Pesticides in Chinese Bamboo Shoots

Pesticides in Chinese Bamboo Shoots
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Cans of bamboo shoots imported from China may have concerning levels of pesticide contamination.

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Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

There are some plant foods that we may want to stay away from, such as cans of bamboo shoots imported from China. This was a study to evaluate the residues of organochlorine pesticides, like DDT, in Chinese bamboo shoots. Now, this was research carried out in China. As I read the article, I couldn’t help but get a distinct sense they were trying to downplay their findings. For example, they said “only nine pesticides were detected…”

This was their conclusion: “While all sampled bamboo shoots contained these pesticides, most…were safe for consumption.”

Uh, no thanks.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image thanks to Joi via flickr

Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

There are some plant foods that we may want to stay away from, such as cans of bamboo shoots imported from China. This was a study to evaluate the residues of organochlorine pesticides, like DDT, in Chinese bamboo shoots. Now, this was research carried out in China. As I read the article, I couldn’t help but get a distinct sense they were trying to downplay their findings. For example, they said “only nine pesticides were detected…”

This was their conclusion: “While all sampled bamboo shoots contained these pesticides, most…were safe for consumption.”

Uh, no thanks.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image thanks to Joi via flickr

Doctor's Note

That was short and sweet! Okay, maybe not so sweet. Because organochlorine pesticides tend to build up in animal fat (see for example, Cannibalistic Feed BiomagnificationAvoiding Other Banned Pesticides, and Industrial Carcinogens in Animal Fat) we tend to think of meat, eggs, and dairy as being the most heavily contaminated. We especially think of farmed fish (see Farmed Fish vs. Wild-Caught) and fish oil (see DDT in Fish Oil Supplements), but studies like this suggest there may also be significant plant sources. Do environmental pollutants result in a weighty number of cancer cases? See President’s Cancer Panel Report on Environmental Risk. How contaminated is the general population? See the first video in this series: CDC Report on Environmental Chemical Exposure.

For further context, check out my associated blog post: Pollutants in Californian Breast Tissue.

If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.

18 responses to “Pesticides in Chinese Bamboo Shoots

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  1. That was short and sweet! OK, maybe not so sweet. Because organochlorine pesticides tend to build up in animal fat (see for example, Cannibalistic Feed Biomagnification, Avoiding Other Banned Pesticides, and Industrial Carcinogens in Animal Fat) we tend to think of meat, eggs, and dairy as being the most heavily contaminated. We especially think of farmed fish and fish oil), but studies like this suggest there may also be significant plant sources. Do environmental pollutants result in a weighty number of cancer cases? See yesterday’s NutritionFacts.org video-of-the-day Pesticides in Chinese Bamboo Shoots. How contaminated is the general population? See the first video in this series CDC Report on Environmental Chemical Exposure.
     
    If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.

    1. Uhh No Thanks!  Speaking of that ‘Inquiring Minds’ want to know about GMO’s and the BT toxin (Bacillus thuringiensis’ Crystal Toxin) that is in many GMO’s soy, maize and Canola oil.
      This toxin forms pores in the cells of the intestinal wall in certain insects causing cell death and eventually insect death. 

      Preliminary studies had to be obtained under court order (Because Monsanto doesn’t let this info out) show the possibility of nephro and heptotoxicity in rats.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=safety%20of%20gmo%20crops%20animals%20france

      We ingest this toxin and there are reports of this toxin in the guts of pregnant women. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21338670
      This has a huge potential to cause ‘leaky gut’ syndrome which is the probable theory of cause of several autoimmune disorders.

      If you live in California vote YES on 37.  We as a public need to be informed of what is in our food!  Then at least we have a CHOICE to eat or not eat GMO products!

      This topic is very interesting regarding the Human toxicity of GMO’s and I am not sure if Dr. Greger would want to tackle this subject because of the potential legal risk of offending Monsanto.

      But the “Inquiring Minds of Food Toxicity” want to know, is it Good or Bad, Fact or Fiction!

      ;-}

  2. This is gonna be a long series of videos if the good Dr. is going to focus on such minute subjects. I think that we should all avoid almost any foods imported from China for a variety of reasons that include probable contamination, false labeling, carbon footprint, and probably several others. This leaves aside the fact that canned vegetables in general are not nutritious. I realize that it may be difficult to come up with significant facts every day and I very much appreciate this site and what Dr. Greger is doing for all of us, so please don’t judge my comments too harshly.
    Thanks

    1. I was looking specifically for information relating to pesticides and or toxins in canned bamboo shoots, so this information (although not quite long enough) was good for me.

