Lead Exposure of Four Biologically Important Common Branded and Non-branded Spices: Relative Analysis and Health Implication

Biol Trace Elem Res. 2023 Jan 11;1-13. doi: 10.1007/s12011-022-03553-4. Online ahead of print.


Technological advances and socioeconomic development of Bangladesh are leading to the best choice between branded and non-branded powdered spices. But toxic metal issues can be another factor to elect them. So lead (Pb) exposure and its consequence on the human body for these two categories of four common spices have been ascertained here. A validated laboratory method using hot plate digestion and flame atomic absorption spectrometry (FAAS) has been used for that. The obtained mean concentration of Pb in branded and non-branded spice powders followed the decreasing order of turmeric > coriander > red chili > cumin powder and turmeric > red chili > cumin > coriander powder, respectively, where, in any analysis mode, the non-branded items are potentially ahead of Pb exposure. The market-based mean concentration between these two categories was not a significant difference (t-test). Approximately 90% of the spice samples have shown within the maximum allowable limit by Bangladesh Standard. The sum of estimated daily intake indicated that most of the city market (67%) for non-branded items and some branded (33%) samples have crossed the maximum tolerable daily intake (> 0.21 mg/kg). So, the human health risk assumption for the inhabitant of studied areas suggests there is no significant level of risk for them due to the consumption of spices regarding non-carcinogenic risk factor (THQ and total THQ) and carcinogenic risk factor (CR). But the development of a quality control process for loose spice powders as well as toxic metal screening from raw materials to finish products urgently needed and continuous monitoring with identifying the source of toxic metal is highly recommended.

Keywords: Branded and non-branded; Estimated daily intake; Health risk; Lead exposure; Powdered spice.