Laetrile is not a miracle drug . It is simply a concentrated form of Nitriloside. Amygdalin (Laetrile/ Vitamin B17) is particularly prevalent in the seeds of those fruits in the Prunus Rosacea family (bitter almond, apricot, blackthorn, cherry, nectarine, peach and plum.) It is found in natural foods which contain nitriloside and has been used and studied extensively for well over 100 years. It is also contained in grasses, maize, sorghum, millet, cassava, linseed, apple seeds, and many other foods that, generally, have been deleted from the menus of modern civilization. Fruit kernels or seeds generally have other nutrients as well, some protein, unsaturated fatty protein, unsaturated fatty acids, and various minerals. The most common source of B17 is the apricot kernel and is present in about a 2-3 percent levels of concentration within the seed kernel.
Vitamin B17 / Laetrile is probably one of the most controversial medical topics in the last 30 years. You may remember back in the 50's - mid 70's there was a lot hype in the medical world regarding a new natural cancer treatment that was discovered that killed cancer cells. This was the result of Dr Ernst Krebs findings and his research in a book called World Without Cancer.
How does B17 kill cancer?
Firstly we need to understand that our bodies use several enzymes to perform many tasks. Our body has one particular enzyme called Rhodanese which is found in large quantities throughout the body but is not present where ever there are cancer cells. Yet, where ever you find cancer in the body, you find another enzyme called Beta-Glucosidase. So, we have the enzyme Rhodanese found everywhere in the body except at the cancer cells, and we have the enzyme Beta-Glucosidase found in very large quantities only at the cancer cell but not found anywhere else in the body. If there is no cancer in the body there is no enzyme Beta-Glucosidase.
Now the following is what scares most people. You see, Vitamin B17 is made up of 2 parts glucose, 1 part Hydrogen Cyanide and 1 part Benzaldehyde(analgesic/painkiller). So its very important you understand the following: When B17 is introduced to the body, it is broken down by the enzyme Rhodanese. The Rhodanese breaks the Hydrogen Cyanide and Benzaldehyde down into 2 by-products, Thiocyanate and Benzoic acid which are beneficial in nourishing healthy cells and forms the metabolic pool production for vitamin B12. Any excess of these by-products is expelled in normal fashion from the body via urine. Vitamin B17 passes through your body and does not last longer than 80 minutes inside your body as a result of the Rhodanese breaking it down. (Hydrogen Cyanide has been proven to be chemically inert and non toxic when taken as food or refined pharmaceutical such as laetrile. Sugar has be shown to be 20 times more toxic than B17 - see good & bad cyanide).
HERE IS THE GOOD PART - When the B17 comes into contact with cancer cells, there is no Rhodanese to break it down and neutrelise it but instead, only the enzyme Beta-Gucosidase is present in very large quantities. When B17 and Beta-Glucosidase come into contact with each other, a chemical reaction occurs and the Hydrogen Cyanide and Benzaldehyde combine synergistically to produce a poison which destroys and kills the cancer cells. This whole process is known as selective toxicity. Only the cancer cells are specifically targeted and destroyed. See the diagram above.
Foods Containing B17 (Nitrilosides)
Vitamin B-17 is one of the main sources of food in cultures such as the Eskimos, the Hunzas, the Abkasians and many more. Did you know that within these tribes there has never been a reported case of cancer? According to Dr. Krebs, we need a minimum of 100 mg of vitamin B-17 (the equivalent of about seven apricots seeds) too nearly guarantee a cancer free life. Foods that contain vitamin B-17 are as follows:
- KERNELS OR SEEDS OF FRUIT: The highest concentration of vitamin B-17 to be found in nature, aside from bitter almonds. Apple, apricot, cherry, nectarine, peach, pear, plum, prune.
- BEANS: broad (Vicia faba), burma, chickpeas, lentils (sprouted), lima, mung (sprouted), Rangoon, scarlet runner.
- NUTS: Bitter almond, macadamia, cashew.
- BERRIES: Almost all wild berries. Blackberry, chokeberry, Christmas berry, cranberry, elderberry, raspberry, strawberry.
- SEEDS: Chia, flax, sesame.
- GRASSES: Acacia, alfalfa (sprouted), aquatic, Johnson, milkweed, Sudan, minus, wheat grass, white dover.
- GRAINS: oat groats, barley, brown rice, buckwheat groats, chia, flax, millet, rye, vetch, wheat berries.
- MISCELLANEOUS: bamboo shoots, fuschia plant, sorghum, wild hydrangea, yew tree (needles, fresh leaves).
Two rules of thumb: According to Dr. Krebs, the basic concept is that sufficient daily B-17 may be obtained by following either of two suggestions:
First, eating all the B-17-containing fruits whole (seeds included), but not eating more of the seeds by themselves than you would be eating if you ate them in the whole fruit. Example: if you eat three apples a day, the seeds in the three apples are sufficient B-17. You would not eat a pound of apple seeds.
Second, one peach or apricot kernel per 10 lbs of body weight is believed to be more than sufficient as a normal safeguard in cancer prevention, although precise numbers may vary from person to person in accordance with individual metabolism and dietary habits. A 170-lb man, for example, might consume 17 apricot or peach kernels per day and receive a biologically reasonable amount of Vitamin B-17.
And two important notes:
Certainly, you can consume too much of anything. Too many kernels or seeds, for example, can be expected to produce unpleasant side effects. These natural foods should be consumed in biologically rational amounts (no more than 30 to 35 kernels per day).
High concentrations of B-17 are obtained by eating the natural foods in their raw or sprouting stage. This does not mean that moderate cooking and other tampering will destroy the B-17 content. Foods cooked at a temperature sufficient for a Chinese dinner, for example, will not lose their B-17 content.