Coordinated approach needed to protect from arsenic exposure

Coordinated approach needed to protect from arsenic exposure
A coordinated approach is necessary for monitoring and regulating the arsenic content of foods, according to a viewpoint piece published online April 29 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

(HealthDay)—A coordinated approach is necessary for monitoring and regulating the arsenic content of foods, according to a viewpoint piece published online April 29 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

Ana Navas-Acien, M.D., Ph.D., from the Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology and Clinical Research, and Keeve E. Nachman, Ph.D., M.H.S., from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine—both in Baltimore, discuss the presence of arsenic in foods, specifically rice, , and chicken.

The authors note that there are currently few federal efforts to characterize the arsenic content and species in foods. In response to recent , the U.S. has initiated focused analyses of arsenic in specific foods. Arsenic monitoring data should be collected and standards developed for specific foods. Physicians should notify their patients about sources of and strategies for prevention. In cases of concern, urine total arsenic can be measured as a marker of exposure. In addition, regulatory agencies, , and legislative bodies have roles to play in reducing exposure. For example, FDA standards could help ensure the safety of food products. Given the insufficient evidence relating to arsenic-based drugs in animal production, the FDA should also consider limiting or banning their use. Federal or state legislation addressing dietary arsenic should also be considered.

"Protecting the public from exposure to dietary arsenic requires many coordinated measures," the authors write. "Raising public awareness is a first step toward long-term solutions that prevent dietary arsenic exposure."

More information: Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)

Related Stories

What you eat can prevent arsenic overload

date Jun 28, 2012

Millions of people worldwide are exposed to arsenic from contaminated water, and we are all exposed to arsenic via the food we eat. New research published in BioMed Central's open access journal Nutrition Journal has demons ...

Recommended for you

Will the Affordable Care Act eliminate health disparities?

date 1 hour ago

Massachusetts' health reform may be a crystal ball for researchers and policymakers in forecasting the potential impact of the Affordable Care Act. Many see the ACA as the backbone of efforts toward closing the nation's health ...

Experts question election pledges on GP access

date 12 hours ago

As the general election in the UK approaches, experts writing in The BMJ this week question whether the party promises on access to general practice are likely to be achievable.

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.