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Is vitamin B-17 a real vitamin?

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Quick Answer

There is no evidence that amygdalin, also known as vitamin B-17, functions as a vitamin in the human body, according to the National Cancer Institute. Amygdalin is actually a precursor to cyanide, and scientists have discredited it as a treatment for human cancers, says WebMD.

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Full Answer

Amygdalin is present in apricot kernels, states WebMD. Two chemists first extracted it in 1830, according to the National Cancer Institute. Although many anecdotal reports allege that amygdalin is an effective treatment for cancers, scientists have performed only two clinical trials, and neither had proper controls. These trials found that amygdalin was ineffective in treating cancer and resulted in side effects that mimicked cyanide poisoning.

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