Rich and Poor Have Different Toxins in Bodies

It's sushi and sunscreen vs. cigarettes

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff

Posted Aug 6, 2013 12:27 PM CDT | Updated Aug 10, 2013 7:00 PM CDT

(Newser) – It might be the weirdest indicator of wealth, or lack thereof, yet: Generally speaking, rich people and poor people have different toxins in their bodies, according to a new study spotted by Quartz. For example, rich people tend to have greater levels of things such as mercury and arsenic, probably because they eat more sushi and fancy shellfish. They also show higher levels of the main ingredient in sunscreen, oxybenzone, perhaps because they're more likely to slather it on and spend time at the beach or on their boats.

But researchers at the University of Exeter found that lower-income people have the market on toxins of their own. The worst are lead and cadmium, which the study chalked up to higher levels of smoking among the poor, reports the Daily Mail. They also have higher levels of BPA, the toxin sometimes found in plastic food containers and cans. The clear difference in income groups surprised even the researchers, notes Salon, which has a chart.

  (Shutterstock)
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