The Prescott Area Celiac and Gluten Free Support group met on Tuesday, November 18th at 12 noon at the Prescott Public Library Founder's Room A on the lower level. The main topic at tuesday's meeting was in regard to arsenic in rice and the information was shared by co-leader, Linda C.
The subject of arsenic in rice in the American diet has been in the news for many years. As early as 2005, Consumer Reports magazine had published articles in regard to the high amounts of arsenic that were being detected in rice. Rice is one of the most consumed foods in the world.
This is of particular interest to the gluten free community because it depends so heavily on rice for many aspects of its diet. It is the best known for those eating gluten free because of the use in rice flour, which is in practically every gluten free pre-packaged food item that those eating gluten free purchase and consume. It is also heavily relied upon as a replacement starch in pastas and on what were traditionally wheat-based side dishes.
All of that may be about to change as test results now show that some of the rice that the American public is consuming is reported to contain 10 to 20 times higher arsenic levels than the FDA allowable limit that is set even for arsenic levels in drinking water.
Of particular concern was the article in Consumer Reports from November 2012 titled, "Arsenic in Your Food". Consumer Reports has written numerous articles on this topic and you can find the articles by searching Consumer Reports Arsenic in Food online.
The newest article published by CS states even more strongly that the amount of rice we eat should be limited. The article also suggests purchasing rice that has tested lower in arsenic levels. The November 2012 article actually lists many rice products that were tested and accompanying arsenic levels. Some of the rice with the lowest arsenic levels came from California basmati rice manufactured by Lundburg farms in California.
The Southern states in the USA have some of the highest levels of arsenic in rice. Rice fields now are planted in former cotton fields that have been heavily sprayed for the cotton boll weevil. The fields had been sprayed with arsenic pesticides for decades.
It would benefit all of us to do our homework and make some decisions about what we are eating and how it impacts our health. Search "dangers of arsenic poisoning" online.
The next meeting of the Prescott Area Celiac and Gluten Free Support organization will be tuesday, December 16th at 12 noon at the Prescott Public Library.
posted by DJ