- The Apricot seed is used to produce oil and other chemicals used for medicinal purposes.
- It is known for containing amygdalin, a compound which, together with the similar compound laetrile, has been marketed as a cancer treatment with some clinical evidence for its efficacy.
- Seeds or kernels of the apricot grown in central Asia and around the Mediterranean are so sweet that they may be substituted for almonds. The Italian liqueur amaretto and amaretti biscotti are flavored with extract of apricot kernels as well as almonds. Oil pressed from these cultivars has been used as cooking oil.
- Apricot kernels can sometimes be strong-tasting and bitter. They feature in recipes for apricot jam, and Italian amaretto cookies and liqueur.
- Despite serious safety concerns, apricot kernel is used for treating cancer. It is taken by mouth or given as an injection.
- Apricot kernel contains a toxic chemical known as amygdalin. In the body this chemical is converted to cyanide, which is poisonous. There was interest in using apricot kernel to fight cancer because it was thought that amygdalin was taken up first by cancer cells and converted to cyanide
Taken in excess, they may produce symptoms of cyanide poisoning, including nausea, fever, rash, headaches, insomnia, increased thirst, weakness, lethargy,nervousness, various aches and pains in joints and muscles, and a drop in blood pressure.
Special Precautions & Warnings:
Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Apricot kernel is LIKELY UNSAFE for pregnant and breast-feeding women when taken by mouth.
None are recorded.
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