At a Glance
- Applying apple juice directly to some brands of pregnancy test can produce a false positive result.
- It does this by interacting with the enzymes in the test.
- Drinking apple juice does not affect the results of a pregnancy test.
There is a new experiment that’s all the rage across social media platforms showing how to ‘fake’ a positive pregnancy test using a number of household items – from beverages to cleaning solutions.
Now personally, I have no idea why anyone would want to ‘prank’ someone with something that can be a very sensitive matter. However, out of sheer scientific curiosity, all the research and reading across the web did make me wonder “does apple juice make pregnancy tests positive?”
How Do Pregnancy Tests Work?
A home pregnancy test is designed to detect the pregnancy hormone human chorionic gonadotropin or HCG.
Every month a woman’s ovary releases an egg. If fertilized, it will become what is known as a bioclast which travels down the fallopian tube and implants itself into the lining of the uterus between 6 and 12 days after fertilization. After implantation, the woman’s body begins producing HCG, the levels of which increase rapidly within the initial weeks of pregnancy.
Home pregnancy tests detect HCG above a certain level (between 25 and 50 mlU depending on the test brand) which would normally be achievable around the time of a missed period and therefore confirm pregnancy.
A standard home pregnancy test contains certain enzymes which, when mixed with urine, allow the strip to change color.
The urine is applied to the exposed part of the test. This initially picks up the enzymes which make the line in the first window change color (showing the test has worked). If there is HCG in the urine, this gets caught between the enzymes and then gets stuck in the second window, allowing for a second line and showing the test is positive. If there is no HCG in the urine, the urine and enzymes will pass straight through the second window, showing a negative result. (source)
Does Apple Juice Make Pregnancy Tests Positive?
There are a number of dedicated social media pages designed to help women cheat a positive test result, with apple juice being one of the top items to use.
When apple juice (as well as other beverages which seem to work also) is applied to the exposed part of the pregnancy test many women have achieved positive results during countless experiments easily found across the internet.
Realistically, it’s not saying that your apple juice is pregnant! Although there is no scientific research to date, it is most likely that the apple juice (possibly the sugar or acidity) interferes with the enzymes within the pregnancy test.
Other household items which have shown to give a positive test result include:
- Freshly squeezed lemon juice
- Soda (cola)
Note that there is no evidence to suggest that ingesting large amounts of any beverage can turn a pregnancy test positive.
When applied directly to a test, apple juice can in fact make pregnancy tests positive (depending on the brands of the test and the juice).
But before you consider this to be a wonderful pranking opportunity, just remember that millions of people experience early pregnancy loss each year which can be incredibly painful (for both men and women) and would not be considered funny.
Moreover, you may want to consider the consequences of pranking your unsuspecting partner, as their reaction could be one you don’t anticipate and actually cause the breakdown of your relationship.
Therefore, these are things worth considering before trying this at home.