Foods You Should Never Eat Raw


Image credit : Reavell Creative Ltd (Getty Image)

Nowadays pigs are raised a lot differently than they are used to be, but there's still a risk that If the meat is eaten undercooked, you'll contract one of two nasty parasites: trichinosis or pork tapeworm. These parasites cause stomach issues like nausea and vomiting. Very severe cases can lead to death, though it's rare.

Kidney Beans

Image credit: Prathyush Thomas

Raw red kidney beans contain proteins called lectins which are harmful at high doses. Just a handful of raw kidney beans is enough to cause gastrointestinal problems like nausea and vomiting. The more you eat, the more intense your symptoms will be.

Seeds of Apple

Image Source :

Apples are popular and healthy with antioxidant properties that help protect against cancer-inducing oxidative damage that can lead to various health problems. But as you bite deep into an apple, reaching its core, you are confronted with tiny black seeds. They contain amygdalin, a substance that releases cyanide when it comes into contact with human digestive enzymes, but acute toxicity is rare with accidental ingestion of seeds.


Image credit : Zoofari

Raw potatoes are potentially toxic because of a compound called solanine. In general, green potatoes – even ones just a little green near the skin – or ones that are starting to sprout eyes have a higher solanine content. Symptoms of potato poisoning include stomach pain, headache, and paralysis. Potatoes with a very high concentration of solanine will have some green discoloration when you cut into them, and you shouldn't eat a green potato, even cooked. Unlike the potato itself, potato leaves are toxic whether you eat them raw or cooked.

Bitter Almonds

Bitter almonds, which differ from the sweet almonds more common in grocery stores, contains dangerous levels of hydrogen cyanide. Bitter almonds are very common in Europe. Children who ingest just a few raw bitter almonds are at risk of death. Adults can eat far more and survive, though you would experience some symptoms that might make you wish you hadn't. Hydrogen cyanide poisoning includes symptoms from dizziness and headache to vomiting and convulsions, depending on how much you've eaten. Proper cooking is the key to making bitter almonds safe to ingest. Blanching or roasting destroys the hydrogen cyanide in bitter almonds.


Image credit : Kahoroa

Taro root has more fiber than a potato and is a good source of potassium, vitamin C, calcium, vitamin E, B vitamins, and trace minerals. But all parts of the taro are toxic if consumed raw. This is due to the high levels of calcium oxalate; a crystal like poison that can cause kidney stones and mouth irritation in the form of numbing, burning, or an itching sensation. The roots also feature a hairy outer coating that can cause irritation from the juices if they touch the skin while attempting to remove this coating. Wearing rubber gloves prevent this issue while cleaning the vegetable.

Rhubarb leaves

Image credit: Dieter Weber

Raw rhubarb leaves are more poisonous. The leaves contain insanely high levels of a toxin called oxalic acid, which when consumed can cause serious kidney damage, and possibly even death. Even a small amount can make you sick, and 10 or so pounds is enough to kill you. The toxic rhubarb leaves have been used in flavoring extracts, after the oxalic acid is removed by treatment with precipitated chalk.

Wild Mushrooms

Image Source:

Raw wild mushrooms can be tough to digest, so cooking helps you avoid gastrointestinal distress, but also many are actually toxic and potentially deadly when raw. Cooking breaks down the harmful compounds, leaving you with a bowlful of mushroomy goodness. Different wild mushrooms need to be cooked differently. Some toxins break down when you expose them to heat. Others need to be boiled away.

Castor Beans

Image credit: H Zell

Castor beans are the source of castor oil. People ingest castor oil to relieve constipation, to induce labor, and for other naturopathic purposes, but they're extremely toxic to both people and animals. Like red kidney beans, castor beans contain high concentrations of a particularly harmful lectin. Even cooking castor beans isn't enough to destroy ricin. In fact, you make the poison using the mash leftover from processing castor beans for their oil.


Image Source:

Both roots and leaves of cassava plant can be eaten. Consuming uncooked cassava turns group of its compounds into hydrogen cyanide in your body. Hydrogen cyanide interferes with your body's use of oxygen, basically causing you to drown without the trouble of being submerged. To cook cassava roots properly, you should always peel them first and discard the peel. Then, you can fry them like you would potato chips or french fries. You can also boil the roots just like potatoes, but make sure that they're completely cooked through.


Image Source:

Chaya, also known as tree spinach, actually beats spinach when it comes to nutrient content. It's a better source of protein, calcium, and iron. Like with cassava and bitter almonds, chaya contains higher concentration of hydrogen cyanide. To cook chaya, just boil the leaves for 20 minutes on the stove, and make sure that you don't inhale the cooking fumes or steam, and that the pan you're using isn't aluminum; chaya plus aluminum equals explosive diarrhea.

Foods You Should Never Eat Raw Foods You Should Never Eat Raw Reviewed by Vasanth on August 18, 2016 Rating: 5