A recent study has revealed that there are high chances of baby food containing traces of poisonous heavy metals. These chemicals include lead and arsenic. This research was commissioned by the HBBF or the Bright Futures for Healthy Babies. A report was released on Thursday. It showed that 168 different baby foods were tested to detect presence of heavy metals such as lead, arsenic, cadmium and mercury.
The researchers discovered that 95% of the tested baby foods had traces of contamination by one or more of the four mentioned heavy metals. Further, one out of four baby foods that were examined, contained all the four of these harmful heavy metals. Merely 9 out of the tested 168 baby food productsdid not contain any trace amount of the four metals.
The food products posing maximum risk include rice-based items like rice cereals and puff snacks as well as fruit juices. In particular, rice can easily absorb arsenic. The chemical is commonly used as a pesticide on growing rice. Out of the 7 infant rice cereal samples that were tested, 4 tested positive for containing inorganic arsenic. This refers to a more poisonous form of arsenic. In fact, it exceeds the 100 parts in a billion limits that is generally proposed by the FDA or the Administration of Drug and Food.
Apart from these, carrots and sweet potatoes also tested positive for contamination as they are root crops. Out of these 4 metals, the most serious threat is lead. It appeared in 94% of the tested baby foods. Next on the list was cadmium, followed by arsenic as they were present in nearly 75% of baby food materials. The chemical found the least number of times was mercury. It contaminated less than a third of all the tested products. 13 different kinds of food, varying over 61 different brands were tested in this experiment. They included teething biscuits, fruit juices, infant formula and cereals.
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