This study was to analyze the risk of sulfites in food consumed by the Chinese people and assess the health protection capability of maximum-permitted level (MPL) of sulfites in GB 2760-2011. Sulfites as food additives are overused or abused in many food categories. When the MPL in GB 2760-2011 was used as sulfites content in food, the intake of sulfites in most surveyed populations was lower than the acceptable daily intake (ADI). Excess intake of sulfites was found in all the surveyed groups when a high percentile of sulfites in food was in taken. Moreover, children aged 1-6 years are at a high risk to intake excess sulfites. The primary cause for the excess intake of sulfites in Chinese people is the overuse and abuse of sulfites by the food industry. The current MPL of sulfites in GB 2760-2011 protects the health of most populations.
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