The fact that in 2018 something like this needs to be said is absurd to say the least, however, it must be done: do not eat Tide Pods! The viral “challenge” of eating a Tide Pod has gripped the internet with videos of kids gagging on, coughing, and spitting out mouthfuls of the soap appearing on various social media feeds.
The “challenge” went viral after memes were shared online about how Tide Pods were a “delicious forbidden fruit.” The joke has obviously been taken too far now that people are actually eating them and getting sick.
Almost everyone knows what Tide Pods are actually supposed to be used for (cleaning your clothes, if you really didn’t know), however the real dangers of eating what is basically pressure-packed soap is either still relatively unknown or largely ignored, even if various outlets have reported on the idiocy of the challenge.
Wired took the time to break down exactly what is in a Tide Pod, why it’s hazardous to your health, and why you shouldn’t eat it. We’ve summarized the most important points, so peep some of the harmful ingredients below and please, do not eat any more Tide Pods.
You might be thinking, “yum, alcohol” but it’s not the kind that will provide you with a buzz. This ingredient forms the film that holds all the other parts together. It is also used in the making of paper — and you wouldn’t eat paper, would you?
This stuff is a bittering agent that was added by Tide in 2015 to stop kids from eating and swallowing their products. It’s believed to be the bitterest known substance, detectable at just a few parts per million. In other words, denatonium benzoate makes Tide Pods taste bad and is there to stop things like that Tide Pod Challenge from happening.
Fatty acid salts
This is what is commonly referred to as soap and is definitely not edible.
Diethylenetriamine pentaacetate (sodium salt)
This attaches to metals and softens your wash water if it’s hard. Something that breaks down metals has no place in your mouth, let alone being swallowed by you.
While the list of harmful ingredients goes on (and you can out the full list here), it should by now be clear that humans have no business eating Tide Pods, something that street style icon Luka Sabbat wholeheartedly agreed with on Twitter.
It has got to the point that Tide has had to pay NFL star Rob Gronkowski money to tell people not to eat Tide Pods. Thankfully, at the time of writing, searching for the Tide Pod challenge yielded no results on Instagram, while YouTube has also cracked down on uploads.