Author(s): Verma S, Yadav S, Singh I
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Abstract Concentrations of seven heavy metals, viz. Cd, Ni, Pb, Cr, Cu, Fe and Zn were determined in 30 samples of various brands of five different tobacco product types easily available in Indian markets. Three product types cigarettes, cigars and biri (tobacco rolled in dry leaf and smoked without filter) are consumed by smoking while chewing tobacco and snuff are consumed by chewing and sniffing, respectively. The metal content showed smoking and non-smoking type, brand and element specific variations. In the non-smoking type, chewing tobacco samples contained more heavy metals compared to snuff samples. Biri showed minimum metal content compared to cigarettes and cigars among the smoking types. This could be due to the metal enrichment during both chemical and physical processing in finished product; biri being the most raw and cheap product. The intra brand variations also indicate the same as the processing technologies are exclusive and different for each brand. The results are nearly comparable to the existing data with limited exceptions. We suggest that the smoke and ash produced could be significant contributor to metal load in the soil, air and water systems in addition to the adverse human health effects via direct tobacco consumption. Copyright (c) 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
This article was published in Food Chem Toxicol
and referenced in Journal of Civil & Environmental Engineering