DETERMINATION OF HEAVY METALS IN FIVE MAJOR INGREDIENTS OF HERBAL MEDICINESAbstract
Ayurvedic Medicine originated in India more than 2000 years ago and relied heavily on herbal medicine products. Approximately 80% of India’s 1 billion populations use Ayurveda through more than one-half million Ayurvedic practitioners working in 2860 Ayurvedic hospitals and 22100 clinics. Ayurveda’s popularity in Western countries has increased. There are several reports of adverse effects of these herbal preparations due to the presence of high level of heavy metals such as Lead, cadmium, arsenic, and mercury and this problem has become a matter of concern. The present study was done to check the presence of lead, cadmium, arsenic, and mercury in five major ingredients Ajwain (Trachyspermum copticum), Ginger (Zingiber officinale), Neem tree (Azadirachta Indica L.), Peppermint (Mentha piperita), Turmeric (Curcuma longa) are the most essential and regular used materials for preparation of herbal medicines. These ingredients were procured from different location of Delhi, India, and subjected to analysis by Inductively Coupled Plasma-Optical Emission Spectroscopy (ICP-OES) and Atomic Absorption spectrometer-Vapor Generation Assembly (AAS-VGA). Results were compared with the permissible limits (PL), as set by the World Health Organization (WHO). The percent recoveries in all the case were within the acceptable limits of 70% to 120% as per regulatory guidelines.