Are apricot seeds safe to eat?

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question, “Are apricot seeds safe to eat?”. We will discuss the risks and benefits of eating apricot seeds. We will also look at using apricot seeds to help fight cancer.

Are apricot seeds safe to eat?

It is safe to eat apricot seeds in small quantities. In large quantities, they are toxic. The seed within the apricot pit is known as the apricot kernel. Apricot kernels resemble little almonds in appearance. Apricot seeds are white when they are fresh. When the skin dries out, it turns a pale brown color.

What are the risks of eating apricot seeds?

An apricot seed contains amygdalin, a substance that the body converts to cyanide. It has the potential to be harmful. Bitter apricot seeds have an unusually high proportion of amygdalin, according to researchers.

Cyanide kills human cells by stopping them from utilizing oxygen. Because the heart and brain need a lot of oxygen, cyanide is highly dangerous to them.

Long-term damage to the cardiac, brain and neurological system may result from exposure to cyanide.

Symptoms of cyanide poisoning

A headache is one of the main symptoms of cyanide poisoning. Other symptoms include nauseousness, vomiting, stomach cramps, dizziness/weakness, mental disorientation, convulsions, cardiac arrest, circulatory problems, unable to breathe, coma, and finally death.

If you feel poorly and have any of the above signs after eating seeds, seek medical help as soon as possible.

How many apricot seeds can I safely eat?

Adults could be exposed to too much cyanide in a single serving of 3 small apricot seeds or just one large apricot kernel, but a baby could be poisoned by just one small kernel.

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) recommends that no more than 20 micrograms of cyanide for every kilogram of body weight be eaten at one time. Adults are only allowed to eat one kernel at a time. For children, just half a kernel is too much.

Are there any benefits in eating apricot seeds?

Yes there are few benefits in eating apricot seeds.

High in healthy fatty acids: Essential fatty acids abound in apricot kernel oil. These are important for human life, but because the human body is incapable of producing them, people must obtain them from their food.

High in Vitamin E: Although apricot kernels do not have many vitamins and minerals, the oil is high in vitamin E.

High in fiber: Apricot seeds have a fiber content of 5% per seed! Consuming them may aid to maintain digestive health because they are high in fiber. Dietary fiber, or fiber obtained from fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds, is essential for the proper function and health of the digestive system’s organs. 

Fiber maintains the health of your colon while also controlling the digestive system and functions.

Anti-Inflammatory and Anti-Arthritic Properties: Apricot seeds are often recognized for their anti-inflammatory properties. Apricot  seeds’ fiber content can trap acids and other impurities in the gut and aid in their evacuation.

What are the uses of apricot seeds?

  • Proteins, fiber, and a large percentage of oil are all found in the kernels, which can be extracted. People utilize oil squeezed from the kernel in the same manner they use sweet almond and olive oil in their cooking. Apricot kernels can be found in processed goods including amaretto cookies, apricot jams, and almond finger biscuits.
  • The bitter form of apricot kernel oil and kernels are commonly used in cosmetics such as body lotion, lip balm, face cream, and essential oil.
  • People in India use apricot seed oil to manufacture massage oil because they claim it soothes aches and pains.

Do apricot seeds help fight cancer?

Amygdalin from apricot kernels and laetrile, a semi-synthetic version of amygdalin, was originally promoted as cancer fighters, however, research has revealed that they are ineffective. The FDA has not approved laetrile or amygdalin for any purpose. In the stomach, amygdalin is transformed into cyanide.

Although some people use the apricot seed to treat cancer, there is no scientific proof to back this up. When consumed in high quantities, it is also dangerous. Refined apricot seed extract or oil is sometimes used to flavor liquors and in topical treatments.

Is apricot fruit safe to eat?

Yes, it is completely safe to eat apricot fruits since the chemicals of the kernel inside the apricot seed does not make contact with the edible flesh.

Apricot fruits have so many health benefits, so they make a good addition to your fruit intake.

Other FAQs about Apricot that you may be interested in.

Can you eat apricots when pregnant?

Can you eat apricot skin?


In this brief guide, we answered the question, “Are apricot seeds safe to eat?”. We discussed the risks and benefits of eating apricot seeds. We also looked at using apricot seeds to help fight cancer.

If you have any questions or comments, please let us know.


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