Navigation Links
Arsenic Might Be Found in Some Organic Foods: Study
Date:2/16/2012

By Denise Mann
HealthDay Reporter

THURSDAY, Feb. 16 (HealthDay News) -- A sweetener used in many organic foods may be a hidden source of arsenic, new research suggests.

Researchers at Dartmouth College also note that the sweetener, organic brown rice syrup, is found in some infant formulas. Their report appears in the Feb. 16 issue of Environmental Health Perspectives.

Arsenic is a natural element that can contaminate groundwater. As the Dartmouth team explained, rice may be particularly prone to contamination because it pulls in arsenic from soil. There are no federal limits currently set for arsenic levels in food.

Study author Dr. Brian Jackson, director of the Trace Element Analysis Core Facility at Dartmouth, set out to determine the concentrations of arsenic in commercial food products containing organic brown rice syrup, including infant formula, cereal/energy bars and high-energy foods used by athletes. Jackson and his colleagues bought commercial food products containing organic brown rice syrup and compared them with similar products that did not have rice syrup in them.

In all, 17 infant formulas, 29 cereal bars and three energy shots were all purchased from local stores in the Hanover, N.H., area.

Of the 17 infant milk formulas tested, two had listed organic brown rice syrup as the primary ingredient. These two formulas, one dairy-based and one soy-based, had arsenic levels that were more than 20 times greater than the other formulas, the researchers found.

One of the infant formulas had a total arsenic concentration that was six times the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's safe drinking water limit of 10 parts per billion (ppb) for total arsenic. The amount of inorganic arsenic, the most toxic form, averaged 8.6 parts ppb for the dairy-based formula and 21.4 ppb for the soy formula, the study said.

Cereal bars and high-energy foods using organic brown rice syrup also had higher arsenic concentrations than those without the syrup, the study showed.

"The baby formula findings are concerning," Jackson said. Infants and people who eat gluten-free diets, which are largely rice-based, are most at risk for consuming too much arsenic via food, he explained, while "the risk for the occasional cereal bar eater is low."

Efforts by HealthDay to reach the Organic Trade Association for comment were unsuccessful.

This isn't the first time arsenic levels in foods have made the headlines.

Dr. Mehmet Oz, host of "The Dr. Oz Show," caused a public health stir in 2011 when he reported that roughly one-third of apple juice samples he'd tested had arsenic levels exceeding 10 parts per billion, the limit for drinking water. At first, Oz was criticized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, but his findings were later confirmed by a Consumer Reports study that showed many apple and grape juice samples were tainted with arsenic.

What exactly are the health risks with arsenic?

"All we can fall back on is what we know about exposure through drinking water; risk of certain cancers or heart disease are slightly elevated in drinking water with a certain level of arsenic," Jackson said. "Moms should know that these rice-based formulas may contain arsenic and should limit exposure. Look at the ingredients when you purchase formula."

Connie Diekman, director of university nutrition at Washington University in St. Louis, said consumers shouldn't panic over the Dartmouth findings.

"As a registered dietitian, I would encourage consumers to not worry about this study, but to use it as a reminder that foods that grow in soil are growing with a wide variety of chemicals, both those found naturally in the soil and those that may be there from use of chemicals to foster growth," she said. "Whether the amount of any one chemical is enough to worry about is still a question that needs better research. Focusing on single foods as 'dangerous' or 'harmful' ignores how those foods impact the whole diet.

"Whether organic foods contain more arsenic, or other minerals, than conventional foods is hard to estimate, but this study does remind us that organic is not necessarily equal with healthier/better for you/safe from harm," she added. "Ask a registered dietitian to help decipher new studies, and how those studies translate to their individual eating goals."

More information

Learn more about arsenic in foods and drinks at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

SOURCES: Brian Jackson, Ph.D., director, Trace Element Analysis Core Facility, Dartmouth College, Hanover, N.H.; Connie Diekman, director, university nutrition, Washington University, St. Louis; Feb. 16, 2012, Environmental Health Perspectives


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Study Sees Rice as Source of Arsenic Exposure
2. Arsenic Detected in Apple, Grape Juice Samples
3. Natural processes can limit spread of arsenic in water, says study
4. Arsenic-Containing Poultry Drug Suspended From Market
5. Researcher targets gene regulators on link between arsenic, cancer
6. Arsenic shows promise as cancer treatment, Stanford study finds
7. New study links 1 in 5 deaths in Bangladesh to arsenic in the drinking water
8. Deadly effect of arsenic in drinking water measured in massive study
9. Scientists offer solutions to arsenic groundwater poisoning in southern Asia
10. Arsenic exposure activates an oncogenic signaling pathway; leads to increased cancer risk
11. Genome Map Might Help Save Tasmanian Devil From Extinction
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Arsenic Might Be Found in Some Organic Foods: Study
(Date:3/24/2017)... NY (PRWEB) , ... March 24, 2017 , ... ... scale; from third world countries to hospitals in the United States, it’s a ... conversation on the current obstacles facing infection prevention and offers strategies for the ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... ... March 24, 2017 , ... According to a new study by NCPA ... does not obey the rules Congress has directed the CBO to follow. The CBO ... reform would restore. Yet, it estimates a reduction in employer-based coverage due to the ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... , ... March 24, 2017 , ... ... planning, and related services to families and business owners across eastern Michigan, is ... feeding regional families struggling with financial difficulties. , The Oxford/Orion FISH Food Pantry ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... , ... March 24, 2017 , ... ... Society (ONS) wanted to create a communications platform that positions them as the ... Elliance and ONS reinvented their online publication as an always-on, always-fresh news, views ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... Westchester County, NY (PRWEB) , ... March 24, 2017 , ... ... in Somers and White Plains, N.Y., is pleased to announce Westchester resident Lauren C. ... as a law clerk for the firm, will concentrate her practice in elder law, ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:3/24/2017)...   The Accreditation Council for Medical Affairs ... the pharmaceutical industry has appointed Dr. Jane ... formed scientific advisory board. Dr. Chin will be ... ever medical affairs think tank within the pharmaceutical ... ACMA, please visit  www.medicalaffairsspecialist.org .  Connect with ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... , Mar. 24, 2017 Research and Markets ... Pipeline Analysis, 2016" report to their offering. ... The IPF pipeline is very strong with a ... Merck & Co., Inc., Biogen and Sanofi are involved in the development ... of which one is in Phase III stage, 15 are in Phase ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... March 24, 2017 Today Stock-Callers.com have ... which are: Neovasc Inc. (NASDAQ: NVCN), Hologic Inc. (NASDAQ: HOLX), ... SSH ). These companies are part of the ... on Thursday, March 23 rd , 2017, with the NYSE ... of health care companies in the S&P 500 were down ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: