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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

FDA Poisonous Plant Database

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AUTHOR(S): Kohman, E. F.
TITLE: Oxalic acid in foods and its behavior and fate in the diet.
YEAR: 1939 CITATION: J Nutr, 18(3), 233-246 [English]
FDA #: F10155
ABSTRACT: Oxalates, expressed as anhydrous oxalic acid, have been shown to occur to the extent of about 10% on a dry basis in spinach, New Zealand spinach, Swiss chard, beet tops, lamb's quarter, poke, purslane and rhubarb. Traces were found in nearly all vegetables and fruits. If to a diet of meat, peas, carrots and sweet potatoes, relatively low in calcium but permitting good though not maximum growth and bone formation, spinach is added to the extent of about 8% to supply 60% of the calcium, a high percentage of deaths occurs among rats fed between the age of 21 and 90 days. Reproduction is impossible. The bones are extremely low in calcium, tooth structure is disorganized and dentine poorly calcified. Spinach not only supplies no available calcium but renders unavailable considerable of that of the other foods. Considerable of the oxalate appears in the urine, much more in the feces. Turnip greens, mustard greens, kale and collards, greens with negligible oxalates, under similar conditions produce excellent animals that deposit four times as much calcium per unit body weight as those receiving spinach.
GRIN #: 7057 Exit Disclaimer
COMMON NAME: swiss chard
STANDARD COMMON NAME
FAMILYChenopodiaceae
LATIN NAME
STANDARD PLANT NAMEBeta vulgaris L. subsp. vulgaris
GRIN #: 10178 Exit Disclaimer
COMMON NAME: lamb's quarter
STANDARD COMMON NAME: lamb's quarter
FAMILYChenopodiaceae
LATIN NAME
STANDARD PLANT NAMEChenopodium album L.
GRIN #: 28252 Exit Disclaimer
COMMON NAME: poke
STANDARD COMMON NAME: poke
FAMILYPhytolaccaceae
LATIN NAME
STANDARD PLANT NAMEPhytolacca americana L.
GRIN #: 29453 Exit Disclaimer
COMMON NAME: purslane
STANDARD COMMON NAME: purslane
FAMILYPortulacaceae
LATIN NAME
STANDARD PLANT NAMEPortulaca oleracea L.
GRIN #: 31110 Exit Disclaimer
COMMON NAME: rhubarb
STANDARD COMMON NAME
FAMILYPolygonaceae
LATIN NAME
STANDARD PLANT NAMERheum×hybridum Murray
GRIN #: 35256 Exit Disclaimer
COMMON NAME: spinach
STANDARD COMMON NAME: spinach
FAMILYChenopodiaceae
LATIN NAME
STANDARD PLANT NAMESpinacia oleracea L.
GRIN #: 36385 Exit Disclaimer
COMMON NAME: New Zealand spinach
STANDARD COMMON NAME
FAMILYAizoaceae
LATIN NAME
STANDARD PLANT NAMETetragonia tetragonoides (Pall.) Kuntze
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