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Indian Journal of Forensic Medicine & Toxicology
Year : 2019, Volume : 13, Issue : 1
First page : ( 19) Last page : ( 24)
Print ISSN : 0973-9122. Online ISSN : 0973-9130.
Article DOI : 10.5958/0973-9130.2019.00005.7

Detection and Estimation of Arsenic and Lead in Coconut Water-A Kerala Study

Pillay VV1, Sasidharan Anu2,*, Arathy SL3, Sundaram K R4, Greeshma C R5

1Chief, Poison Control Centre, Department of Forensic Medicine & Toxicology

2Associate Professor, Department of Forensic Medicine & Toxicology

3Senior Research Officer, Analytical Toxicology Laboratory Department of Forensic Medicine & Toxicology

4Professor & Head, Department of Biostatistics

5Tutor, Department of Biostatistics, Amrita School of Medicine, AIMS, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, Kochi

*Corresponding author: Anu Sasidharan Associate Professor, Department of Forensic Medicine & Toxicology -, Email ID: anu19153@aims.amrita.edu, Tel: +919400337086

Online published on 8 February, 2019.


Coconut is a popular food ingredient in many parts of the world and the water it contains is believed to be the purest form of natural drink available. The water is rich in potassium, sodium, chloride and many vitamins, and hence is considered the beverage of choice. In medical practice, coconut water is recommended as the preferred oral rehydration fluid in cases of severe dehydration due to diarrhoea.

Chronic heavy metal poisoning has been shown to occur from plant products. However there is scanty research work relating to coconuts and heavy metal contamination. Among the various metals, lead is said to be the commonest metal involved. Arsenic is only second to lead in the incidence of chronic toxicity. When plants are exposed to heavy metals, mostly through contaminated water (irrigation), or contaminated soil, they accumulate in edible parts such as the fruits.

This study was undertaken to detect the presence of two of the commonest heavy metals-arsenic and lead-in coconut water present in coconuts sold in different parts of Ernakulam district of Kerala state, and to quantitatively assess their levels. It was also decided to detect the differences in the levels of the metals between tender and mature coconut water, and also to detect inter-zonal variations within Ernakulam district in the levels of the two heavy metals, in tender and mature coconut water.



Coconut, Coconut water, Heavy metal, Lead, Arsenic.


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