Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The Fruit Of Knowledge

An apple a day is supposed to keep the doctor away. But not Doctor Oz. He's all over that bad apple. He wants us to know that red delicious is killing our children. On his Fox show last Wednesday, he let us know that testing by a New Jersey lab had found what he suggested were troubling levels of arsenic in many brands of juice. I'm not a doctor. Nor do I play one on TV. But I am immediately "troubled" by the words "arsenic" and "juice" appearing in the same sentence. The images in my mind of my young son downing a bottle of yummy juice with a big grin on his face, just before his eyes roll back up in his head and starts foaming at the mouth.
Hold on. Put down the phone. No need to call the paramedics or Child Protective Services. As it turns out, the Food and Drug Administration wants us to know that there is no need to panic. "There is no evidence of any public health risk from drinking these juices. And FDA has been testing them for years," our government assures us. It turns out that arsenic is naturally present in water, air, food and soil in two forms : organic and inorganic. According to the FDA, organic arsenic passes through the body quickly and is essentially harmless. Inorganic arsenic, the type found in pesticides, can be toxic and may pose a cancer risk if consumed at high levels or over a long period. This was not a bit of information that Doctor Oz included in his show. Instead, his website tells us, "American apple juice is made from apple concentrate, 60 percent of which is imported from China. Other countries may use pesticides that contain arsenic, a heavy metal known to cause cancer." Cancer? China? Children? Evil, plain and simple.
Or not. Where is Oprah when you need her?

1 comment:

Mrs. Id said...

We always used to eat apple seeds to "build up a tolerance to arsenic."