Alex Ortega—EyeEm/Getty Images
By Sarah Begley
July 28, 2015

High levels of arsenic can naturally occur in rice, making the food dangerous to consume in too-great quantities. But an unconventional cooking method might help reduce the risk.

Researchers knew that the standard method of boiling rice in a pot or rice cooker only fixes the arsenic to the grain. But a different preparation method could wash away some of the dangerous chemical element.

So they tried cooking it in a coffee maker, which not only distilled the cooking water (which can also contain arsenic) through the steaming process, but also allowed excess liquid to drip through the filter, removing more arsenic. This method effectively reduced the level of arsenic by about half.

The researchers do not expect most people to start cooking their rice in their percolators, but they do hope that the proof encourages manufacturers to develop new rice cookers that operate on the principle.

[Scientific American]

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