Pesticides, herbicides and insecticide compounds present in food products have caused serious concerns in the public. Toxic components found in pesticides and other chemicals used on farms can cause several health risks. Food product manufacturers can be held responsible for serving unsafe foods for human consumption. URS food testing labs in UAE provide accurate food testing services for pesticides, chemicals, bacteria, heavy metals and other contaminants.

Pesticides are any substance used to destroy any form of life that threatens plants or animals. Pesticides are used in many ways, and their health risks vary depending on the method. This article will not only give you details about pesticides and health risks associated with them, but also how to avoid dangerous chemicals that come in food products and what precautions can be taken while buying fruits and vegetables to avoid pesticide exposure.

Organic and Synthetic Pesticides

Both synthetic and organic pesticides pose health risks at levels higher than those typically found in fruits and vegetables. A recent review found that exposure to pesticides may be linked with a higher risk of Parkinson’s disease and could alter specific genes involved in its development.

The researchers analyzed data from more than 50 studies that looked at the link between pesticide exposures and Parkinson’s disease risk. Their findings suggest that people who were exposed to high levels of pesticides had an increased risk of developing the condition compared to those who were not exposed.

Many experts believe that pesticides are safe at very low levels, but the effects of long-term exposure at low concentrations are still unclear. While most studies have looked at individual chemicals or groups of chemicals, there is some evidence that combinations of pesticides may be more dangerous than any one chemical alone. Presenting your farm produce for a microbiology testing in Dubai at a recognized laboratory will prove effective in identifying harmful pesticides in your products.

Organic food products are sometimes marketed as safer because they’re grown without synthetic pesticides, but organic farming practices can also involve other potentially toxic compounds like copper sulphate or pyrethrins. Some studies suggest that organic produce may have more vitamin C, but it’s not clear if this difference translates into better health outcomes overall.  In addition, the risk for developing cancer from pesticide exposure depends on how much you eat and how often you eat it.

  • Cancer Risks

According to a recent study of more than 30,000 female spouses of pesticide applicators, found that an increased exposure to organophosphates—a type of chemical used in pesticides—was linked to a significantly higher risk for hormone-related cancers like breast, ovarian and thyroid cancer.

The results of another review, which included studies that examined the effects of exposure to organophosphate pesticides like malathion, terbufos and chlorpyrifos on humans as well as animals and test tubes, were similar: such pesticide use was associated with an increased chance of developing cancer over time.

Studies have also found that the use of pesticides may increase your risk for developing several other kinds of cancer, including prostate, lung and liver.

  • Neurotoxicity

Neurotoxicity is the damage or destruction of neurons. It can also be called neuronopathy and it can affect motor coordination, sensory perception and cognitive function. Neurotoxicity is often associated with toxic exposure to chemicals, including pesticides, which may be present in food products. In many cases, neurotoxicity is not evident until years after the initial exposure.

In addition to neurotoxicity, there is evidence that pesticides can affect other parts of the nervous system (central nervous system) including:

Central Nervous System Effects: Neuronal degeneration and death, apoptosis (programmed cell death), disruption of myelination (covering of nerve cells), oligodendrocytes (specialized cells).

Peripheral Nervous System Effects: Demyelination (loss of myelin sheath), axonopathy (deterioration of axons), neuropathy, encephalopathy and seizures.

  • Fertility Issues

Pesticides can cause fertility issues in both men and women. While exposure to pesticides may not be the only factor that affects fertility, it is a significant one. Pesticides have been shown to be responsible for many problems related to reproductive health. Some of these include:-

  • Infertility
  • Male infertility
  • Female infertility
  • Increased risk of miscarriage
  • Low sperm count

One study found that women who ate more fruits and vegetables with high levels of pesticides were twice as likely to experience infertility than those who ate fewer fruits and vegetables with high levels of pesticides. Another study found that women who ate organic foods had fewer problems with infertility than those who did not consume organic foods.

How to Minimise Pesticide Exposure on Food Products

Pesticide exposure on food products can be identified through a simple test that can be done in a lab. Get your food products tested at an ISO accredited laboratory in Dubai. The major reason behind this is because the government authorities are not responsible for the safety of your food products, rather they are only responsible for ensuring that there are no illegal substances present in the product.

Have your food products tested by sending them to the URS Laboratory UAE and have them analysed for pesticide residue and then comparing it with the standards set by FAO/WHO/IPCC (Food and Agriculture Organization/World Health Organization/Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change). This way, you will be able to know whether or not there is any pesticide residue present in your food items.

Test Your Food Products if They Are Safe For Human Consumption

The research reviewed in this paper concludes that pesticide risks are real and there are simple steps consumers can take to protect themselves and their families. We suggest that consumers should increase consumption of organically grown food and ensure they carefully wash produce prior to eating it. This will minimise your exposure to pesticides and lower your risk of adverse health effects associated with pesticide consumption.

In short, pesticides and other harmful chemicals are used to grow our food; but there are the kinds that are potentially toxic to health. We hope you are now aware of the health risks associated with pesticides and reach out to a certified laboratory in the UAE region to guarantee healthy produce. Find out how these laboratory testing services in Dubai can identify and minimise pesticide presence in order to have a food supply that remains safe and free from harmful microorganisms.