Vitamin B-17 Benefits

Vitamin B-17 is an important nutrient that is gaining attention for its cancer-fighting abilities. Though conclusive evidence has not been presented, B-17 has been used in cancer treatments since the 1800s.

B-17 and Laetrile

Also known as Amygdaline, B-17 is a glycoside, meaning it bonds to other nutrients through sugar. Glycosides are often used in medications, and B-17 is no exception. The extracted version of B-17 is called laetrile, a substance used to help cancer patients fight diseased cells.

B-17 and Cancer

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Studies have shown that B-17 helps to increase the body's ability to fight cancer. B-17 does this through the creation of hydrogen cyanide, which is released into the body's tissues. This compound then attacks and subsequently destroys cancer cells. It is not used alone, however, but rather in conjunction with other important processes that involve enzymes, a diet that favors anti-carcinogenic foods and exercise. Clinical tests have shown that B-17 reacts well with vitamins A, C, E, B-15, pancreatic enzymes and other nutrients in order to break down malignant cells.

Other Benefits of B-17

B-17 is also touted as being able to reduce arthritic pain. It has shown itself to lower high blood pressure, strengthen the immune system and generally contribute to maintaining good health. As with most nutrients, it is best to consume B-17 as a part of those foods that contain it. If you do decide to purchase a supplement, consult with your physician.

Foods Containing B-17

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Foods with the highest amount of B-17 are apricot kernels and bitter almonds. Almost all fruit pips and kernels are filled with B-17, so eating apple seeds as well as the seeds from other fruits is an excellent way to receive the nutrient. Other foods include:

Bamboo Shoots Barley Beet tops Blackberries, boysenberries, cranberries and raspberries Brewer's yeast Brown rice, buckwheat and millet Butter beans, lima beans, fava beans, and garbanzo beans Cashews, macadamia nuts and pecans Currants Flax seeds Cassava Lentils Loquats Spinach Sprouts Wheatgrass

Side Effects of B-17

Some people can be sensitive to B-17, whereby they experience side effects such as weakness or headache. Drinking lemon, orange, grapefruit or grape juice will usually alleviate these symptoms right away. Additionally, you can take hydrochloric acid to prevent a reaction.