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Health Benefits of Apricot Seed or Kernel

Updated on November 5, 2016
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Mazlan wasn’t into health & fitness, but as age crept up on him, he realized the importance & benefits of living a fit & healthy. lifestyle

The many health benefits of these apricot fruits and its seeds are amazing
The many health benefits of these apricot fruits and its seeds are amazing | Source

Apricot always reminds me of Jarod Kintz's quote that says "“I love apricots. They're so fuzzy they're furry. They're like little pets you can eat legally.” Ahh, how sweet!

These fuzzy and furry little pets are actually loaded with all the nutritional benefits and have earned itself the title of one of the world's healthiest food. For example, its high mineral content will assists people with anemia, asthma, tuberculosis and bronchitis.

But wait, not only is the fruit full of health benefits, the apricot seed or kernel is also equally good. Although surrounded with controversy on its claim to cure cancer, the overall benefits outweigh the underlying fear of eating the apricot seeds.

Just like pomegranate and dates, eating apricot seed is very common and popular in the Middle East and considered one of their traditional and herbal medicine.

Raw Apricot Seeds have many health benefits
Raw Apricot Seeds have many health benefits | Source

Health Benefits of Apricot Seed or Kernel

Taking apricot seed or kernel gives you several health benefits, which are:

  • It is claimed that vitamin B17 helps in the prevention of cancer. Apricot seed has the highest percentage of B17 in any fruits and consuming this seed will help prevent cancer.
  • Vitamin B17, and hence apricot seed, also helps to lower high blood pressure
  • Helps to reduce pain associated with arthritis.
  • Help to maintain the general health and well-being. Hence, it will strengthen the ability to resist infections like colds and flu

Most people eat apricot seeds not just for the overall general well-being, but because of its property to prevent cancer. Let us explore this further.

Controversy in its claim to cure cancer

Dr. Ernts T. Krebs, an American biochemist, had advanced the theory that cancer is not caused by any particular virus or bacteria, but a deficiency in essential nutrients. He concluded that Vitamin B17, commonly known as Amygdalin or Laetrile, could prevent cancer. This was back in 1952.

His finding, however, was not accepted by cancer researchers and dubbed as quackery

Cyanide in B17

Another issue with vitamin B17 is its content of one part cyanide, one part benzaldehyde and two parts glucose. Critics of B17 warned the danger of eating apricot seeds (which has the highest content of B17 or laetrile) and even suggested that it can be fatal. This is largely due to its cyanide content.

Will eating apricot seed or kernel be fatal?

An apricot seed contains just about half mg of cyanide (Holzbecker, Moss & Ellenberger 1984). Based on a report by the Committee on Toxicity (2006), dosage of between 0.5 - 3.5 mg per kg of body weight can be fatal. Hence, a man weighing 175 lb. has to consume 40mg to 280 mg that is equivalent to about 80-560 apricot seeds, per day, for it to be fatal.

It is claimed that about five milligram of cyanide is considered sufficient to prevent cancer. This is equivalent to eating 10 apricot seeds per day. It is also claimed that to combat existing cancer, you will need to consume 50 apricot seeds.

This is all below the danger zone.

There has been no reported death due to cyanide poisoning (related to eating apricot seeds) except for the reported death of two Turkish children after eating apricot seeds that happened in 1957 & 1962. However, the amount was not documented.

As a comparison, gm. per gm. Aspirin is more toxic than laetrile. However, it is always best to take apricot seed in smaller amount initially and consult a doctor that practices natural medicine for any further guidance. This will give the full health benefits of apricot seed.

Will it cure my cancer if I am already in Stage Four and above?

Unfortunately, due to the low dosage of B17 in apricot seed, it will not have any major effect on cancer that has reached a serious Stage Four and above.

Buying Apricot Seeds or Kernels

To get the best health benefits of apricot seed, be sure to buy only RAW apricot seed as others will have the beneficial enzyme destroyed in the preparation process.

Eating Apricot Seeds

Apricot seed is bitter in taste and It has to be chewed until it liquefies. To help with this bitter taste, I had a bit of honey together with the seed. Now, I take them direct as I had gotten used to the taste.

It is best eaten before meal.

Why are Botanically based Cures not Reported in Media

There are many botanically based cures for ailments including cancer, which are not reported in mainstream media.

Some these alternative cures are inexpensive and if you have the plant in your garden, it is practically free!

So why are their health benefits not reported or even suppressed by the media? In certain cases, the media will report on the danger of taking these alternative botanical 'medicines'.

Could it because these inexpensive botanical and natural treatments will eat into the profits of the giant pharmaceutical companies? That no conclusive studies done to determine its effectiveness or its side-effects.

To be fair, even the medicines sold by these pharmaceutical companies have its side-effects.

The reason is best known to them, but as a consumer, do your research and seek out forums on these alternative treatments before you start on the regime.

However, do remember that most botanical based treatments are either fruits or plants, so you are actually eating fruits or vegetables rather than taking medicines.

Other Uses of Apricot Seed or Kernel

Apricot Seed in Cooking

The benefit of apricot seed is now available in oil form!

It is used for cooking and in the flavoring of amaretto, a traditional Italian liquor.

