Cyanide in Garlic mustard, Alliaria petiolata.

I would like to remind my friends foragers to be careful not to indulge of over-consumption of wild plants.
Wild plants are super-foods, and accumulate both nutrients and poisons in higher rates than cultivated plants; can’t gulp them by lbs like you have been trained with ordinary foods! Wild spinach is high in oxalic acid, higher than supermarket varieties, but also higher in Ca and other minerals. Garlic mustard contains high levels of cyanide, which is easily destroyed by light and heat. Coming back to our roots is a rope-walking, we need to keep the balance and practice a variety of wild plants.

Abstract:”Cyanide production has been reported from over 2500 plant species, including some members of the Brassicaceae. We report that the important invasive plant, Alliaria petiolata, produces levels of cyanide in its tissues that can reach 100 ppm fresh weight (FW), a level considered toxic to many vertebrates.”

Our body is designed to tolerate some naturally-occurring plant poisons for thousands of years. It cannot stand, however, all the petro-chemical pesticides in the supermarket produce. I’d say foraging is safer than shopping if you know your site well.

Cyanides are easily destroyed by heat and oxygen, that’s why no one got sick from Garlic mustard recipes yet.


About Anya Pozdeeva, vifarms

Vertically Integrated Urbarn Aquaponics, Permaponics, Permaculture and Sustainable Living, New York Style!
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