Friday, 10 February 2017

Arsenic in Rice

This long standing problem has been mentioned everywhere on the internet for quite a few years now. I had vaguely heard something but forgotten it. Not anymore!

Trust Me I'm A Doctor on BBC2 (available on the bbciplayer) this week, brought it to the fore again - see here.

How much you eat per week and how you cook the rice makes a difference to how much you ingest whilst eating - see the article. We normally cook rice in lots of water but will now soak it overnight, rinse then cook in lots of water.

What about rice already cooked or those in pack up meals such as microwavable meals. You have no control over how that rice has been treated before you eat it.

However, if you eat gluten free, rice is usually one of the first ingredients in a huge range of the products and the contents don't tell you how much! Even if you eat pasta as an alternative to rice, quite a lot of pasta products also have rice as their first ingredient.

Most recipes for home baking also use quite high levels of rice (in particular brown rice flour)  products and that is also of concern to us.

One of the best articles I have found online to help substitube rice flours can be found here.

An article that I use a lot and have created my own chart from can be found here.
Herewith my chart created from her page. As it is a screen shot, it is a little blurred but you could always type it out for yourself and then print it:
  Have a great weekend folks and stay safe in the coming wintry weather.


  1. Hi, I'm in the States, and what we've learned is that rice in this country has traditionally been grown on land that 100 yrs ago cotton was grown on. Arsenic spray was used to control the boll weavil pest on cotton, and thus the arsenic remains in the soil to this day. The states that grew the most cotton are Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas, and California, and probably the Carolinas as well. As an aside, we don't know what was grown in other countries before rice on individual fields...Some doctors here stopped suggesting rice cereals for young children as there is no safe amount of arsenic for humans. I'm trying to go gluten free for digestive issues, and am struggling with this issue too. Have been using quinoa in it's place, but am not that fond of it. Best regards, ldc

    1. Some of these alternatives might be useful. I'm not keen on quinoa either.


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