10 Poisonous Foods We Like to Eat

10Potatoes Though it might be a worldwide staple, the potato is hiding a deadly secret

If stored improperly or exposed to too much sunlight, potatoes can develop high concentrations of the toxin Solanine Used as a natural defense, when consumed, solanine can paralyze the central nervous system and lead to respiratory failure During the Korean War, famine-struck North Koreans had no choice but to eat rotting potatoes One community saw 382 people affected by the blight, with 22 dying Many suffered heart failure within 24 hours of consumption

But don't worry too much, as it's fairly easy to spot solanine-plagued potatoes thanks to chlorophyll, which turns the skin green 09 Tuna Due to pollution in our waters, tuna is packed full of mercury which can travel to the brain and cause learning disabilities and neurological problems It’s incredibly toxic and if eaten during pregnancy mercury can pass through to the placenta, harming the development of the fetus’ nervous system It can also disrupt a child's development

Kids who eat a lot of tuna have been found to forget basic skills such as tying their shoelaces A high mercury diet can also cause visual and hearing problems, potentially leading to a complete loss of these senses And it's not just tuna that's a risky meal, as mercury passes along the food chain when bigger fish feed on tuna Large fish, such as swordfish, tend to have the highest mercury levels 08

Rhubarb The toxic leaves of the rhubarb plant contain oxalic acid, a toxic compound used in bleach Leading to a burning sensation in the mouth and throat, ingesting rhubarb leaves can cause breathing difficulties, kidney stones and seizures During World War One, British authorities recommended rhubarb leaves as a substitute for vegetables unavailable during the conflict, causing numerous cases of acute poisoning and even death But before you start avoiding the fruit, bear in mind you'd have to eat around 11 pounds of the leaves for it to prove fatal 07

Nutmeg Did you know that a staple spice of Christmas cooking contains a hallucinogenic? Well, thanks to the natural compound myristicin, which is found in nutmeg, the festive period could get a little spacier than expected Swallowing just 2 tablespoons will result in a major trip that can last several days It's so powerful that many prisons have banned it for fear that inmates will use it to get high Though many people, including Malcom X, jazz star Charlie Parker and author William Burroughs used the spice to get a cheap high, it can have some pretty nasty side-effects Aside from leaving a sense of agitation and apprehension, it also causes vomiting and diarrhea, and could even cause underlying heart defects to surface in those with previously unrecognized conditions

06 Almonds While almonds that grow on the sweet almond tree are a healthy snack, their counterparts that grow on the bitter almond tree pack a deadly punch Containing compounds which transform into cyanide on contact with enzymes in the intestines, eating 20 bitter almonds could prove fatal Amygdalin, which is found in the nut's oil, is used in Laetrile, an alternative cancer treatment that has been criticized by medics Banned in the USA, there is little evidence that this treatment works

In fact quite the opposite can happen, as eating a cyanide-containing food while receiving this treatment could prove deadly Other cyanide-containing foods to watch out for include cherry stones, apple pips, and carrots 05 Castor Seeds The cyanide in almonds is nothing when compared to the ricin found in castor seeds, which is 6,000 times more poisonous Putting this into a bit more of a perspective, that's 12,000 times more poisonous than rattlesnake venom

Described as the deadliest seed on earth, these seeds not only produce deadly poison, they also provide an oil which is extracted and regularly used in candy and chocolate Long before Walter White started spiking coffee, ricin was used in a sinister murder In 1979 a Belgian diplomat died after being stabbed with the tip of an umbrella laced with a pellet of the poison 04 Raw Honey Try eating just one tablespoon of honey in its raw state and you'll be left dizzy, nauseous and physically weak for 24 hours

This is mainly due to spores and pollens left behind by bees during production Even more worryingly, honey specifically taken from the rhododendron plant contains grayanotoxin, which can act as a hallucinogenic Known as ''Mad Honey' in 67 BC, it was used as a weapon of war When Romans invaded Turkey the locals lined their path with honeycomb When the hungry soldiers ate it they lost all their senses

Incredibly weak, many of them were easily slaughtered by the defending army 03 Ackee Despite being celebrated as the National Fruit of Jamaica, the Ackee could prove to be a deadly snack Symptoms that follow consumption of the fruit's large black pods or unripe flesh include: convulsions, comas and eventual death Even if you manage to survive, ackee poisoning will still result in intense abdominal cramps, severe diarrhea and vomiting

In 2011 over the course of just 3 months 194 people suffered from ackee poisoning and a further 23 people were killed by the poisonous fruit 02 Puffer Fish In order to serve this delicacy to the public, Japanese chefs must undergo years of study & an intense exam that a third of students fail Even so, since the year 2000 over 20 people have met a gruesome end after eating the fish This is down to Tetrodotoxin, a terrifying poison that lives in the kidneys and ovaries of the fish

If consumed it will paralyze parts of the body in turn, eventually freezing the heart and lungs And to make things worse, victims will remain fully conscious as their body slowly breaks down Packing a powerful punch, the amount of tetrodotoxin needed to kill an adult can fit on a pinhead In fact, the fish can be so deadly that it’s illegal for the Emperor of Japan to dine on it due to fears for his safety 01

Mushrooms Rumored to have caused the deaths of The Buddha, Emperor Claudius and Pope Clement VII, the consumption of poisonous mushrooms kills 2 to 3 people each year Scariest of all is the death cap mushroom, otherwise known as Amanita Phalloides, which closely resembles the edible field mushroom Containing up to 20 poisonous toxins, just half of one mushroom can prove fatal, killing up to 80% of those who eat one With no known antidote, symptoms may not appear for up to 24 hours after consumption, by which time the poison may have worked its way through the body, leading to organ failure, comas, and eventually death

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