April 22, 2013
A new report by medical professionals have made it clear: It's really dangerous to take the Cinnamon Challenge.
A YouTube fad that involves swallowing one spoonful of this spice without the aid of water, the number of poison control center calls about teens accepting the prank "has increased dramatically," according to the American Association of Poison Control Centers.
It rose from 51 in 2011 to 222 in 2012.
An alert on that organization's website warns that "people with asthma or other respiratory conditions are at greater risk of having this result in shortness of breath and trouble breathing."
But Dr. Steven E. Lipshultz - a pediatrics professor at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine who co-authored the new report - states that all who attempt this challenge are placing themselves in danger.
That's because cinnamon is made from tree bark and contains cellulose fibers that do not break down easily.
Stephen Pont, an Austin-based doctor and a spokesman for the American Academy of Pediatrics, echoes this point.
He says the new publishing is "a call to arms to parents and doctors to be aware of things like the cinnamon challenge" and to pay attention to what their children are viewing online.
Seriously. Just watch the girl in the video above and go make a Starbucks Chocolate Cinnamon Bread Recipe if you must use this spice.
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