F. M. Adebiyi, O. T. Ore* and F. J. Ojile
The levels of heavy metals (Pb, Cr, Cu, Zn, Ni, Co, Cd, and Mn) and potassium bromate were determined in bread commonly consumed in Nigeria. These were evaluated to assess the nutritive quality of bread as well as the possible health risks associated with its consumption. The results of the study showed that copper had the highest mean concentration (39.20 ± 1.12 mg/kg) while lead had the lowest mean concentration (0.42 ± 0.02 mg/kg). The heavy metals levels followed the order: Cu > Zn > Cr > Mn > Ni > Co > Cd > Pb. Potassium bromate was undetected in the investigated bread samples. The target hazard quotients of Cr, Cu, and Cd were greater than 1, as opposed to the other metals which were lesser than 1. The children were the more vulnerable population based on their relatively higher total target hazard quotient (35.09) compared to the adults (9.35). Carcinogenic health risks were associated with bread consumption by both adults and children. Compliance with regulatory agencies towards ensuring a healthy production environment should be enforced.