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Arsenic in Apple Juice: What Should I Do?

Before you toss that new jug of apple juice, be sure to consider the following:

One Study is Never Enough

Although this information may alerted you to the world of food safety, don’t let it be the only study you use to build a case against apple juice. The FDA really has been testing juices for a long time and that shouldn’t be discounted with just a few studies.

Using Common Sense is Important

The only sure thing in nutrition science is that there never really is a sure thing! Our knowledge and understanding of nutrition is constantly evolving and this can be down-right confusing. Use common sense when reviewing new health claims or shocking study results. By keeping a level head you can bypass mass food panic if you’ll take the time to identify which truths lie behind the claims. Often a little bit of truth exists on both sides of the story and common sense may be your best tool in properly identifying where that truth exists.

Thinking In Extremes Can Also Help

When common sense still leaves you questioning which side of a nutritional argument you land on, thinking in extremes may also help you identify the truth behind each claim.

  • Extreme scenario #1: The FDA is correct and the arsenic levels in apple juice are perfectly safe for long-term consumption.
  • Extreme scenario #2: Dr. Oz is correct and the arsenic levels in apple juice are higher than we knew.
  • Bottom line: “Although the FDA frequently tests apple juice and it is likely safe for long-term consumption, perhaps I should cut back on the amount of apple juice I provide to my kids on a daily basis.” By thinking in extremes, you can actually come to a pretty reasonable response.

Maybe We Should Rethink Our Drink

Whether this study is accurate or not, it provides us with the perfect opportunity to re-evaluate the frequency in which we provide our children juice. Although most children love juice, it’s not really something they should be getting more than once or twice a day. Juice is high in sugar, low in fiber, and full of calories that children could consume elsewhere. Instead, offer your children water frequently throughout the day to keep them hydrated and incorporate whole fruits instead of fruit juice when you can. Not only will this allow your child to get more of their calories from nutritionally dense foods, but will also promote a varied diet that can help your child eat well for a lifetime.

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Read more: Diet & Nutrition, General Health, Health, , , , ,

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9:28AM PST on Jan 13, 2014

Choose a fresh apple over apply juice.

9:01PM PDT on Sep 30, 2012

There's not arsenic in the seeds, it's cyanide...... What kind of certified dietician doesn't know that? And a little seed pulp has all kinds of good fruit oils to help protect those that ingest the seeds so we, and the horses and the bears can poop most of the seeds out and plant more little apple trees.

The cyanide of concern is from Chinese apples that are grown on very questionable soils with questionable farming practices....I'm sure not going to drink something that's squished in china that they say is apple dogs almost died from eating "wholesome American made" kibble that contained poison that they say was rice.... And we sure didn't know the crap they listed as brown rice was swill from china...

. Why are gerber and motts buying apples or some sort of "concentrate" from china...that because its yellow and smells sweet, we'll assume is apple juice concentrate? If we all had to really grow our own apples and then juice them.. We'd treasure the commodity and wouldn't treat it like the sugar water crap that w've come to know.....

12:34AM PST on Dec 3, 2011

Thanks for the article.

6:14PM PDT on Oct 2, 2011

How much would a person have to drink for it to be fatal? Does anyone drink that much?

4:40PM PDT on Sep 30, 2011

Christa's point about seeds in the juicing process makes logical sense to me and might be a reason to juice (post-seed removal) at home. It also would be a reason eating apples rather than drinking apple juice is healthier (beyond the density issue). If the alleged amount of arsenic cannot be fully accounted for by juiced seeds, however, wouldn't that mean that unjuiced apples also would contain arsenic?

5:46AM PDT on Sep 29, 2011

There has always been arsenic in seeds and I thought a tiny bit was good for you as it could kill bad cells.
However, if the ppm are getting dangerously high, then I would beware. And I would heed the part about apples from China. You should know by now they don't care what they have in their food.
Ask another chemist, but to say "organic arsenic", is a joke in my opinion. I am even leery of organic and inorganic compounds with arsenic in them.

8:42AM PDT on Sep 28, 2011

Many thanks to Dr. Oz! At least he got the message out before he was 'threatened', and had to backpedal. EWG has had apples on the most polluted lists for a long time. I just don't drink the stuff that comes in plastic bottles, no matter what the 'flavor'.

I agree with all here who say make your own!

8:15AM PDT on Sep 24, 2011

Apple seeds do naturally contain arsenic, they put the whole apple seeds and all into the machine, if you could see how things are produced you would not eat or drink them.
Buy organic apples, take out the seeds and make your own juice or better still drink water. Do you get your 8 glasses (64 ounces) of water daily?
I agree 100% with Linda Chambre's comments.

11:39AM PDT on Sep 23, 2011


3:19PM PDT on Sep 22, 2011

FDA=bad people! You never know when they're lying. They're probably not drinking the apple juice because they know the truth! I'm just thinking to the extreme.... don't mind me.

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