Of all the stupid ways to die...
January 24, 2007 9:58 AM   Subscribe

I just accidentally ate part of a metallic-looking mayonnaise packet. Am I going to die?

I was in a hurry, it was in a sandwich, you know the rest. It was a corner torn off from the packet. Should I not worry at all? Should I go to the emergency room? Am I overreacting and will nothing at all happen?

I read about some kids eating magnets and the magnets sticking together and killing them. If an adult (myself, for example) eats a slight little piece of metal, is it going to tear up my insides?
posted by ostranenie to Food & Drink (25 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
No, it'll find its own way out of you.
posted by parmanparman at 10:00 AM on January 24, 2007

I can remember eating a coin once as a kid and I was okay. (well at least I think I am). Was this the entire packet or just a part?
posted by thetenthstory at 10:02 AM on January 24, 2007

I once ate a small bit of tinfoil that wound up in my sandwich and I didn't die.
posted by tastybrains at 10:02 AM on January 24, 2007


Wait, no.
posted by Aquaman at 10:03 AM on January 24, 2007 [4 favorites]

You just won't digest it and it will be harmlessly expelled via normal waste disposal procedures. :) I am assuming you didn't eat the ENTIRE packet, of course.
posted by smallerdemon at 10:03 AM on January 24, 2007

O. my b. It was a corner. You should be okay. But I am no doctor.
posted by thetenthstory at 10:03 AM on January 24, 2007

(triple - quadurple jix?)
posted by thetenthstory at 10:04 AM on January 24, 2007

If you are very, very, very, very concerned you could do a scatological inventory. If you haven't accounted for it by the end of the week you might want to elevate the threat level posed by this missing metalic corner. Otherwise, I don't think the mayonaise people would package their food product in a material that poses any danger to your body.
posted by bkeene12 at 10:09 AM on January 24, 2007 [1 favorite]

If you become very concerned you can call a Poison Control center. They are trained with knowing what's toxic and what to do about it.

American Association of Poison Control Centers:

(I'd link the web site but there is singing on the home page... ugh.)
posted by Ookseer at 10:18 AM on January 24, 2007

Assuming the small bit of packaging wasn't particularly sharp, you are probably in more danger from the mayonnaise than from the packaging.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 10:20 AM on January 24, 2007

One upon a time, Michel Lotito ate an airplane, piece by piece. I suspect that a tiny corner of metalic-looking food-grade plastic is probably gonna be just fine.
posted by IvyMike at 10:33 AM on January 24, 2007

My friend swallowed a Dr. Pepper soda can tab. She's fine, the thing vanished utterly, and she got a lot of free Dr. Pepper after inquiring with the company about what to do. Want some free mayo?
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 10:43 AM on January 24, 2007

Yeah, yeah, you'll be fine. Now...what's this about eating magnets and having them stick together and kill you?
posted by gnomeloaf at 10:53 AM on January 24, 2007

In a few days, unbeknownst to you, you will poo it out. The End!

(Kids are constantly chewing on little bits of tinfoil and stuff; it was a mortal danger I think it'd be slightly better publicized.)

If it was soft and small enough for you to not notice it while you were chewing, then it probably isn't big enough to gouge out your insides and make you die of internal bleeding. (That is what you're imagining, isn't it?) If it was a poisonous or toxic material, then it wouldn't be used to package food.

posted by Kololo at 10:53 AM on January 24, 2007

I don't think the packets of mayo are actual metal anyway. Metallic looking plastic, maybe.
posted by jerseygirl at 11:02 AM on January 24, 2007

I ate small rocks as a kid and never suffered any damage that I know of. Fear not.

*marks this thread down as excellent example of why "Best Answer" should not be used as a serious metric*
posted by languagehat at 11:16 AM on January 24, 2007

The magnets are a danger because if they're swallowed separately, they can pinch a bit of (for example) intestinal tissue when they do get close together in their journey. The pinched tissue doesn't get blood so it dies, causing gangrene (or necrotization or whatever they call it when you've got dead tissue inside you.)

I have no idea where I heard that, but it seems plausible.
posted by contraption at 11:18 AM on January 24, 2007

One way to think about this is: Have you heard of a mass epidemic of illness and death caused by people swallowing condiment wrappers? Because it probably happens a few thousand times a day, and if you haven't heard of it, it's probably probably not a big deal.

Some logic goes for infants eating Play-Doh. You really don't need to investigate whether it's toxic -- kids have been eating Play-Doh for decades with no ill effects.
posted by pardonyou? at 11:19 AM on January 24, 2007

more about magnet swallowing
posted by contraption at 11:21 AM on January 24, 2007

Yes. But not eating a corner of a mayo packet.
posted by chairface at 1:27 PM on January 24, 2007

Am I going to die?


Sooner or later, that is.
posted by sour cream at 2:21 PM on January 24, 2007

I would be more worried about the mayonnaise you ingested. Do you realize how much fat, cholesterol, and calories that crap has?

I would feel better about eating the wrapper!
posted by verevi at 4:04 PM on January 24, 2007

Did a squirrel happen to get to it first?
posted by Clyde Mnestra at 5:00 PM on January 24, 2007 [1 favorite]

No. It will come out the other side just fine. No worries!
posted by PetiePal at 8:37 AM on January 25, 2007

My cat ate an entire packet of Chick-Fil-A's salad dressing. I mean the packet itself. He threw it up the next day. The whole fucking packet. He's fine. If that didn't hurt him, a freaking corner of a packet isn't going to hurt an adult.

But hey, don't swallow any gum, it takes 7 years to digest. And for goodness sake, don't swallow any watermelon seeds, or you'll grow a little watermelon baby!
posted by jesirose at 9:37 AM on January 25, 2007

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