Arsenic Intake and Health Risk from Diet in Asia
Inorganic arsenic (InAs) is ubiquitous in the environment and has greater toxicity than do organic arsenic species. It is a proven fact based on epidemiologic studies in groundwater-contaminated regions that chronic ingestion of InAs can lead to adverse health effects. This chapter deals with InAs intake, as well as its health risk from diet in Asia. Dietary intake of InAs in contaminated regions is at least an order of magnitude higher than that in non-contaminated regions. In the contaminated region, daily intake of InAs increased not only by drinking contaminated water but also by the consumption of crops grown with contaminated water and/or by consumption of foods cooked with contaminated water. Consumption of rice is a dominant source of InAs intake in the non-contaminated regions. The mean dietary InAs intake ranges 36–1200 and 3.8–53 μg/day in contaminated and non-contaminated regions, respectively. On the basis of these data and the benchmark dose reported by the EFSA for InAs, the margin of exposure was estimated to be less than 200. Therefore, Asian people are exposed to the levels of InAs that could not be free from cancer and non-cancer risk in the contaminated and non-contaminated regions.
KeywordsDiet Inorganic arsenic Drinking water Rice Health risk
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