The mercury mess

Is it really related to developmental disorders?

By
May 3, 2012

As more and more children are diagnosed with autism, more and more researchers are trying to figure out what causes it. The purported link between autism and vaccines has been roundly debunked, but other correlations keep popping up. Is being obese while pregnant a cause? And is consuming high-fructose corn syrup also somehow related?

On Grist, Tom Laskawy recently wrote about a scientific review connecting HFCS with autism. As a subsequent editor's post noted, Laskawy’s article raised a scientific ruckus, with other science bloggers challenging Laskawy’s casual interpretations of the review and chastising him for possible fearmongering.

What’s the possible connection between HFCS and autism? Low levels of mercury, the same stuff originally blamed in the vaccine brouhaha. But as Hanna Brooks Olsen wrote on Bliss Tree, “it’s difficult to truly study something that most of the population is consistently being exposed to at low levels.”

And on Grist yet again, Emily Willingham pointed out that autism rates have continued to rise while our consumption of HFCS has continued to decline, thereby invalidating the presumed link between the two.

Subscribe
Comments
There are no comments on this item
Add a comment

Think before you type

Culinate welcomes comments that are on-topic, clean, and courteous. For the benefit of the community we reserve the right to delete comments that contain advertising, personal attacks, profanity, or which are thinly disguised attempts to promote another website.

Please enter your comment

Format: Bare URLs are automatically linked; use this style: [http://www.example.com "place text to be linked here"] for prettier links. You may specify *bold* or _italic_ text. No HTML please.

Please identify yourself

Not a member? Sign up!

Please prove that you’re not a computer


Advertisement
Culinate 8

Kale in the raw

Eight versions of kale salad

Eight ways to spin everyone’s favorite salad.

Subscribe
Graze: Bites from the Site
First Person

The secret sharer

A father’s legacy

The Culinate Interview

Mollie Katzen

The vegetarian-cooking pioneer

Reviews

Down South

Barbecue, tamales, cocktails, and more

Local Flavors

A winter romesco sauce

Good on everything

Most Popular Articles

Editor’s Choice