As we all know turmeric has many health benefits, and for those reasons aside its pungent taste, we buy it and consume it a lot. However, we need to be very careful from which turmeric products we buy as certain percentage of them contain dangerous levels of lead.
If you have consumed turmeric powder from any questionable sources you may be at risk of consuming dangerous quantities of a toxic heavy metal related to brain and heart damage, and bone disorders. Lead is commonly found in low-quality turmeric products because most of this root is grown in soil with a high-lead content in or around Chine and India, and then imported into the U.S. Be aware of the package because even though it says processed, labelled, or distributed in U.S., it does not necessarily mean that it is grown on American soil.
Lead can be very easily accumulated in the body thereby causing great damage on the nervous system and body vital organs.FDA also confirms this fact, quoting: “Too much [lead exposure] can cause health problems, including delayed mental and physical development and learning deficiencies. Pregnant women, infants and young children especially should avoid exposure to lead.”
However, even though it is confirmed that lead is harmful FDA still won’t state the correct amount of lead which is dangerous towards someone’s health. The FDA tests foods and its samples via ICP-OES or ICP-MS across the whole country, but still do not give exact information how much lead is required to trigger any kind of disease.
Up to now 6 brands of turmeric were being recalled due to lead contamination, and no injuries or illnesses were reported from the high lead levels in the turmeric, however according to Gel Spice, Inc. precautions must be taken.
Here below is the list of the following products that FDA has recalled as a result of potential lead contamination:
The official website of FDA shows pictures of the products that have an excessive lead content for those consumers who are not sure if the spice they have at home is on the list. If you have any questions regarding the recall you can contact Gel Spice, Inc. at (201) 564-0435, their working time is from 8am to 4pm Eastern Standard Time (EST).
FDA strongly advises you if you have these products at home immediately throw them away and refrain from their use.
This recall is actually an expansion of a previous recall:
“Gel Spice, Inc. is recalling one lot of Fresh Finds Ground Turmeric Powder because the product contains elevated lead levels. The recalled ‘Fresh Finds Ground Turmeric’ is packaged in 3.75 oz. PET jars. It has a code of B/B 03/08/19 and B/B 05/18/19 on the neck of the container. The package also has a UPC code of 81026-01230. The product was distributed at Big Lots Stores throughout the United States.”
What are the Dangers of Lead Exposure?
Lead exposure from turmeric powder actually means lead poisoning which can be dangerous if certain measures are no taken on time. Mostly affected are pregnant women, young children, the elderly and frail individuals, and those ones with weak immune systems.
Here below are the following signs of reoccurring lead exposure:
- abdominal pain and cramps,
- sleep issues,
- violent behavior,
- loss of appetite,
- loss of developmental skills in children,
- memory loss,
- high blood pressure,
- tingling or numbness in the limbs,
- Kidneys’ disorder.
If a child has been exposed to lead after long period of time it may develop intellectual disabilities. However, this cannot occur after one instance of exposure to lead, yet parents should still be very cautious when their children are concerned.
If you suspect that your child has been exposed to lead by consuming contaminated turmeric, you must contact your doctor immediately. Your child will be given a blood test to determine the levels of lead in its blood and whether or not a further treatment will be needed, this is same procedure for adult person as well.