New Guidelines on Rice Consumption due to Inorganic Arsenic Contamination
Consumer Reports recently published an article regarding the risks associated with the levels of arsenic in rice and rice products. Since there is not yet an FDA-mandated limit on the amount of inorganic arsenic (the more toxic form of arsenic) that is present in our food, the guidelines published by Consumer Reports provide some of the only recommendations available to the public on what foods are higher and lower in inorganic arsenic, and how much is safe to eat. Decreasing the risk of exposure to this carcinogenic contaminant is especially important for infants, children, and those following a gluten-free diet.
The food safety experts from Consumer Reports assigned a point value to different types of rice and rice foods, recommending no more than 7 points per week. For example, adults should eat no more than a 1/2 cup (uncooked) of rice per week, except for white Basmati (from California, India, or Pakistan) or sushi rice (from the US). These two types of rice have lower levels of inorganic arsenic but they still recommend no more than one cup per week. While infants should consume no more than 1/4 cup of rice cereal per day and rice cakes should be limited to 1-3 per week. For more recommendations, read the full article online.