It’s a theory that has been circulating for decades, and now, the Pentagon confirms it: Eating poppy seeds can lead to a false reading in a drug test.
All through your college years you may have heard that you should not eat poppy seeds if you are going to be drug tested because the poppy seeds contain codeine and could make it appear that you have been using illicit drugs.
Undersecretary of Defense for personnel and readiness Gil Cisneros recently sent a memo to all U.S. Armed Forces saying military units should take a second look at drug tests given to troops in 2019 to make sure they are accurate because eating something as innocuous as a bagel and some other foods have a higher trace of codeine than previously thought. He says those foods should be avoided if a drug test is scheduled for the near future.
Those foods can leave a higher concentration of codeine in urine which could be mis-read depending on the time the test is taken in relation to the time the poppy seeds are eaten.