Arsenic in Rice?

First I read a headline and then I read the story. Pregnant women should watch out if they eat too much rice because of high arsenic levels in the rice.  That is scary!

Arsenic is a heavy metal, what is it doing in our rice?

Unfortunately, arsenic is in a lot of food that we ingest.  Rice isn’t the only food we have to watch out for, as a matter of fact, let’s say rice is tested and it comes in at a number that researchers are using- 26 parts per million.  Now let’s compare that to something else we use a lot – Apple Juice.  A very famous apple juice brand in the US was tested a couple of years ago at 55 ppm.

There are apparently two types of arsenic- organic and inorganic.  One is environmental and the other obviously isn’t.  Arsenic is used in smelting and wood preservatives and glass making.  It’s in pesticides and metals.

The organic arsenic is in our food and in our water.  That means that any kind of seafood we eat also has high levels of arsenic in it.

Arsenic is pretty dangerous to humans though, so too much of it needs to be removed from our systems.  That is the reason pregnant women are being advised to be cautious about ingesting too much.  If a healthy human being can ingest it and excrete it in a day or so then it’s sort of a bad thing that your body can handle- but developing babies probably shouldn’t be exposed to heavy metals at least not if we can help it.




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