You might of heard that local water supplies are often contaminated with arsenic or maybe you’re familiar with the concerning levels of arsenic found in grains of rice. But rice flour arsenic levels are often overlooked. Recent research has revealed that rice flour can be just as contaminated with arsenic as un-milled grains of rice, but removing the arsenic from rice flour is not something that can be easily done by consumers.
According to Consumer Reports, rice flour arsenic levels may be as high as 5.5 micrograms per serving. Although arsenic is a naturally occurring mineral, modern agricultural practices have resulted in an increased amount of arsenic in the soil and water supplies. Arsenic can be found in many grains, vegetables, and fruits, but rice is particularly good at absorbing it. It may come as a surprise, but brown rice and organic brown rice often have even higher levels of arsenic than white rice. The reason for the higher levels of arsenic in brown rice is that the hull is particularly good at absorbing heavy metals. Arsenic may be natural, but that doesn’t mean that it’s healthy. Arsenic is a known carcinogen and may cause problems for children later in life.
Rice flour arsenic is sometimes removed by manufacturers but not always. Some companies, like Nature’s One use an extraction process to remove much of the arsenic from their rice products but not all of them do. Fortunately there are a number of reports that list the amount of arsenic contained in rice flour and other rice products. Rice flour arsenic levels generally correspond with the arsenic levels found in white or brown un-milled rice.
Rice flour arsenic best avoided by limited consumption. Limited consumption of arsenic is especially important for infants and children, but adults should limit their arsenic consumption too. Keep your rice flour consumption to one serving per day or less, unless you know that it was processed to remove arsenic. Unlike rice flour, un-milled rice can be rinsed and boiled like pasta to remove much of the arsenic content.
Originally posted 2013-11-19 14:21:44.