Does apricot seeds consumption cause changes in human urine?
Keywords:amygdalin, apricot seed, urine, minerals, urea
Natural substances, such as amygdalin, used in alternative medicine gained high popularity. Common people as well as patients with different diseases have almost unlimited access to various natural supplements. To protect human health, it is very important to study effect of these substances. Amygdalin is a cyanogenic glucoside derived from seeds of rosaceous plants, for example seeds of bitter almonds (Prunus dulcis), or apricot, cherry, apple, peach, plum, etc. It is a natural product that owns antitumor activity, it has also been used for the treatment of asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, leprosy and diabetes and produces a kind of antitussive and antiasthmatic effects. The present in vivo study was designed to reveal whether amygdalin in apricot seeds has got an effect on human urine composition, pH value and urine associated health status after six weeks of oral administration. The study group finally consisted of 34 healthy adult volunteers (21 females and 13 males). All participants were asked to consume 60 mg.kg-1 body weight of bitter apricot seeds daily (approximately 3.0 mg.kg-1 of amygdalin) during 6 weeks. During the experiment, three urine collections were carried out (first collection - at the beginning of the experiment; second collection - after 21 days; third collection - after 42 days). Quantification of urine calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), phosphorus (P), sodium (Na), potassium (K), chlorides (Cl-), urea and pH value after apricot seeds supplementation was performed. Statistical analysis of variance showed, that consumption of bitter apricot seeds during 42 days had a significant (p <0.01) effect on amount of calcium excreted in urine, though this decrease shifted its level from elevated mean value in control collection into normal physiological range. Significant changes were observed in urea (p <0.05) and phosphorus (p <0.01) levels in urine after apricot seed ingestion, but gender was also considered to be a source of their variation.
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