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Vitamin B17

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Common Name: Vitamin B17

Vitamin B17, also known as laetrile and amygdalin, is another controversial "vitamin," as its source, the apricot kernel, becomes a focus of increasing interest. Laetrile is a nitriloside compound composed of four molecules: two sugar, one benzaldehyde, and one cyanide. It is likely the cyanide that accounts for the controversy over this substance, particularly in regard to cancer therapy. Using laetrile-amygdalin, vitamin B17, nitriloside, whatever we call it-as a treatment for cancer is now illegal in the United States. Some people seeking such treatment go to Mexico or other laetrile-supportive countries.

Arguments against laetrile as a therapy cite concerns about possible cyanide toxicity as well as studies that show it is not effective as a cancer treatment. Studies, however, cannot be completely objective, especially on a subject as complex as cancer, which is influenced by so many factors. The proponents of laetrile claim that cyanide is a natural molecule found in food and is not toxic in normal doses; laetrile treatment itself is not known to have any side effects in usual dosages. But, obviously, considering Western medicine's use of chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery, side effects are not the main concern when treating a life-threatening disease. The proof in any treatment is, ultimately, whether it works.

Amygdalin is not digested in the stomach by hydrochloric acid, but passes into the small intestine where it is acted on by enzymes that split it into various compounds, which are then absorbed.

Vitamin 17 Sources:

Laetrile is found primarily in apricot kernels and comprises about 2? percent of the kernel. It is also available in the kernels of other fruits, such as plums, cherries, peaches, nectarines, and apples. The fruit kernels or seeds generally have other nutrients as well-some protein, unsaturated fatty acids, and various minerals. B17 is not found with other B vitamins in yeasts. Many plants do, however, contain some B17, with the sprouting seeds, especially mung bean sprouts, containing the highest amount.

Vitamin 17 Functions:

The specific theoretical function of laetrile is its effect on cancer cells. Normal cells have an enzyme, rhodanase, that inactivates the cyanide molecule of the laetrile compound. Cancer cells do not possess this enzyme. In fact, they have an enzyme, beta-glucosidase, that releases the cyanide, which then poisons the cancer cells.


The main use for laetrile is in the treatment of cancer, particularly to reduce tumor size and further spread, and to alleviate the sometimes severe pains of the cancerous process. As I stated, more well-designed research needs to be done to determine whether this compound in its natural form is effective. Other uses reported for laetrile have been in the treatment of high blood pressure and rheumatism.

Deficiency and toxicity: There are no known problems caused by not consuming this "vitamin," other than, theoretically, a deficiency could increase the likelihood of developing cancer. There are, however, concerns over toxicity, due to the cyanide within the vitamin or possibly from other metabolic effects. Usually, treatment amounts are limited to 1 gram to reduce potential side effects, which initially are most likely gastrointestinal in nature. Toxicity of this molecule must be researched further.


This nutrient is not required as far as we know; in fact, it is against the law in the United States. When used, laetrile is administered at 250?,000 mg. (1 gram) daily. Higher amounts-up to 3 grams per day-have been used, but divided into several smaller dosages, each usually limited to 1 gram. If the source is whole apricot kernels, the quantity is usually about 10?0 kernels per day; 1? cups of fresh mung bean sprouts may provide an equivalent amount. If apricot kernels are blended or pulverized, it is suggested that they be consumed immediately

Cancer Therapy:

If you do NOT have Cancer
As a preventative Dr. Krebs asserts that 7 to 10 apricot seeds per day will make it impossible to develop cancer in one's lifetime. A easy to remember... Rule of Thumb: Try to eat one apricot kernel for each 20 pound of body weight, daily. Example: 180 lb = 9 apricot seeds daily. One or two Vitamin B17 tablets ( 100 mg ) is an acceptable supplemental dosage per day. Also, if you eat three apples a day, seeds and all, the seeds in the three apples are sufficient Vitamin B17. 3 x 30 = That's about 90 apples per month.
If one is really serious about their health... We suggest: Apricot seeds ( whole food is best ) or Vitamin B17 ( 100 mg ) along with digestive enzymes with at least 3 mg of Chymotrypsin, if these proteolytic enzymes are to be used as a digestive aid the recommended dosage is 1 or 2 tablets just prior to a meal. The proteolytic enzymes should also be taken on an empty stomach, for the benefits are many. Drink plenty of room temperature high pH spring or mineral water. Finally, to maintain health, the diet should consist of 60% alkaline forming foods and 40% acid forming foods.
Balancing the pH is a major step toward well-being and greater health. The body has to have a balanced pH like most living things on earth or it does not function correctly. The alkaline level is very important because research has already proven that disease cannot survive in an alkaline state and yet they thrive in an acidic environment.

If yo have Cancer
Vitamin B17 ( laetrile - amygdalin ) 500 mg: Two ( 2 ) of these tablets taken three ( 3 ) times daily. This is nontoxic, however you may get very nauseous and have gastric upset if you start out with the full amount. The tablet size is 500 mg. If you have difficulty, the tablets may be broken up and added to soft food. You have to decide weather to have an empty stomach or not. After the initial 60 days of this amount of vitamin B17 a maintenance dose of 3 tablets per day for the following six months to a year is recommended according to the severity of the cancer. If the cancer had metastasised, take three tablets a day for life. It is in Dr. Krebs opinion ( the vitamin B17 discoverer ) to take three tablets for life even if the cancer hadn't spread.
For the apricot seeds and/or tablets ( start out with a low dosage and build up ). It is okay if you cannot handle the full dosages that we speak of - use Ginger tea to stop upsets. Some patients ( according to the severity ) take up to eighteen 500 mg tablets per day for the first month.