Evaluation Content of Selenium, Mercury and Chromium in Commonly Consumed Food (Vegetable and Staple Foods) in Addis Ababa

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Bereded, Solomon

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Addis Ababa University


Food contains a wide range of essential metallic and other mineral elements like zinc, selenium (Se), mercury (Hg), chromium (Cr). The presence of such minerals in food matrix has positive and negative impact on the consumer. Therefore, determination of the content of mineral in food matrix. To determine the above minerals, first samples were collected from Nifas silk Lafto, Akaki and yeka sub-cities and then samples got digested. Finally the total chromium, mercury and selenium were determined. The total content of mercury in tomato, red onion, soil are 75.25 ± 0.375 ng/g, 77.68 ± 0.975μg/kg, 49.23±0.275ng/g respectively (This is mean of Nifas Silk Lafto and Akaki Sub-cities). It wasn‟t detected in waste water, bread and injera. The level of chromium in tomato, red onion wastewater, and soil are 18.50±2.00mg/kg, 14.50±1.00μg/g, 187.25±4.25mg/L, 122.00±7.50±μg/g in that order. It wasn‟t detected in bread and injera. And also the concentration of selenium in red onion, tomato, soil, wastewater, injera and bread are mean± SD 8.015±0.035μg/kg,4.80±ng/g, 2.40±0.15μg/kg, 1.275±0.125ng/mL, 7.875±1.475μg/kg and 1.55±.05ng/g respectively. In all minerals, there is no significant difference within column (area), that implies rejection of alternative hypothesis at p<0.05. But there is significant difference within row (sample) indicating the non-acceptance of the null hypothesis at p<0.05 except in the case of chromium where no significant difference was seen between red onion and tomato. Therefore, it is possible to conclude that the content of chromium in wastewater is very high. The level of selenium in red onion and none fermented injera is also high. The same conclusion goes to mercury content in tomato and red onion. The recommended level of mercury found in food matrix is very small or nil (WHO),where as in the case of selenium the recommended content is for most vegetables and fruits 1-20ng/g, for cereal based food 10-550ng/g (WHO/FAO 2001) and Maximum limitation of chromium in vegetable and fruit 2.3mg/kg (WHO/FAO, 2001). Key words: Selenium; Mercury,;Chromium, Red onion; Tomato; Soil; Wastewater, Injera and Bread.



Selenium; Mercury,;Chromium, Red onion; Tomato; Soil; Wastewater, Injera and Bread.