Iowa Issues Warning to Cocktail Drinkers

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Top News Pics Kenya Closes Polls in Contentious Election Luis Tato Getty

Because the pH level is so low in mule, the copper may leach into the drink and cause illness.

Iowa's Alcoholic Beverages Division released an advisory bulletin warning consumers about the potential dangers of using copper for serving alcoholic drinks.

Iowa and many other states have adopted the FDA Model Food Code, which bans copper (and copper alloys, such as brass) from coming into direct contact with acidic foods that have a pH below 6.0.

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If you're going out with friends on a Friday night, it isn't uncommon for some people to order a Moscow Mule.

"Mugs that have a copper interior may not be used with this beverage". According to the state's alcoholic beverage division, the vodka-ginger beer-lime mixture can not be served in a solid copper mug. This means that copper mugs that have a copper interior may not be used with this beverage. The symptoms of copper poisoning include vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, or jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes).

Moscow Mule fans don't necessarily have to give up on the traditional look of the drink.

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And, if you're drinking Moscow Mules at every meal, everyday, copper poisoning may be the least of your problems.

But if the inside of the copper mug is lined with another metal, like nickel or stainless steel, ABD says that's fine.

"In poisonings from a long-term buildup of copper in the body, the outcome depends on how much damage there is to the body's organs", the NIH said.

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