Another Reason to Avoid Processed Foods

tellner

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Turns out that HFCS - High Fructose Corn Syrup - has contains mercury.

MONDAY, Jan. 26 (HealthDay News) -- Almost half of tested samples of commercial high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) contained mercury, which was also found in nearly a third of 55 popular brand-name food and beverage products where HFCS is the first- or second-highest labeled ingredient, according to two new U.S. studies.
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"Mercury is toxic in all its forms. Given how much high-fructose corn syrup is consumed by children, it could be a significant additional source of mercury never before considered. We are calling for immediate changes by industry and the [U.S. Food and Drug Administration] to help stop this avoidable mercury contamination of the food supply," said the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy's Dr. David Wallinga, a co-author of both studies.
 

Empty Hands

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To be fair, the amounts were not described in the article, and are only said to be "detectable". This could be anything from "OHMIGODYOUAREGOINGTODIE!!!!!" to "Takes 6 tons to give you a decent dose." The amounts really should be compared to another mercury containing food like tuna.
 
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tellner

tellner

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Fair enough, EH. The frightening thing is how ubiquitous HFCS is and how common detectable levels of Hg are in them. This was not the case in days past. And since the recognized safe level of Hg has been dropping, barring recent Bush era regulations that explicitly changed research data to accommodate the coal industry, it's a cause for some concern.
 

Brian R. VanCise

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You and I both Terry!
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Dagney Taggert

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Buy a juicer! Money well spent. Drink fresh vegetable juice everyday for a week. You will be shocked at how cravings for junk food go away.
 

teekin

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Fair enough, EH. The frightening thing is how ubiquitous HFCS is and how common detectable levels of Hg are in them. This was not the case in days past. And since the recognized safe level of Hg has been dropping, barring recent Bush era regulations that explicitly changed research data to accommodate the coal industry, it's a cause for some concern.


???? Excuse Me????:eek::xtrmshock WTF??
lori
 

cdunn

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I dunno. To me, this speaks to the need for proper regulation and oversight of the food supply chain. This is flat up the result of bad decision making, and the major problem here is that the bad decision maker is expected to catch and correct himself under FDA and USDA rules. Oh, yeah, there are, apparently, no less than fifteen federal government agencies involved in food regulation. They are not consistent. This is a problem. No one is ultimately responsible.

While I'm not going to go digging around in the data for evidence of Bush suppressing research, a significant portion of mercury in the air is the result of humans burning coal for energy. Wikipedia states (take with a grain of salt) about 65% of human output, and total airborne mercury is about half anthrogenic, half "natural", so it's about 1/3rd of the total mercury in the air.

In this specific case, this mercury source is not relevant - but it does accumulate over time in our bodies. Accusations against the past administration aside aside, this Mercury comes down in a number of ways, and works its way into the soil, where it is taken up by plants. It's in everything you eat at detectable levels. Vegetarian or carnivore, it gets there. Also, though, we must bear in mind, detectable levels for mercury are on the order of 0.0000000001% by weight. How much is too much? How much extra can we support against the already present background we draw in with every breath?

The other side to this? There is little to no reduction in heavy metal concentration in "organic" foods, and it is, in fact, often increased! While the linked study directly discusses cadmium and lead directly, the principles remain the same: "Organic" foods may or may not fertilized with compost consisting in part of animal wastes; animals which have been eating large amounts of food, and concentrating the toxins therein in the process of excretion, meaning that the very fertilizers used to grow the food in the first place are now sources of contamination, and the cycle repeats.
 

Makalakumu

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When you eat processed foods, the least of your problems are their mercury content.

When it comes to preservatives, fertilizers, chemicals of all sorts, you just are not eating even close to what comes from nature.

Our bodies are going to have to evolve in order to deal with that, because it ain't going to change unless you want to kill a **** load of people.
 

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