18 of the World’s Deadliest Foods

How Many Are You Eating?


Those button mushrooms at the supermarket are fine, but there are dozens of poisonous mushrooms that can cause death. Think you can just study and safely forage? Many poisonous mushrooms look just like edible counterparts.


Rice can contain arsenic, which is a toxin that can cause abdominal pain and vomiting. While you would have to eat over 16 gallons of cooked rice – long term exposure to smaller amounts can lead to heart disease and bladder cancer, according to the FDA.


This tropical fruit is poisonous when unripe. Although you can find canned ackee in the US, the raw fruit is banned from importation.


Fugu is a type of puffer fish, or blowfish, and while the flesh is a delicacy, some of its organs contain tetrodotoxin, a potent toxin, that can cause paralysis and death.


Peanuts are fine, as long as you are not allergic. If you are, you probably carry an EpiPen wherever you go in case of anaphylaxis, which can lead to severe constriction of the airways, shock, and even loss of consciousness.


Sannakji is a traditional Korean dish of live octopus. The suction cups can get caught in your throat causing you to choke. About 6 people die per year from eating sannakji.

Hot Dogs

Hot dogs are a leading cause of choking, even fatalities, especially in children. That cylinder shape is the perfect size to block off the airway. Slice them lengthwise for safety.


Don’t try to shove as many marshmallows in your mouth as possible. This deadly game, called Chubby Bunny, has been responsible for deaths due to choking.


Before you throw out your tomatoes, we are only talking about the leaves. They contain glycoalkaloid, which can cause upset stomachs, severe cramping, and even anxiety. The flesh, skin and seeds of tomatoes are fine.


Rhubarb stalks are delicious in all kinds of savory and sweet dishes – but the leaves are highly toxic. They contain oxalic acid that if ingested could trigger extreme respiratory distress, kidney failure, seizures – and death.


Allergies to shellfish can be life-threatening, and are fairly common. So while lobster might seem like the pinnacle of elegant dining for you, make sure none of your dining companions have a shellfish allergy

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