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I have this phobia of oxalic acid - could someone knock some sense into me?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created January 16, 2013 at 3:25 PM

Knock sense into me with words, not fists.

14b8422e9b449a21e06fa3349953d4f7

(220)

on August 15, 2013
at 12:15 PM

Wow, i used to have 4 cups of spinach in my green smoothie every single day. But know I use two cups of kale instead

A0c49f398499246c623e6527e9dd5ca2

(548)

on August 15, 2013
at 10:00 AM

As far as I know there is no scientific data that looks at the reduction of oxalic acid fpund in food after different preparation methods. Do you have any references or do you just assume so because proper preparation of phytic acid- or lectin-containing-foods reduces their anti-nutrient content?

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41757)

on January 17, 2013
at 04:59 AM

@ROB, Wikipedia says lowest lethal dose of oxalate is 600 mg/kg. 140 pound man that's 38+ grams. I'm sure a lot of discomfort happens on the way up to that 38 gram dose...

Medium avatar

(10663)

on January 17, 2013
at 02:31 AM

@ROB sweet potatoes contain about 0.24 g of oxalic acid per 100g of sweet potato. Doses of about 4-5 grams are toxic. So it would seem that you'd have to eat almost 4 pounds of sweet potatoes for it to have an effect. Most of the oxalic acid is in the skin/right underneath the skin.

742ff8ba4ff55e84593ede14ac1c3cab

(3536)

on January 17, 2013
at 01:03 AM

What is considered large amounts? I eat quite a few sweet potatoes.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41757)

on January 16, 2013
at 05:53 PM

Yep, we make our own. Antifreeze (ethylene glycol) is toxic because it is detoxified into oxalic acid.

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3 Answers

4
Medium avatar

(10663)

on January 16, 2013
at 05:41 PM

Oxalic acid is a naturally occurring chemical found in some foods but the amount we normally eat in foods is not enough to poison us. In large amounts, yes oxalic acid is poisonous. But unless you have some medical condition like hyperoxaluria, there is no need for you to be worried. Keep in mind, your body naturally produces its own oxalic acid, whether you ingest it or not. Cooking leafy greens will kill the oxalic acid but there are actually some benefits to eating raw leafy greens. If you're eating a normal amount of leafy greens or other oxalic acid-containing foods, the effects are insignificant.

Here is an extensive list of oxalic acid content in fruits/vegetables:

HIGH in Oxalics (g/100 g)
Parsley 1.70
Chives 1.48
Cassava 1.26
Spinach .97
Chard, Swiss .65
Beet leaves .61
Radish .48
Collards .4
Leek .36
Beans, snap .36
Brussels sprouts .36
Garlic .36
Leaf Lettuce .33
Watercress .31
Broccoli .25
Kale .25

Moderate
Carrot .24
Romaine Lettuce .21
Arugula
Escarole
Chicory .21
Turnip .21
Sorrel .2
Sweet potato .2
Celery .19
Eggplant .19
Cauliflower .15

LOW in Oxalics
Asparagus .13
Endive .11
Basil
Cabbage .10
Okra .05
Onion .05
Pea .05
Potato .05
Turnip greens .05
Parsnip .04
Sweet Peppers .04
Rutabaga .03
Raspberry .03
Cucumbers .02
Squash .02
Zucchini .02
Leek .02
Strawberry .01
Coriander .01
Corn .01
Mint .01

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41757)

on January 16, 2013
at 05:53 PM

Yep, we make our own. Antifreeze (ethylene glycol) is toxic because it is detoxified into oxalic acid.

Medium avatar

(10663)

on January 17, 2013
at 02:31 AM

@ROB sweet potatoes contain about 0.24 g of oxalic acid per 100g of sweet potato. Doses of about 4-5 grams are toxic. So it would seem that you'd have to eat almost 4 pounds of sweet potatoes for it to have an effect. Most of the oxalic acid is in the skin/right underneath the skin.

742ff8ba4ff55e84593ede14ac1c3cab

(3536)

on January 17, 2013
at 01:03 AM

What is considered large amounts? I eat quite a few sweet potatoes.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41757)

on January 17, 2013
at 04:59 AM

@ROB, Wikipedia says lowest lethal dose of oxalate is 600 mg/kg. 140 pound man that's 38+ grams. I'm sure a lot of discomfort happens on the way up to that 38 gram dose...

A0c49f398499246c623e6527e9dd5ca2

(548)

on August 15, 2013
at 10:00 AM

As far as I know there is no scientific data that looks at the reduction of oxalic acid fpund in food after different preparation methods. Do you have any references or do you just assume so because proper preparation of phytic acid- or lectin-containing-foods reduces their anti-nutrient content?

2
42cd0feeeda5fa2e2fe1c4fd8255073a

on January 16, 2013
at 11:16 PM

To add to April's comment, cycle your vegetables and cooking methods.. and if eating some of these foods raw, don't eat copius amounts.

These are some vegetables that have relatively higher levels of oaxlic acid: Beets, Brussel sprouts, carrots, collard greens, parsley, spinach, sweet potato, swiss chard, rhubard

A lot of them you tend to cook anyway (seriously, who eats raw sweet potato?) which reduces the level of Oaxlic acid, so I seriously doubt you'll ever risk exposing yourself to high enough levels to pose any serious problems... unless you're popping cups and cups of raw spinach into a green smoothie every single day.

14b8422e9b449a21e06fa3349953d4f7

(220)

on August 15, 2013
at 12:15 PM

Wow, i used to have 4 cups of spinach in my green smoothie every single day. But know I use two cups of kale instead

0
831ccc53888384e1a93c4a508a00eec7

on August 15, 2013
at 06:11 AM

Thanks for the info. I had a kidney stone and it was a calcium oxalate stone, 5mm. IT WAS PAINFUL!!!!! I appreciate the help.

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