Does it seem like mercury poisoning is only for the rich and famous these days? Well, it turns out the rest of us can join in the fun for cheap. Reports came out last week on a new study that found traces of mercury in samples of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), the stuff that makes soft drinks, salad dressings and even white bread so palatable.
The researchers admitted their study, available here, isn't comprehensive, finding mercury in nine out of only 20 samples. (Of the 11 samples found not to contain mercury, nine were from the same manufacturer.) Even so, the authors cite the 45 percent positive findings as grounds for further study, saying it would be "prudent and perhaps essential for public health ..."
HFCS has been at the center of some recent controversy for its seeming link to rising obesity rates.
If nothing else, the results of this study may intensify the debate about where American food comes from. The rest of us can just be happy to know how we can share a hospital room with Jeremy Piven.