Fruit pectin (also known under brand names like Sure-Jell) is a naturally occurring fiber in fruits used as a thickener in cooking and baking, and in medicines, as well as in home remedies from treatments for mouth ulcers to diabetes and GERD.
It is also used as a home remedy to remove traces of marijuana and its metabolites from urine samples in urine drug testing.
A package of fruit pectin such as Sure-Jell, which is usually less than five dollars a box, and water
The method for this home remedy consists of dissolving the fruit pectin in water and consuming it in the hours before a urine drug screen, then drinking a large quantity of water afterwards.
Pectin is a fiber, so consuming a large quantity of it can lead to gastrointestinal distress, including, but not limited to gas, bloating, and constipation.
Drinking large amounts of water at one time puts one at risk for both water intoxication and hyponatremia, a condition in which results from the rapid intake of water, which causes the body’s electrolytes to become unbalanced, and can result in nausea, vomiting, confusion, fatigue, irritability, muscle spasms, and seizures. If not treated, these conditions can result in irregular heartbeat, the collection of fluid in the lungs, and can even lead to coma or death. These conditions are more likely to occur when large amounts of water are consumed over a short span of time.
Pectin may interact with certain medications such as antibiotics, heart medications such as Digoxin, and cholesterol medication such as Lovastatin.
There are two schools of thought for this method, one idea is that the pectin binds to the THC metabolites and flushes them out of your system. The second idea is that the pectin masks the metabolites. There’s no scientific evidence that proves pectin can flush out or mask THC metabolites from your urine.
This myth may stem from the fact that drinking pectin has been scientifically proven to increase the secretion of harmful substances such as lead, cadmium and arsenic from your body; however, there is no scientific evidence that this process, known as chelation, would have any impact on THC metabolites.
Any cure that involves drinking a large amounts of water is going to put you at risk of failing the specimen validity screening for dilution. Another issue is that the amount of water you need to drink varies greatly amongst the different methods found, leaving the ratio of water and fruit pectin, and the amount of water that you need to drink afterwards up to pure speculation.
Although fruit pectin is a fairly harmless ingredient, the fact that you have to consume large quantities of water with it, in a short span of time, puts you at risk not only for developing hyponatremia, but also for failing a specimen validity test for dilution.
Those who are taking heart or cholesterol medications, as well as those taking antibiotics, should avoid consuming fruit pectin. Fruit pectin has valuable health benefits, such as the ability to increase your body’s rate of heavy metal excretion, but this does not translate into an ability to increase your body’s rate of THC metabolite excretion.