Are High Levels of Arsenic in Foods Dangerous?

Study shows brown rice syrup contains arsenic levels that may be harmful.
2:53 | 02/16/12

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Transcript for Are High Levels of Arsenic in Foods Dangerous?
Surprisingly high levels of arsenic hiding in food including brown rice organic formula for toddlers. The new study is causing a lot of confusion is this cause for real alarm and what should consumers do. ABC's doctor Richard -- or breaks it down. First it was arsenic in apple Jews now it's showing up in toddler formula. The Dartmouth researchers tested baby formulas and -- babies only organic toddler Darian -- Contains six times more arsenic than what the FDA says is safe in drinking war. The researchers also found -- in many energy bars the main culprit arsenic in one of the main ingredients brown rice Europe. Which is increasingly used as a sweetener. To replace high fructose corn syrup is also unfortunately -- and arsenic levels. High but is it dangerous arsenic is found in a lot of foods and tiny amounts it can be natural. But he can also be a result of -- things like pesticides. Long term exposure to high doses can cause a myriad of health problems everything from heart and liver damage to cancers of the bladder -- and -- But for adults at the levels found today it's not considered a danger in adult would have to eat three of those energy bars a day every day. Just to Begin to exceed what's considered safe but infants and children are different story. With developing brains and bodies doctors simply don't know what level is completely safe. How -- the arsenic it into the food when cotton was king in the United States arsenic with legal as a pesticide. That arsenic is still in the soil. Those cotton fields now grow rice and rice is especially good at pulling arsenic about of the dirt. And in a -- to healthy eaters brown rice is found to have more arsenic than white. So where's that government office. Today there are no standards defining what's a safe level of arsenic in food. -- This is the territory for the food and drug administration and to give a lot of advice to the companies think content guidance we needed to set some limits Davis has the line -- you have to come in under this line. For their part today nature's -- the company that makes the toddler form. Isn't there -- lab test results quote report undetectable amounts of arsenic at laboratory testing limits. But you know in -- until this is sorted out I think parents -- can be very worried. So concerned about arsenic and as you say that's not the first time we've heard about it. But brown rice we all switch to Britain -- Canada health care -- -- -- so many health benefits from brown rice and I'm not gonna stop using it you know there's low levels of arsenic in many things. Two things I'm gonna do and you can do you know wash that -- really well before cooking it and cookies in extra water -- that can help produce whatever arsenic median there. -- -- and you'll be safe if you do it we -- Thank you Richard --

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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