Pediatric Lead Posioning
The Journal of Pediatrics published an article earlier this year describing cases of pediatric lead intoxication from imported Indian spices and cultural powders. They determined lead concentrations in these products and predicted the effects of ingestion on pediatric blood lead levels (BLLs). The results showed cases of pediatric lead poisoning from Indian spices or cultural powders. Twenty-two of 86 spices and foodstuff products contained >1 µg/g lead (for these 22 samples, mean: 2.6 µg/g [95% confidence interval: 1.9–3.3]; maximum: 7.6 µg/g). Forty-six of 71 cultural products contained >1 µg/g lead (for 43 of these samples, mean: 8.0 µg/g [95% confidence interval: 5.2–10.8]; maximum: 41.4 µg/g). The fixed ingestion of 5 µg/day and 50% bioavailability, predicted geometric mean BLLs for children aged 0 to 4 years increased from 3.2 to 4.1 µg/dL, and predicted prevalence of children with a BLL of >10 µg/dL increased more than threefold (0.8%–2.8%). The reference range for Lead is birth-6 yoa 6 years <10 mcg/dL.
Chronic exposure to spices and cultural powders may cause elevated BLLs. A majority of cultural products contained >1 µg/g lead. We have all heard of lead paint but this is a source we haven’t heard much about but need to be aware. Higher BLLs are also associated with later pubertal onset in another study.
I think its wise to stay up to date with these things and be aware. I wish you all the best!
WHERE TO CHECK FOR LEAD RECALLS
2019 UPDATE: Today at least 4 million households have children living in them that are being exposed to high levels of lead. There are approximately half a million U.S. children ages 1-5 with blood lead levels above 5 micrograms per deciliter (µg/dL), the reference level at which CDC recommends public health actions be initiated. CDC WEBSITE