Surprisingly Dangerous Foods People Eat Anyway


From potentially poisonous delicacies to the
everyday meals with unexpected hazards, today we look at Surprisingly Dangerous Foods People
Eat Anyway. Number 13. Potatoes
Left to sit long enough, potatoes will transform from their rustic brown color to green. Though
they may seem just unripe, and the urge to simply cut around the green may seem tempting,
these potatoes are actually becoming toxic! Potatoes are naturally a root, so the skin
of this food isn’t used to sunlight, however once exposed to the sun, it will begin to
create chlorophyll , the green pigment found in most verdant veggies. This gives the potato
its green hue, but along with this pigment, another chemical is produced: solanine . Originally
produced by potatoes as a compound to protect against predators as the tuber sprouts, solanine
is poisonous to humans in addition to whatever other natural predators potatoes have. Fortunately
for humans, it requires ingesting a sizeable amount in order to feel the ill effects solanine
would cause. The highest concentration of solanine in green potatoes is in the skin,
thus peeling before eating will help reduce any danger, though sticking to ripe potatoes
is the most recommended preventative measure. Number 12. Hot Dogs
Right next to hamburgers, one of the most adored foods in America is the hot dog. Every
year, over 150 million hot dogs are eaten on the Fourth of July alone, with billions
more consumed annually. But aside from being one of the top protein choices of the nation,
hot dogs are also the number one choking hazard among toddlers across the United States! In
general, large, round and solid foods pose a danger to young children since their body
is not the right size, or they lack the eating experience, to consume them safely. It’s recommended
by the American Academy of Pediatrics to keep hot dogs away from children age 4 and younger.
However, if a child must have a hot dog, cutting the frank lengthwise first before chopping
it into half-inch long pieces will help keep it both safe and edible for kids. Number 11. Monkey Brains
Different cultures around the world vary from one another in all sorts of ways, the least
of which is food. Certain flavors, spices, and even meats can only be experienced in
specific parts of the world. While this can provide a magical, memorable experience for
those not accustomed, sometimes these delicacies can pose a threat much worse than irritated
digestion. One such dish is monkey brains, which is said to be a traditional food item
in countries like China, Singapore, and Malaysia, though evidence on the subject is scarce and
chalked up by some as urban legend. Regardless if factual or not, though, this practice would
be especially hazardous due to the high chance of contracting a debilitating brain condition
such as the Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, more commonly known as mad cow disease. Number 10. Fruit Seeds
Eating fruits as a child can be frightening. Many times, children come under the belief
that should they swallow a seed, they will inevitably have a fruit plant growing within
their gut in no time. While this concept is little more than the product of adolescent
fears, swallowing the seeds of produce like apples or cherries shouldn’t be taken lightly.
These seeds actually contain the toxic compound hydrogen cyanide , the likes of which can
prove fatal if enough is ingested. However, one would have to take in approximately .68
milligrams of cyanide per pound of body weight to experience lethal side effects, which means
eating a whole lot of seeds! Furthermore, the hydrogen cyanide is usually contained
within the shell of the seed, requiring some sort of grinding or chewing to release its
contents. So worry not if you swallow a fruit seed whole, it will pass through your digestion
without even exposing your body to the poison it hides within. Number 9. Echizen Kurage
One of the most dangerous animals one can encounter in the open ocean is the jellyfish.
Its venomous sting, depending on the species, can cause an assortment of effects, from a
painful sting to paralysis resulting in drowning. But the wild isn’t the only place these strange
jellied creatures can cause harm. In Asian nations like China, Japan, and Korea, jellyfish
is prepared as a dish, utilizing different species. Nomura’s jellyfish, though, is a
particularly hazardous example of edible jellyfish, used in a Japanese dish called Echizen Kurage.
Individuals of this species are roughly the size of a refrigerator, making them an attractive
species for preparing large quantities of food, however removing the toxic parts of
this jellyfish can prove tricky. If not prepared and cooked properly, Echizen Kurage can cause
illness and potentially lethal side effects. Number 8. Alfalfa Sprouts
When it comes to food, certain conditions are more prone than others to attract dangerous
bacteria, such as salmonella , listeria and E.coli . Raw meat is the most egregious offender
in this department, but equally as dangerous is none other than raw sprouts. Essentially
freshly grown grass and the seeds from which they grow, this vegetable is susceptible to
contamination from a litany of sources when harvested from the warm, humid conditions
in which they thrive in the wild. The risk with raw sprouts like alfalfa is so great
that children, pregnant women, and the elderly are all warned to steer clear of them all
together as their immune system may not be able to withstand the effects. The most assured
way to avoid contracting anything from eating raw sprouts is to thoroughly cook them before
consuming. Number 7. Sannakji
Octopus is prepared as a classic seafood dish in various cultures, finding a place in everything
from Latin to Asian cuisine. But in Korea, one version of this oceanic protein is hazardous.
