In the United States and Canada, processed infant foods have not been implicated in methemoglobinemia associated with food or water intake in infants. Although raw spinach and beets have a higher nitrate content than do other infant foods, one or more protective factors may prevent the extrinsic or intrinsic formation of toxic levels of nitrite from these foods as commercially processed for feeding of infants.

Nitrate contamination of drinking water which may occur from run-off from fields fertilized with nitrates, represents a potential hazard.

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