Arsenic in apple juice!

Apple juice

This is coming up again?! I can’t tell you how many times this issue has been brought up over the years. My senior paper in college was about contamination of apple juice so I find myself explaining the details to my friends over and over again.

However, this time there has been changes at the FDA!

As I mentioned in my earlier post on arsenic in rice, arsenic is found in nature, including in the soil which is how it ends up in your produce. It’s always been there at some level. There is organic arsenic that usually flows through the body with no ill effect, and then there is inorganic arsenic found in pesticides that can cause cancer and other health risks. Higher levels are found from produce grown overseas where growing practices are not as regulated.

The FDA had little concern with the levels of arsenic in produce because it was so low and there was no medical proof that is was an issue. The public, on the other hand, had great concern pushing the point that it’s usually the one juice given to babies. The belief is that levels of arsenic build up faster in children because of their size and the higher amount of juice they drink.

This debate has come up every 10 years and the last time the FDA addressed it was in 2008 by reducing the standards to 23 parts per billion. A couple years ago Dr. Oz brought it up again, and the FDA is now in the process of reducing the standard again to 10 parts per billion where the standard for bottled water is currently set. Just so you are aware, the amount of juice tested that came up over 10 parts per billion was only 5%. If you read as many papers as I have on contaminants in food, that’s a pretty low percentage. I don’t want to shock you but there are far more concerning contaminants in your food, you just don’t hear about it.

So….now that I may have scared you, let’s talk about what you can do to reduce your risk of food contamination…….

I can’t say it enough… buy your food closest to it’s natural source. When you buy processed food, you don’t know what the ingredients are or where they came from. Buy your food locally and buy organic so you know there are no pesticides used. Many apple juice companies buy juices from overseas where growing practices are not as regulated. And finally, eat and drink a variety of foods and beverages to avoid building up of one type of chemical. It’s easier for the body to eliminate small doses of multiple types of toxins. Even Dr. Oz when he brought up the apple juice issue said that you shouldn’t be feeding your baby a lot of apple juice. It contain too much sugar, even though it’s natural.

There is a great farmers market close by my house. They sell great freshly pressed organic apple juice. I think I’ll go buy some today with no fear of arsenic.