans at doses of around 0.5–3.5 milligrams per kilogram of body weight. Apple seeds contain approximately 1-4 milligrams of amygdalin, a 2014 study found, but not all of that translates into cyanide. I used to eat close to 5 apples a day...” one commenter wrote. Fact check: Apple seeds do contain cyanide, but not enough to kill The claim: Apple seeds contain cyanide, and eating 20 apple cores will kill an adult. Some of the problems associated with high consumption of apple seeds cyanide: You may be victimized to several disorders Get a paralysis attack Experience memory loss Suffer from a heart failure. More: 8 things you need for cooking apples this fall. Fact check: Drinking water while eating does not lead to digestive issues. The post was shared more than 5,000 times, though commenters were quick to question the post’s veracity. Apples contain a compound called amygdalin in their seeds, which is a cyanide-and-sugar based molecule. Available for everyone, funded by readers. 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If the seed is chewed or otherwise broken, human or … Our fact check work is supported in part by a grant from Facebook. The chemical is a favorite silent killer of mystery novelists like Agatha Christie, but has also been used egregiously in real life, perhaps most infamously as the gas in Holocaust gas chambers. Get all the news you need in your inbox each morning. Symptoms of cyanide poisoning include stomach cramps, headache, nausea and vomiting, and can culminate in cardiac arrest, respiratory failure, coma and death. The remainder can then decompose to produce the poisonous gas hydrogen cyanide. The fatal dose: Poison in Agatha Christie’s works, Zyklon B, a Poison Used During the Holocaust, Determination of amygdalin in apple seeds, fresh apples and processed apple juices. Show full articles without "Continue Reading" button for {0} hours.