Called Sannakji , the octopus is served raw and still wriggling! Sushi chefs put an end
to the fresh cephalopod before serving, thankfully, but it’s still so fresh that the tentacles
will continue to be active as you eat. This can be problematic when considering the creature’s
suction cups, which could attach to the inside of your throat on the way down! It can be
served as an individual adolescent, ready to be swallowed whole, or as just a set of
tentacles with quick seasoning and sesame seed oil, but both incarnations of the dish
pose a threat to those who eat it. Approximately six people pass due to choking on this dish
each year. Number 6. Shellfish
Crustaceans and molluscs, otherwise referred to as shellfish, are enjoyed by millions across
the planet, yet these slippery delicacies are some of the most dangerous foods to risk
eating. One of the leading causes of foodborne illnesses in the United States is raw shellfish
as they are common breeding ground for bacteria. Their filtered way of breathing causes all
sorts of dangerous microbes into the animals only to be absorbed into their bodies and
potentially transferred to unassuming diners! One major risk lies in raw oysters, which
are susceptible to a bacteria called Vibrio , which can cause vomiting, bowel issues,
infections, and even prove fatal. It’s also noteworthy to know your allergies, as shellfish
can cause anaphylaxis , an exceptionally life-threatening allergic reaction. Number 5. Cassava
Native to South America, the starchy root known as Cassava , or yuca in many regions,
is one staple food to more than a half billion people worldwide. In tropical regions, it
acts as a major source of carbohydrates, but is also used to create tapioca for use in
puddings and other foods. But despite being an essential part of diets in developing nations
globally, Cassava is a potentially treacherous root. When harvested raw, these tubers have
high concentrations of cyanide , a danger that must be cooked out thoroughly before
consuming. Should the starch be eaten undercooked, residual cyanide can lead to goiters {GOY-terz],
ataxia , cyanide intoxication, and even paralysis or one’s demise. Number 4. Ackee Fruit
A strange yet popular indigineous fruit to Jamaica, the Ackee is notable for its red
outer shell, the yellow, egg-like fruit within, and its bulbous black seeds. It’s a cornerstone
of Jamaica’s national dish of ackee and saltfish, and is commonly eaten by Jamaican natives
without trouble. However, if you’re unfamiliar with the fruit, it might be best to ask for
guidance, as consuming the wrong part can lead to the ingestion of hypoglycin A, a toxin
that can cause lowered blood sugar, illness, and can even be life-threatening. It’s recommended
to wait until the outer shell of the ackee has turned red and the fruit has opened up
on its own accord before consuming, and even then, be sure to only eat the yellow interior.
Consuming the outer husk, or the great black seeds, of this plant will surely lead to the
mentioned side effects, which are collectively known as Jamaican vomiting sickness. Number 3. Nutmeg
A fragrant spice made from the ground seed of the same name, Nutmeg is often used to
enhance the flavor of meat, potatoes, confections, baked goods, and even eggnog. Typically used
in small doses, this spice has a slightly sweet taste and probably seems like just another
harmless flavor to most. But the truth about nutmeg is that it only takes 5 grams of nutmeg
to be toxic. Overdosing on nutmeg can result in nausea, vomiting, and even a comatose-like
state, with long-lasting psychological and physical side effects, beyond this it can
be fatal. Number 2. Fugu
Given the awkwardly spherical shape it can inflate to and the needle sharp spines with
which many are equipped, pufferfish are far from the ideal meal for predators. Should
a hungry fish manage to successfully catch one of these creatures, though, the worst
is yet to come as their ovaries and livers are full of a potent neurotoxin that can cause
fatalities to many species, including humans. Nevertheless, pufferfish are traditional dish
in Japanese cuisine, referred to as Fugu . If not cooked correctly, the seafood dish is
said to be 1,200 times the lethality of cyanide , with enough toxin to slay 30 adult humans.
Because of the extreme precision required to make this meal non-toxic, it has been banned
in the United States and sells for hundreds of dollars internationally elsewhere. Number 1. Kidney Beans
Beans typically taste great in classic meals like stew or chili, so it may seem unbelievable
that they can actually harm you. However, in the case of the kidney bean, you will want
to make sure its cooked all the way through before chowing down. Raw kidney beans are
rich in a toxic plant protein called phytohaemagglutinin , which can induce symptoms like vomiting,
nausea, and digestion issues, the likes of which should cease within 5 hours of initial
pain without medical assistance. It only takes five or so uncooked beans to cause this, so
cook with care when handling kidney beans.

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