This is a preview and has not been published.

Determination of essential and trace elements in various vegetables using ICP-MS


  • Bashdar Abuzed Sadee Department of Food Technology, College of Agricultural Engineering Sciences, ‎Salahaddin ‎‎University, Erbil, Iraq & Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Cihan University-Erbil, Erbil, Iraq.‎
  • Rasul Jameel Ali Department of Clinical Biochemistry, College of Health Sciences, Hawler Medical ‎University, Erbil, Iraq.‎



Hazard Index, Hazard Quotient, Heavy metals, ICP-MS, Validation


Metal contents in vegetables are interesting because of issues related to food safety and ‎potential health risks. The availability of these metals in the human body ‎may perform many biochemical functions and some of them linked with various diseases at ‎high levels. The current study aimed to evaluate the concentration of various metals in ‎common local consumed vegetables using ICP-MS. The concentrations of metals in vegetables ‎of tarragon, Bay laurel, dill, Syrian mesquite, vine leaves, thymes, arugula, basil, common ‎purslane and parsley of this study were found to be in the range of, 76-778 for Al, 10-333 for B, 4-119 for ‎Ba, ‎2812‎-24645 for Ca, 0.1-0.32 for Co, 201-464 for Fe, 3661-46400 for K, 0.31–‎‎1.53 for Li, 860-14330 for Mg, 16.20-71.5 for Mn, 612-4725 for Na and 15.8-46 µg ‎g-1 for Zn. The results revealed that the concentration of Al, B except in Syrian mesquite, Ba, Ca, ‎Fe, K, Mg and Mn in all analysed vegetables is higher than the recommended value, Li is ‎well-within the safe limit, and Co, Na except in dill, arugula and common purslane, Zn are ‎lower than the recommended intake of these elements. From health point of view, the HQ values for Al, Fe ‎‎(for all vegetables) and Ba (in dill, vine leaves, thymes, arugula, basil, common ‎‎purslane and ‎parsley) were higher than one, indicating potential non-cancer health risk due to exposure to ‎these metals. Furthermore, the HI value for all vegetables was higher than one, indicating ‎potential non-cancer health risk due to long-term exposure to these metals.


Download data is not yet available.


Indrayan AK, Sharma S, Durgapal D, Kumar N, Kumar M. Determination of nutritive value and analysis of mineral elements for some medicinally valued plants from Uttaranchal. Curr Sci. 2005 Oct; 10: 1252-55.

‎Soetan KO, Olaiya CO, Oyewole OE. The importance of mineral elements for humans, domestic animals and plants-A review. Afri J food Sci. 2010 May 31; 4(5): 200-22.

Kabata-Pendias A, Mukherjee AB. Humans. Springer Berlin Heidelberg [Internet]. 2007 [Cited 2022 march 6]: 57-65. Available from: URL

‎Nagajyoti PC, Lee KD, Sreekanth TV. Heavy metals, occurrence and toxicity for plants: a review. Environ Chem Lett. 2010 ‎Sep; 8(3):199-216. ‎

‎Dogan I, Ozyigit II, Demir G. Influence of aluminum on mineral nutrient uptake and accumulation in urtica Pilulifera L. J Plant Nutr. 2014 Feb 23; 37(3): 469-81.

‎Parvathy P, Murali VS, Devi VM, Murugan M, Jmaes JJ. ICP-MS assisted heavy metal analysis, phytochemical, proximate and antioxidant activities of Mimosa pudica L. Mater Today: Proc. 2021 Jan 1; 45: 2265-69.

Hamad AA, Alamer KH, Alrabie HS. The Accumulation Risk of Heavy Metals in Vegetables which Grown in Contaminated Soil. Baghdad Sci J. 2021; 18(3): 471-79.

‎Anjum S, Bazai ZA, Rizwan S, Benincasa C, Mehmood K, Siddique N, et al.. Elemental characterization of medicinal plants and soils from Hazarganji Chiltan National Park and nearby unprotected areas of Balochistan, Pakistan. J Oleo Sci. 2019; 68(5): 443-61.

‎Dzomba P, Chayamiti T, Togarepi E. Heavy metal content of selected raw medicinal plant materials: implication for patient health. Bull. Env. Pharmacol. Life Sci. 2012; 1: 28-33. ‎

‎Järup L. Hazards of heavy metal contamination. Brit Med Bull. 2003 Dec 1; 68(1):167-82.

‎Gajalakshmi S, Iswarya V, Ashwini R, Divya G, Mythili S, Sathiavelu A. Evaluation of heavy metals in medicinal plants growing in Vellore District. Eur J Exp Biol. 2012; 2(5):1457-61.

‎Tahar K, Keltoum B. Effects of heavy metals pollution in soil and plant in the industrial area, West Algeria. J Korean Chem Soc. 2011; 55(6):1018-23.

