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Top five 'deadliest' foods

india Updated: Nov 27, 2010 15:15 IST
Rupali Dean

I was in Switzerland recently and I ate a red berry used as a decoration on a dining table. My Swiss friend got worried and immediately called a doctor, who said, “It is very deadly. But eating one will do her no harm.” This incident taught me a lesson: food decorations are never to be eaten.

Fugu
The liver and the ovaries of fugu contain lethal amounts tetrodotoxin, and one fish contains enough poison to kill about 100 people. But a Fugu chef is trained for three years to prepare this dish and about 80% students fail in this test as it is very stringent. It is mandatory for the chef to taste the dish before he serves it.

Fugu fishMushroom

Three of the most lethal mushrooms belong to the genus Amanita: the death cap and destroying angels, the fool's mushroom and two are from the genus Cortinarius: the deadly webcap, and the fool's webcap. Several species of Galerina, Lepiota, and Conocybe also contain lethal amounts of amatoxins.



These mushrooms are filled to the brim with toxins; a single cap is enough to kill one person. There is no way you can remove the poison out of the cap either by soaking, cooking or drying!

Raw Baby Octopus
Sample this: live baby Octopus, lightly seasoned with sesame oil, cut into small pieces that wriggles in your throat while you eat them! This dish, known as Sannakji, if eaten slowly, can choke you to death because the suction cups on the octopus’ arm pieces are still active!

Tapioca
Cassava is a starchy food and is more like a cross between a potato and a raw banana. Fatal cyanide poisoning can occur if the root is eaten without proper processing and it may even result in paralysis. Drying, soaking and boiling removes most of the cyanogenic compounds.

Nutmeg
Over 25gm may produce convulsions for up to sixty hours, owing to the fact that it contains myristicin, a compound which acts to weakly inhibit an enzyme called monoamine oxidase that helps to break down certain brain neurotransmitters.