Earlier this month, pregnant mother Elizabeth Dominguez, 29, tested positive for opium during a drug test administered by a Niagara Falls hospital before going into labor. She was separated from her newborn son until officials confirmed that it was a false positive. The culprit: A poppy seed bagel. But poppy seeds aren’t the only ingredient that could show up on a toxicology screen. Next time you’re vying for a new job, headed to the doctor or even driving, plan to avoid these foods
Breads and pastries. Most baked goods are made with yeast, which ferments in the dough and produces a small amount of alcohol. It’s not enough to get you drunk, but, according to Breathalyzer manufacturer LifeSafer, the dough stuck in your teeth could be enough to register on its breath test.
Tonic. Booze isn’t the only thing to worry about in a gin and tonic. Liquor’s favorite mixer is made with small amounts of quinine, which has been known to show up in other illegal drugs such as cocaine and heroin. Testing positive for quinine can be a red flag.
Hemp seeds. Hemp seed-based products such as hemp oil, milk or a seedy granola may be perfectly legitimate, but they can contain trace amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – the psychoactive ingredient in weed. THC can linger in human fat for up to about 45 days, so its best to avoid these foods for at least a month before a scheduled screening.
Medications. Over-the-counter cough suppressants containing dextromethorphan, such as DayQuil, can give false positives for phencyclidine (PCP). The pseudoephedrine found in decongestants such as Sudafed resembles illegal amphetamines. Ibuprofen and other NSAIDS may produce false positives for THC.