FoodFacts.com knows that our community is aware of arsenic making its way into our food supply and even our water sources. It’s been an unpleasant and sometimes heavily argued idea that has sadly been proven over the last few years. This is such a clear example of why it is so important for all of us to remain aware of what we’re consuming and how it affects our health and well-being. Today we found information on how arsenic may be affecting the population. It’s significant knowledge that we all need to understand.
A new study from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute and the National Institute of Environmental Sciences shows that chronic exposure to low to moderate levels of inorganic arsenic is associated with increased incidence of fatal and not-fatal cardiovascular disease. Inorganic arsenic in water and food (particularly rice and grain) is a major global health problem.
Research has shown that high arsenic levels in drinking water increase the risk of peripheral artery disease, coronary heart disease, stroke, and carotid atherosclerosis. However, less is known about the cardiovascular effects of low to moderate arsenic levels, an issue that affects most populations around the world.
In the United States, people living in small rural communities in the Southwest, Midwest, and Northeast are disproportionately exposed to inorganic arsenic. Researchers analyzed urine samples for 3,575 American Indian men and women living in Arizona, Oklahoma, and North and South Dakota to evaluate the prospective association of chronic low to moderate arsenic exposure with incident cardiovascular disease over almost 20 years follow-up. They found that baseline urine arsenic concentrations were prospectively associated with cardiovascular disease mortality and incidence (1,184 developed fatal and non-fatal cardiovascular disease and 439 developed fatal cardiovascular disease).
The researchers conclude that low to moderate arsenic exposure is an important risk factor for cardiovascular disease with no apparent threshold.
First it was arsenic in apple juice. Then we were told about arsenic in rice. And there can be arsenic in drinking water. FoodFacts.com will continue to keep abreast of this issue and report on any new findings. It’s important for us to remain informed and knowledgeable about our food. It’s also essential for us to understand the health implications of arsenic and other concerns so that we can manage and avoid the possible detrimental effects.