Can Squash Be Toxic?

Playing Is Your Squash Toxic?

Viral email posts are filled with some good and a lot of garbage! The Doctors share one which reads, "You can actually be poisoned by squash that tastes bitter! It can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and even hair loss. It is called bitter squash syndrome." The audience thinks it's a hoax but plastic surgeon expert Dr. Andrew Ordon says it's true! 

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The medical journal, JAMA Dermatology, actually published an article to discuss this case. Dermatologist expert Dr. Sonia Batra explains there are certain melons that are part of the Cucurbitaceae family, like pumpkin and squash, that can taste bitter. This was published under "toxic squash syndrome," and the email was correct in that it can cause nausea, vomiting, and even hair loss. 

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Dr. Batra says the tipoff is, if it tastes very bitter it may contain this toxin so you might want to avoid it. OB/GYN Dr. Nita Landry says, "I'm out!" in regards to eating squash, but that is not necessary, squash is still very good for you and worth having as part of your diet!

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