Eating too much rice with your meals could prove fatal in the long run, experts say.
Researchers at two universities in Manchester say prolonged exposure to low-levels of inorganic arsenic in the dinnertime favourite can be linked to health problems such as cancers and cardiovascular diseases.
The team from the University of Manchester and University of Salford have been exploring a possible link, with their findings recently published in the Science of the Total Environment journal.
Their results show that once the major factors known to contribute to cardiovascular disease ave been accounted for, there is a significant association between elevated cardiovascular mortality and the consumption of inorganic arsenic bearing rice, the Mirror reports.
Professor David Polya from The University of Manchester said: “The type of study undertaken, an ecological study, has many limitations, but is a relatively inexpensive way of determining if there is plausible link between increased consumption of inorganic arsenic bearing rice and increased risk of cardiovascular disease.
The study suggests that the highest 25 percent of rice consumers in England and Wales may plausibly be at greater risks of cardiovascular mortality due to inorganic arsenic exposure compared to the lowest 25 percent of rice consumers.
He added: “The modelled increased risk is around six percent (with a confidence interval for this figure of two percent to 11 percent).
“The increased risk modelled might also reflect in part a combination of the susceptibility, behaviours and treatment of those communities in England and Wales with relatively high rice diets.”
The researchers stressed more robust research is still needed to confirm these findings.
Experts haven’t warned people to stop eating rice, but instead suggest consuming different types of rice, which are known to contain less inorganic arsenic – such as basmati and polished rice.
As well as this, they recommend eating a balanced variety of staples, not just predominantly rice.