A concerning TikTok trend suggesting that cyanide can prevent acne and acne scars has been flagged by Dr. Neel Patel, an online doctor associated with Lloyds Pharmacy.
The trend gained significant attention on the social media platform, amassing over 440,000 views.
In the video, a woman claims that her clear skin is a result of consuming apricot kernels during her childhood.
While she advises viewers against trying the unusual acne treatment, Dr. Patel expresses his worry about the potential dangers involved.
Dr. Patel explains that apricot kernels contain a compound called amygdalin, which converts into cyanide when ingested.
Cyanide is a highly toxic substance found in the seeds, stones, and pips of certain fruits like apples, apricots, and red cherries.
When consumed, cyanide interferes with the body’s ability to use oxygen and can act as a rapidly acting, potentially deadly poison.
Although most foods containing cyanide do so in negligible amounts and pose little risk, apricot kernels warrant special attention.
Extracted from the apricot stone, these kernels have been identified by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) as a cyanide poisoning risk.
Consuming more than three kernels in one sitting exceeds the recommended safe level, and the TikTok user claimed to consume at least five daily, nearly double the safe amount.
Dr. Patel emphasizes the serious risks involved and strongly advises against attempting to increase cyanide consumption, as it could lead to severe health consequences.
Symptoms of cyanide poisoning to watch out for include chest pain, tightness, confusion, dizziness, eye pain, tearing, excitement, difficulty breathing, headache, nausea, rapid or slow heart rate, rapid or slow breathing, restlessness, shortness of breath, vomiting, weakness, and wheezing.
He further urges anyone who suspects cyanide poisoning, either in themselves or someone else, to seek immediate medical attention.
The potential dangers associated with this TikTok trend highlight the importance of consulting medical professionals and avoiding reckless experimentation with potentially harmful substances.