Recently, there has been a rather damning accusation made against one of our favorite ingredients, and though the crisis has been averted by the same local authorities that brought the issue up as clear and presently delicious danger, the delightful twists and turns of this accusation has led us to examine the question at hand: is it safe to eat poppy seeds?
Truth be told, this concern has been spinning for years before the sudden panic attack caused in Malaysia. The fact of the matter is, morphine does derive from poppy seeds, which in turn is used to create heroine. However, the amount substantial to providing the same narcotic drugs side effects as ingesting morphine is far and beyond the quantity found in a plate of bagels, or even a whole lemon poppy seed cake. There have been many studies made regarding this matter, and it has been proven that the general conjecture of seeds required to cause the same results as a dose of morphine would be a whopping 40grams, granted the most potent poppy seeds (which happens to be the Spanish poppy seeds) were used.
We’re pretty sure your stomach would be screaming for mercy before you manage to indulge in that many products sprinkled with these babies.
So no, you won’t get high just by having a light and fluffy slice of lemon poppy seed cake, neither will you be jumping off buildings from the lick of a freshly baked bagel. Still, it needs to be noted that a larger amount of poppy seeds can test positive for morphine if a drug test was administered, as proven by the good, duct-tape lovin’ guys of Mythbusters (NOTE: They purposefully force-fed themselves 2 bags of bagels and a whole cake for the purpose of research, which we highly do not recommend if you’d like to maintain that hot bod). But don’t fret; since this is not a new matter, stronger tests will generally confirm that the level of opiate substances detected is NOT caused by abusive drug usage, but in fact, the desire for oh-so-awesome poppy seed Bundt cakes.
Instead of looking at poppy seeds as if they were a bunch of seedy criminals, let’s look at the benefits of eating them. Besides being extremely rich in oleic acid, a mono-unsaturated fatty acid that assists in maintaining good cholesterol levels, the seeds are an excellent source of B-complex vitamins, such as thiamin, pantothenic acid, riboflavin, niacin, and folic acid. Poppy seeds also contain minerals like iron, copper, calcium, potassium, manganese, zinc, and magnesium, all of which pretty much sums up a dose of good health.
We’re quite horrible with calculations, so you do the math and ponder the facts, while we savor a slice of fragrant, delectable, poppy seed cake.