Almonds are an acquainted type of nut. They can be sweet or bitter, dependent on the type of tree that produces them. Sweet almond is produced from one type of almond tree (Prunus amygdalus var. dulcis) and does not contain poisonous chemicals. Bitter almond comes from a different type of almond tree (Prunus amygdalus var. amara) and does contain toxic chemicals.
Despite serious safety concerns, people make medicine from the center (kernel) of the bitter almond. It is used for spasms, pain, cough, and itch.
“Bitter almond” volatile oils can also be produced from other related fruit kernels including apricot (Prunus armeniaca), peach (Prunus persica), and plum (Prunus domestica). Similar to bitter almond, these volatile oils are considered poisonous.