January 27, 2023

Athens News

News in English from Greece

Did you know that? Poisonous foods on our table

Everyone has heard about the exotic poisonousness of puffer fish, but there are plenty of fans to tickle their nerves and get a dose of adrenaline to this day. But did you know that no less dangerous products are present on your table, and among the familiar and frequently used ones?

BB.LV talks about twelve of them, which carry a real threat to health, and sometimes life.

Raw cashew nuts (photo at the beginning of the article)

These nuts protect the body from the development of atherosclerosis, multiple sclerosis and abnormal blood formation. Cashews successfully fight cholesterol plaques, regulate the level of vascular lumen. The nutrients they contain help fight diabetes and cancer.

But they can also harm – burn and cause suffocation. The Indian walnut, the tree that produces cashew nuts, contains the allergic toxin urushiol, which also passes into the nuts. If this substance enters the human body, it causes a very painful rash on the skin. Why are they being sold? There is a trick here. “Raw cashews” in supermarkets are treated with hot steam, which kills the poisonous component. However, when buying nuts, choose only whole ones – shriveled or dried ones are no longer suitable for consumption.

Tomatoes and potatoes

The dangerous poison solanine is found in sprouted and green potato tubers, especially under the skin and in sprouts, and in unripe green tomatoes. When the latter begin to turn white or pink, that is, ripen, they can already be consumed without fear.

The action of solanine is manifested by a violation of digestion, depression of the nervous system after its short-term excitement, serious poisoning after eating a large amount of green tomatoes or potatoes in their skins. Symptoms include weakness, headache, confusion, vomiting, diarrhea, sometimes convulsions, and coma.

farmed salmon

This delicious fish can contain up to 13 different toxic substances! Research shows that farmed salmon has significantly higher levels than sea-dwelling fish.

The action of toxic substances is manifested in a decrease in immunity, damage to the kidneys and liver, skin rashes, and effects on the nervous system. Scientists warn that they can also provoke the development of cancer and lead to mutations, affecting the health of offspring.

All you need to know is that you can eat farmed salmon no more than twice a month, it’s safe. But if you do not want to take risks, it is better to switch to fish that has grown in its natural environment.

rhubarb leaves

Rhubarb is a plant that helps improve appetite and digestion, saturate the body with useful substances. Its leaves contain vitamins A, B, C, PP, pectin, carotene, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus. Rhubarb has general tonic and tonic properties, is a good choleretic and laxative. But … it also contains poison – oxalic acid. Symptoms of poisoning: nausea and diarrhea, burning in the mouth, shortness of breath, pain in the eyes, reddish urine. As a result of its impact on the human body, harmful crystalline deposits are formed in the kidneys.


Absinthe is an alcoholic drink containing approximately 70% alcohol. The most important component is an extract of bitter wormwood, the essential oils of which contain a large amount of thujone. However, absinthe itself contains only traces of this substance.

It is thujone, toxic to humans, that has a toxic effect, a large amount of which contains the essential oils of bitter wormwood. Manifestation of poisoning: distraction of attention, large doses of muscle cramps and a detrimental effect on the cells of the kidneys, liver, brain.

Interestingly, the appearance of hallucinations during thujone poisoning has not been proven, although some experts continue to claim this. Addiction to absinthe is more harmful because of the alcohol than the poison.


Elderberry stems, leaves, and seeds contain cyanide. When using unripe or improperly cooked berries, after a few minutes, symptoms of poisoning may appear – dizziness, drowsiness and headache, decreased pressure, nausea and diarrhea, shortness of breath and even convulsions.


Only those with perfectly healthy kidneys will be able to avoid the hassle of eating carambola, as they will filter out the neurotoxin contained in the tropical fruit. It can affect the nervous system and brain, causing hiccups and insomnia, weakness and numbness, vomiting and muscle cramps. For a person with diseased kidneys, it is enough to drink only 100 ml of carambola juice for this.

fruit stones

Most fruit pits – peach, cherry, apricot and cherry – contain hydrocyanic acid. It causes oxygen starvation of tissues, disrupts the functions of the central nervous system. Symptoms of acute poisoning: shortness of breath, rapid breathing, increased pressure and slow heart rate. True, all these symptoms will appear after you eat at least a couple of glasses of nucleoli.


It is not recommended to use nutmeg in large doses. Otherwise, you may see unattractive hallucinations, palpitations, and signs of epilepsy. Poisoning by the myristicin contained in it, a psychotropic substance, leads to a decrease in the ability of brain cells to transmit nerve signals. Already after 5-6 grams, symptoms may appear “in all their glory”, including memory loss, dry mouth, excessive excitement, redness of the eyes, dizziness. And eating a whole nut can cause psychosis.

Unpasteurized honey

The flower nectar of heather plants contains a poison called andromedotoxin. First, it excites the nervous system, then it depresses, and in the end, everything can end … with a fatal outcome. Signs of poisoning: nausea, vomiting, excessive sweating, weakness, dizziness. The severity of symptoms depends on the amount of honey eaten. As a rule, if the amount was moderate, then all unpleasant manifestations disappear in a day. So do not eat honey with tablespoons, and everything will be fine.


The ability of this fish, as well as other types of fish and shellfish, to accumulate mercury in the body can cause unpleasant consequences of its use. A hazardous chemical affects the liver, kidneys, gastrointestinal tract, and nervous system. Mercury is especially dangerous for children, so nursing mothers and pregnant women should stop eating tuna.

It should be noted that no treatment, including heat, is capable of destroying mercury. It is no coincidence that in countries where fishing is widely developed – in China, Brazil, Canada and others – about 17 children out of a thousand suffer from dementia.

Microwave popcorn

Basically, the danger in this case lies in wait for manufacturers, but you can get poisoned at home. The poison diacetyl is found in the flavorings that give popcorn its buttery flavor. Under the influence of microwaves, toxic fumes are released that disrupt the functioning of the lungs. The truth is, it doesn’t happen often. At least 1 case is known of a man who developed a serious lung problem, but he made popcorn twice a day for ten years!

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