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The Death and Disease team visited York Cookery School, where Simon the chef showed us how to make sushi.


One of the most sought after types of sushi is made with fugu (or the Japanese blowfish). The downside of the Japanese blowfish is that parts of it a 200 times more poisonous than cyanide.

The poison is actually a nerve agent that stops your brain communicating with your muscles. At first, you can’t walk or talk and then over time, you can’t breathe.

But it’s particularly evil because unlike a lot of nerve agents, you’re fully conscious. It doesn’t affect your brain, so you know what’s going on all the way through to your rather grim death.

The good news is that life insurance does pay out if you die from blowfish poisoning 🙂

So, here at Death and Disease, we were wondering if you’d eat sushi made from Japanese blowfish.

An impressive 42% of people said they’d risk their lives and try fugu (Japanese blowfish). 

Amongst the brave, Catherine thinks it would be a great excuse to go to Japan again, and Carlos was inspired because it featured in a James Bond novel (SMERSH put the poison in water pistols in You Only Live Twice – Ed). Jackie loves sushi so much “she’d end it all for a rice ball”.

Billy would give it a go because if the worst happened it would be “a pretty cool thing to put on your gravestone”. We like your thinking Billy!

The more cautious included Tom, who wouldn’t risk it himself, but was keen to feed it to his wife… A variation on this theme was Mark, who would try it only if I had some first. Love you too Mark.

Tina declined because she is not a lucky person (we hope you are well insured Tina – if not, our number’s at the top of the page…)

Adrian said no because he doesn’t eat ugly fish, and Louise would rather eat marmite (which is fair enough. We are all marmite lovers here at Death and Disease – it is the first question on the interview form).

Finally, thank you BigSally from Thailand for your thoughtful entry but I think you have mis-translated the word ‘Blowfish’.

The Winner

Plucked out of the draw this week with a handy pair of chopsticks was Chelle “Wouldn’t risk it for a biscuit” Thirsk. Congratulations! Drop us an email to claim your prize. 

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