23rd April 2024

Cyanide is a lethal chemical found in minute amounts in seeds of some fruits such as apple, cherry and peach. The seeds of these fruits contain a compound called amygdalin, which is a sugar and cyanide based compound. When amygdalin enters a human or animal body, the sugar part of the molecule gets cut off and the remainder forms a poisonous gas called hydrogen cyanide. Hydrogen cyanide was one of the main ingredients of Zyklon B, the commercial name of the pesticide used by the Nazis in the gas chambers. However, to poison yourself you would have to consume a huge number of seeds. One seed is approximately 0.7 grams, and not all of this mass gets converted to hydrogen cyanide. A minimum of 1.5 grams of hydrogen cyanide per kilogram of body weight is required to kill a human.

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