The current issue of Deutsches Arzteblatt International reports that excessive consumption of phosphate is harmful to health, recommending that foods containing phosphate additives should be labeled.

After a thorough review on phosphate related literature, Eberhard Ritz and his team, found that excessive phosphate consumption leads to a higher mortality in patients with renal disease. Free phosphate, as found in food additives, is entirely absorbed in the gastrointestinal tract and research has demonstrated that individuals with renal disease have significantly elevated concentrations of phosphate levels.

Recent studies have demonstrated that phosphate also seems to damage blood vessels and induce aging processes. Many types of fast food contain phosphate additives, and fast foods are generally predominately consumed by those of lower socioeconomic status. It also appears that excessive phosphate consumption is associated with increased prevalence of cardiovascular diseases in the general population.

In conclusion, the authors suggest for a broader education of physicians and the public in terms of the risk factors associated with phosphate.

Written by: Petra Rattue