| Not just Maggi, even sindoor has dangerous levels of lead |
01 Sep 2017
|If you thought lead was present only in Maggi and other such food products, you might want to rethink.
Researchers have now warned that many sindoor brands have high levels of lead in them which could have disastrous effects on health.
Sindoor, or vermilion, is an integral part of attire for married Hindu women. It is used for all during Hindu religious ceremonies.
| The findings of the study, in details |
|Experts tested 95 sindoor samples from South Asian stores in New Jersey, US, and 23 from shops in Delhi and Mumbai.
80% of the samples had lead. A third had lead above FDA-recommended levels (20 micrograms/gram). Five samples had more than 10,000 micrograms of lead.
Moreover, levels varied in different samples of the same brand, thus making identifying dangerous products difficult.
| Why is lead used in sindoor? What are the dangers? |
|Some manufacturers put lead tetroxide in sindoor to give it a distinctive red colour. But according to study author Dr. Derek Shendell of Rutgers School of Public Health (Piscataway), "There is no safe level of lead."
Even low levels of lead in blood can "affect IQ, ability to pay attention, and academic achievement".
Effects can't be corrected; the only option is prevention.
| Is there any other dangerous makeup product? |
|On this note, you should know that sindoor isn't the only cosmetic that includes a harmful chemical. Studies have found that lead is also found in lipstick and kajal, mercury in skin creams, cadmium in eyeliners and concealers, nickel in powders and blushers, and even arsenic in mascara and foundations.
Unsurprisingly, you won't find these ingredients mentioned on the packaging.
| Is there any way to prevent such danger? |
|Experts say the onus is on researchers, doctors and parents to make their children aware of the potential health hazards of such products. Companies should also be cognizant of this issue, they say, and should work to create lead-free products.|