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Dietary arsenic intakes in the United States: FDA Total Diet Study, September 1991-December 1996

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The FDA has conducted the Total Dietary Study (TDS), a yearly market basket programme, since 1961. It is designed to monitor the levels of toxic chemical contaminants (pesticide residues, industrial and elemental contaminants) and essential nutrients in the US food supply. It also provides information on trends in dietary concentrations and exposures for the general population. Foods are collected from retail stores once a year from each of four geographic areas of the US and are analysed either after preparation/cooking or as ready-to-eat. The latest TDS (1991-1997) data show that arsenic (inorganic and organic, 0.03ppm) was found in 63 (24%) of the 261-264 foods/mixed dishes analysed. The highest concentration was found in seafood, followed by rice/rice cereal, mushrooms, and poultry. Based on the United States Department of Agriculture's 1987-1988 Nationwide Food Consumption Survey, the estimated daily total arsenic average intakes, in mu g/day, are: 2 for infants, 23 for toddlers, 20 for 6-year-old children, 13 for 10-yearold children, 15 for 14-16-year-old boys, 21 for 14-16-year-old girls, 57 for 25-30-year-old men, 28 for 25-30-year-old women, 47 for 40-45-year-old men, 37 for 40-45-year-old women, 92 for 60-65-year-old men, 72 for 60-65-year-old women, 69 for 70-year-old men, and 42 for 70-year-old women. Of the estimated total arsenic intakes for infants, 42% arise from seafood and 31% from rice/rice cereals. Of the estimated total arsenic intakes, seafood contributes 76-90% for children (2-10-year olds), 79-85% for 14-16-year olds, and 89-96% for adults (25-30-year olds); rice/rice cereals contributes 4-8% for children, 8% for 14-16-year olds, and 1-4% for adults (25-30-year olds).


Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/026520399283759

Publication date: November 1, 1999

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