You can also use it as salad oil. It is however, an expensive oil, but its many health benefits may well justify its high cost.

Apricot Seed Oil in Cosmetic

Apricot seed oil is rich in sterois, fatty acids, Vitamin E & A and can help moisturize and nourish skin especially for dry and mature skins. It is widely used in cosmetics especially in creams, soaps and skin lotions.

The oil is easily absorbed by the skin and will not leave an oily residue. Hence, it is popular as a massage oil as well as sunbathing oil.

It is also used as a base in aromatherapy blends.

Should I Try Apricot Seed or Kernel?

As I had mentioned earlier, the many benefits of eating apricot seed or kernel far outweighs the media report on the danger of cyanide in B17.

However, do your own research and decide it for yourself.

The links and video shown below can be your initial start to your research.

Never give up in your search for natural health and remedies that are inexpensive.

Check Out my Other Healthy Fruits Hub

You may want to check out on the Health Benefits of Pomegranate and also Health Benefits of Pomegranate Vinegar. Pomegranate is rich in antioxidants and offers many benefits including a healthy and clear skin as well as wrinkle free skin.

Health Benefits of Dates Vinegar include suppression of hunger and appetite, hence good for weight loss. It also helps in the prevention of abdominal cancer.

Among the many Health Benefits of Mulberry are better eye-sights, assist in hair growth and will darken your grey hair.

You may not believe this, but one of the Health Benefits of Mineral Water is a healthy and stunning hair. How? By washing your hair with mineral water, you will get to enjoy this benefit.

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This article on the health benefits of apricot seed or kernel, is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction.

Please consult your appropriate health provider for any health and medical related matter or if you have a history of medical problems.

Alternative Cure for Cancer with B17- An Interview


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    • greatstuff profile image

      Mazlan 3 months ago from Malaysia

      TYL, yes you are right. Thanks for dropping by and sharing your experience.

    • profile image

      TYL 4 months ago

      After reading your article I tried eating the apricot seed. Yep, it taste bitter. But you will get the hang of it after a few days.

    • greatstuff profile image

      Mazlan 2 years ago from Malaysia

      Hi abdulhamid. Yes, you are right, one should always eat the apricot seeds in moderation. Thanks for sharing.

    • profile image

      abdulhamid 2 years ago

      I am using these apricot seeds.though they are bitter one can get used to them slowly.a few in a day will not have any should always use in moderation.otherwise every eatable in nature poisonous!but in a controlled way everything is fine and healthy.

    • greatstuff profile image

      Mazlan 2 years ago from Malaysia

      Hi Rebecca, Thanks for dropping by & sharing this useful information

    • profile image

      Rebecca 2 years ago

      No matter what this article says, four years ago we had a friend with cancer who only had a week to live, and we fed her b17 all the time, and she's still alive today.

    • profile image

      EG 3 years ago

      I am in my mid 30's, when I was little, perhaps up to 12 yrs of age, my parents had an apricot tree by our house, and every summer we ate the apricots and the kernels - LOTS of them! and none of us kids ever had any goofy poisoning that people claim that apricot kernels would do. I also ate apple seeds - not in big quantities because they are hard to peel, and i still do when I eat freshly picked apples.

    • LensMan999 profile image

      LensMan999 4 years ago from Trans-Neptunian region

      The uses of apricot are quite wonderful. Though I knew some of them, many of them are completely new to me. Thanks a lot for sharing such a useful hub. The video included at the end is very useful.

    • compu-smart profile image

      compu-smart 4 years ago from London UK

      Lots of very useful information here,,,great stuff!!

      ps. Ref comment above, What about almonds Alydar!? because I eat them nearly everyday!!??

    • greatstuff profile image

      Mazlan 5 years ago from Malaysia

      Hi Elizabeth. Thanks for your input and for stopping by. I have heard about this injection; I guess this is when you have a serious case. Thanks again for contributing.

    • profile image

      Elizabeth 5 years ago

      You can buy B17 vitamin, and has injection form, for cancer fights. You have to get doctor advise.

    • greatstuff profile image

      Mazlan 5 years ago from Malaysia

      Hi Am Azad, thanks for the tips. If you read my article, the amount can be much higher than 2 a day. In fact I personally take 5 a day and some of my friends from India are taking 5 in the morning and 5 in the evening. You should however start slowly with 1 or 2 a day and increase the number accordingly. For those who have not tried, it taste bitter to a very 'terrible degree'..I can't think of a proper word to describe the taste. Don't worry, you will get use to it after a while!

    • profile image

      Am Azad 5 years ago

      You can eat only two apricot kernels a day.

    • greatstuff profile image

      Mazlan 5 years ago from Malaysia

      Hi are right, vitamin B17 (hence cyanide) is also present in apple seed, but in smaller doses, compared to apricot seed. It is also present in raspberries, pecan, blackberries & cashew nut.

    • Alydar profile image

      Alydar 5 years ago from Beaufort, SC

      Cyanide content seems to scare everyone...if only everyone knew there is enough cyanide in 1/2 cup of apple seeds to kill if not make an adult seriously ill but I haven't seen the consumption of apples ever wane...don't even bring up almonds!