Traditional recipes

15 Poisonous Foods Slideshow

15 Poisonous Foods Slideshow

Pufferfish or Fugu

Pufferfish must be skillfully prepared in order to separate the delicious flesh from the parts that contain a deadly toxin. You can't make this one at home (and that's probably for the best) you'll have to go to one of the 17 restaurants in the U.S. that are licensed to sell it. To learn more about pufferfish visit TopTenz.

Live Octopus or San Nak Ji

Strictly speaking, San Nak Ji isn't poisonous, but it's potentially deadly nonetheless. As you swallow the live octopus, the suction cups can stick to your throat, choking you in the process. I guess you really need to chew? To learn more about the San Nak Ji fruit visit Moolf.


Who knew that this common spice, used to flavor the most wholesome of treats, is also a hallucinogen? Ingesting as little as two grams can have an effect, and ingesting a whole nut can lead to death. To learn more about nutmeg visit The Epicentre.


The leaves and stems of potatoes contain the poison glycoalkaloid. When the flesh of the potato has turned green it is also poisonous, so cut out any green parts before cooking. Keep your spuds in the dark to avoid green potatoes altogether. To learn more about potatoes visit Listverse.


Chiles contain a substance called capsaicin — this is the chemical that makes chiles hot. Though a little bit won’t hurt you, capsaicin is strong enough to be used in paint strippers and pepper spray. To learn more about chiles visit TopTenz.

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Berries may cost a pretty penny, but their high-fiber gives them LDL-lowering properties that make them a smart addition to any diet. What's more, researchers from Italy and Spain believe the anthocyanins in strawberries may also lower bad cholesterol. (Anthocyanins are the pigments that give the fruit its red color.)

When people ate two cups of strawberries a day for 30 days, their LDL levels fell by 13.72 percent, while HDL, or good cholesterol, levels remained unchanged, according to a Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry study. Research is still underway to determine if the anthocyanins do indeed play a role in lowering cholesterol, or if fiber is the factor. Either way, just 1 cup, or about 8 strawberries, will provide the cholesterol-lowering benefits, says Francesca Giampieri, Ph.D., a postdoctoral researcher at Marche Polytechnic University. Pretty sweet, huh?

9 American Foods That Have Been Banned In Other Countries

You want to believe you can put your trust in anything the FDA approves, but that's not necessarily true. The following foods are commonly eaten in America (seriously&mdashprobably on a daily basis, too), but have been outlawed in other countries due to their toxicity to humans. If you're eating anything on this list, it might be time to rethink your diet.

Where it's found: Cereals, baked goods, candy, sports drinks, soda, macaroni and cheese, and more

Why it's bad: Dyes might make your food look pretty, but they're made from chemicals derived from petroleum, and in case you didn't know, that's also used to make gasoline, diesel, and tar. If it fuels your car, it shouldn't fuel you.

Why it's bad: If you're doubling up your salmon intake because of all the amazing health benefits of those omega-3 fatty acids, you need to consider if you're buying wild caught or farm-raised. Farmed salmon are raised on an unnatural diet of grains, antibiotics, and other drugs, leaving the fish with gray flesh, which is then pinkened with synthetic astaxanthin made from petrochemicals.

Where it's found: Sports drinks and citrus flavored soda

Why it's bad: The main ingredient is a poisonous chemical that is toxic and corrosive to the body, having been linked to organ system damage, birth defects, schizophrenia, and more (if those weren't terrifying enough).

Where it's found: Fat-free potato chips and French fries

Why it's bad: Lower calorie counts aren't always worth it when the product is made with cooking oil substitute Olestra, which inhibits your bodys ability to absorb vitamins.

Where it's found: Frozen dinners, boxed pasta, packaged baked goods, various breads

Why it's bad: This chemical, which helps bleach flour quickly, is also used in foamed plastics, and has been linked to asthma.

Where it's found: Milk and dairy products

Why it's bad: You've probably heard about the dangers of synthetic hormones by now, so it's borderline insane that they're still legal in the United States. Cows treated with them can become infertile and develop inflamed udders, so if we think humans are immune to the effects, we're wrong. The hormones have been linked to breast, colon, and prostate cancer, so it's definitely not something to mess around with.

Where it's found: Cereal, gum, butter, meat, mixed nuts

Why it's bad: They help keep food from becoming rancid, which is good in theory, but these chemicals have been proven to cause cancer in rats, and the risk of causing cancer in humans is not one worth taking.

Where it's found: Poultry

Why it's bad: Arsenic in chicken feed promotes growth and boosts pigmentation, which in turn makes the chicken flesh look much more pink (and probably appear healthier), but it's anything but. Arsenic is classified as a human carcinogen by the Environmental Protection Agency, so eat at your own risk.

Where it's found: Wraps, rolls, flatbread, bagel chips, breadcrumbs

Why it's bad: Made with the same harmful chemical as brominated vegetable oil, brominated flour helps with decreasing baking time and cost, but is the convenience worth the risk of kidney damage, cancer, and nervous system damage?

For now, says Schecter, the take-home advice is an old message. "I think the lesson is what we've been saying in public health for a long time," he says. "More fruits and vegetables are going to be good for most of us. Animal fats should be eaten less than the average American eats them."


Schecter, A. Environmental Health Perspectives, May 31, 2012.

Arnold Schecter, MD, MPH, professor of environmental and occupational health, University of Texas School of Public Health, Dallas.

Linda S. Birnbaum, PhD, director, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and National Toxicology Program, National Institutes of Health.

Sonya Lunder, MPH, senior analyst, Environmental Working Group.

Bryan Goodman, spokesman, American Chemistry Council's North American Flame Retardant Alliance.

According to Banfield Pet Hospital®, “red blood cells can be damaged, resulting in the cells not being able to carry oxygen. Ingestion can also cause anemia (low red blood cell count) and, in severe cases, the anemia may lead to internal organ damage, organ failure or even death.”

Like apricot, cherry, apple and other stone fruit pits, peach pits contain amygdalin–which means there’s a risk of cyanide poisoning as the amygdalin degrades. Peach pits also pose a choking risks for dogs.

11 Common Foods That Can Turn Toxic During Cooking

It can be easy to take for granted that foods we’re accustomed to cooking with (especially healthy ones) are safe, but it turns out that’s not always true. While most of these foods won’t make you keel over within minutes of ingestion, they could make you feel sick temporarily or the negative effects can build up in your system over time like a cancer &mdash quite literally in some cases, actually.

The good news is that you don’t necessarily need to flip out if you’ve cooked with and eaten these foods. The bad news is that some of them are really, really tasty &mdash but for your health’s sake, now that you know their toxic potential, you should limit your intake .

I know what you’re thinking . “Prithee tell, what are these dastardly delights?” Ahead, click through the 11 you should know about.