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Scientists Find People Vary Widely in their Ability to Eliminate Arsenic – Implications for Autism?

Posted Sep 02 2009 12:00am

Claude rains casablanca By Kent Heckenlively, Esq.

There’s a famous scene in the movie Casablanca in which the French police captain in Rick’s Café is told there’s illegal gambling at the establishment, and in mock surprise says, “I'm shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here!”, just before being handed his winnings.  For veterans of the autism-toxic metals war this is one of those kind of stories.

According to an August 27, 2009 article in Science Daily (HERE) there’s a wide variation in the ability of people to excrete arsenic.  The subjects were given seafood containing known amounts of arsenic and then in the days following their urine was measured for arsenic excretion.  The researchers from the University of Graz, Austria “found that ability to eliminate arsenic from the body varied greatly, with some participants excreting up to 95 percent of the ingested arsenic, but others eliminating as little as 4 percent.”

All right, so let me break this down.  Fish often contain arsenic, and I think I recall fish often contain some other toxic metal . . . it’s on the tip of my tongue . . . oh yeah, it’s MERCURY!  That's the same mercury that a recent study found present in 100% of fish sampled from all parts of the United States.  But we're not supposed to worry about that because only 25% of them were at unsafe levels!  Just for the sake of argument let’s do a thought experiment.

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