It is important to remember that, like with most spices, enough is good, but more is not necessarily better. There is a natural limit to the proper number of kernels that can be safely consumed at one sitting or within a day's time. Generally that limit is the number that one would eat if he or she were also eating the whole apricot. That, of course, depends on a person's size. A large man might eat eight or nine apricots at a time before becoming full; a small woman might eat five or six; a child probably would eat but two or three; and this could be repeated three or four times a day so long as the stomach was given several hours between times to digest the last meal. A further complication is that there is a great variation between the strength of Apricot Kernels depending on their size, the tree from which they come, and the part of the world in which they are grown. We believe it is a good idea, therefore, to follow this rule:
Take no more apricot kernels than half the number you likely would eat if you also were consuming the entire fruit. Cutting the number in half, as suggested above, will provide an extra safety margin. Nevertheless, pay attention to your body's signals. Three of the signs of toxicity from too many kernels are dizziness, blurred vision, and nausea. If any of these occur, then remember how many kernels you ate at one time and simply make sure you don't repeat that experience. If the symptoms persist or if they are severe, see a physician immediately, because cyanide poisoning is a serious matter. But, really, none of this is likely to happen if you practice moderation and common sense. People who swallow a whole can of pepper or an entire bottle of aspirin should expect to become ill. All we are saying is that the same is true of Apricot Kernels.
When grinding apricot kernels in a blender, process only a half-cup at a time to avoid having them compact and become butter-like. The usual shelf life of Apricot Kernels at room temperature is eight months but, if kept under refrigeration, it is about more than a year. These kernels have been shelled by machine, and every effort has been made to make sure that the shards have been removed. No process is 100% perfect, however, so please be on the lookout for occasional small pieces of hard shell.