  3. I find it confusing, what are we to eat, every thing is bad. Shure greens are good but they dont have any calories, then you turn to seeds and grains but they are bad since they are full of anti nutrients. So you try sweet potato, well they are packed with oxalic acid. What is left is only fruit but they also have lots of stuff that is bad. So where do you get the staple calories from?

    1. Sometimes taking all this information in can be a bit confusing and overwhelming, but over time, and once you learn more, I think you will find that it is actually not that confusing at all. That, in fact, it is really pretty simple.   The key is to eat as much plant-based whole foods (fruits, veggies, legumes, whole grains, etc.) as possible.  There are many ways to do this and many resources out there that can help you figure out which method works best for you. This website is a great place to start. You may also want to look into reading books by the following: Dr. Joel Fuhrman, Dr. T. Colin Campbell, Dr.Caldwell B. Esselstyn Jr., Dr. McDougall, and Dr. Neil Barnard.

      You do not have to eat just fruits to eat healthier (not all seeds and grains are bad and sweet potatoes are a great menu option). It’s true, for various reasons some people opt to be very strict with plant-based diets and others choose to be a bit more flexible.  It really depends on one’s own circumstances. I started out eating vegetarian before dinner time, then switched over to vegan before dinner time.  Now, I eat plant-based vegan at home and whatever I want when I go out (but try to eat on the healthier side…although I do have my weak moments…hey. I’m human and I enjoy food).

      The transition to a plant-based diet can be tricky, and it will take some adjusting, but it is completely possible.  Just know that you can ease into it until you find the balance that works for you.

      1. WholeFoodsChomper, while your comment is 5 years old, I did feel a bit compelled to point out that if you’er not 100% plant based (among other things, such as not getting products tested on animals or wearing/using animal products) all the time, then your diet isn’t “vegan” as veganism isn’t a diet but a moral and ethical way of living. Plant based and vegan are different e.g. all vegans are plant based but not all plant based eaters are vegan. I can understand people making that mistake in wording but I like to point it out when I see it.

    2. Grains and beans do indeed have antinutrients but only if you eat them raw, which is very uncommon. Eating foods high in oxalic acid does not mean they are unhealthy and including many high oxalate foods in your diet will not make you calcium deficient.

    3. Henke, obviously your comment is old and hopefully you’re no longer confused, but for the sake of onlookers on the rare chance you still may be unsure of what to eat (I hope not), I just wanted to recommend the book “How Not To Die.” There is nothing bad in fruit, nothing bad in sweet potatoes, nuts and seeds and grains do not contain anti nutrients, on the contrary, phytates are actually incredibly healthy and help prevent cancer.
      Eat a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, beans, legumes, nuts, seeds, grains, and you’ll be as healthy as you can be! :) Over worrying is unhealthy and unnecessary. The healthiest communities in the world live off of the above mentioned foods and they don’t worry about “anti nutrients” and other such things that bloggers like to go on and on about.
      China is not the best place to get food from is all, they are not exactly known for having trustworthy tests and reports. But if you can’t avoid getting something from China, sometimes it’s ok… just contact the company to see how well they know the growers and what tests they do on the foods they’re selling. Best not to get anything manufactured in China though.

  4. Went thru my pantry and luckily only one was from China (don’t know where the couple of cans that I went through in the last month or two came from, tho!)…..the other two were from Thailand so hopefully those are o.k.

  5. I am also wondering about green tea and pesticides. Since all the green tea I purchase says it is from China, aren’t the green tea leaves going to be full of pesticides as well? China is known to be one of the most polluted countries in the world…..should be be drinking so much of their green tea, as recommended?

    1. RPower, it can depend on where in China it is grown. Republic of tea’s Double Green Matcha tea, for example, is a blend of Japanese matcha and Chinese green tea, but they get their green tea from a place in China (so sorry I forget the name!) known for tea growing and it was the first place in China to set up a clean air monitoring station (I know I’m wording that wrong…). Also, they have long relationships with the growers and test their products for purity. Basically it always pays to talk to the company.
      I try to avoid things grown in China as much as possible, but we can only do our best. Finding out if companies do tests once the products arrive is a good thing to look for. Talking to the company not only pays off for you, but as people become more involved with where their food comes, how it’s grown, etc., standards are raised because companies notice, and that’s better for everyone.

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