‎‎Asati A, Pichhode M, Nikhil K. Effect of heavy metals on plants: an overview. Int J Appl Innov Eng ‎Manag.2016; 5(3): 56-66.

Bradl, H. Heavy metals in the environment: origin, interaction and remediation, 1st edition, London: ‎Acad Press, 2005. 86 p. ‎

‎Nayak P. Aluminum: impacts and disease. Environ Res. 2002 Jun 1; 89(2):101-15.

‎Sah, RN. Brown, PH. Boron determination—a review of analytical methods. Microchemi J. 1997; 56: 285-304.

‎Kujawska J, Pawlowska M. Bioavailability of barium to Trifolium pratense L. in soils contaminated with drill cuttings. Int Agrophysics. 2019; 33(4): 417-26.

‎Pj W. Broadley MR. Calcium in plants. Ann Bot. 2003; 92(4): 487-511.

‎Harris ED. Minerals in food: Nutrition, metabolism, bioactivity. DEStech Publications, Inc; 2014 Jan 8. Available from

‎Minz A, Sinha AK, Kumar R, Kumar B, Deep KP, Kumar SB. A review on importance of cobalt in crop growth and ‎production. Int J Curr Microbiol Appl Sci. 2018 Aug; 7: 2978-84.‎

‎Hasanuzzaman M, Bhuyan MH, Nahar K, Hossain MD, Mahmud JA, Hossen M, et al. Potassium: a vital regulator of ‎plant responses and tolerance to abiotic stresses. Agronomy. 2018 Mar; 8 (3): 31

Abdulkareem EA, Abdulsattar JO, Abdulsattar BO. Iron (II) Determination in Lipstick Samples using Spectrophotometric and Microfluidic Paper-based Analytical Device (µPADs) Platform via Complexation Reaction with Iron Chelator 1, 10-phenanthroline: A Comparative Study. Baghdad Sci J. 2022; 19(2): 355-67.

‎Török AI, Moldovan A, Levei EA, Cadar O, Tănăselia C, Moldovan OT. Assessment of Lithium, Macro-and Microelements in Water, Soil and Plant Samples from Karst Areas in Romania. Materials. 2021 Jan; 14(14): 4002. .

‎Rude RK, Gruber HE. Magnesium deficiency and osteoporosis: animal and human observations. J Nutr Biochem. 2004 Dec 1; 15(12): 710-16.

‎Long S, Romani AM. Role of cellular magnesium in human diseases. Austin J Nutr Food Sci. [Internet]. 2014; 2(10): 1051. Available from:

‎‎Chaudhry AH, Nayab S, Hussain SB, Ali M, Pan Z. Current understandings on magnesium deficiency and future outlooks for sustainable agriculture. Int J Mol Sci. 2021; 22(4):1819. .

‎Senbayram M, Gransee A, Wahle V, Thiel H. Role of magnesium fertilisers in agriculture: plant–soil continuum. Crop Pasture Sci. 2015 Dec 21; 66(12): 1219-29.

Gezahegn WW, Srinivasulu A, Aruna B, Banerjee S, Sudarshan M, Narayana PL, et al. Study of heavy metals accumulation in leafy vegetables of Ethiopia. IOSR J Environ Sci Toxicol Food Technol (IOSR-JESTFT). 2017; 11(5): 57-68.

Weldegebriel Y, Chandravanshi BS, Wondimu T. Concentration levels of metals in vegetables grown in soils irrigated with river water in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Ecotoxicol Environ Saf.‎ 2012 Mar 1; 77: 57-63.

Foulkes ME, Sadee BA, Hill SJ. Arsenic speciation and its DNA fractionation in the rice plant Oryza sativa. J Anal Atom Spect. 2020; 35(9): 1989-2001.

‎Mohammadi AA, Zarei A, Majidi S, Ghaderpoury A, Hashempour Y, Saghi MH, et al. Carcinogenic and non-carcinogenic health risk assessment of heavy metals in drinking water of Khorramabad, Iran. Methodsx. 2019 Jan 1; 6: 1642-51.

‎Zakaria Z, Zulkafflee NS, Mohd Redzuan NA, Selamat J, Ismail MR, Praveena SM, et al. Understanding potential heavy metal contamination, absorption, translocation and accumulation in rice and human health risks. Plants. [2021 Jun; 10 (6): 1070. .

‎‎World Health Organization, Joint FAO/WHO Workshop on Fruit and Vegetables for Health, 2005. [Cited 2022 Feb 16]. Available from ‎

‎Gebreyohannes F, Gebrekidan A. Health risk assessment of heavy metals via consumption of spinach vegetable grown in Elalla river. Bull Chem Soc Ethiop‎. 2018 Apr 12; 32(1): 65-75.

‎Meseret M, Ketema G, Kassahun H. Health risk assessment and determination of some heavy metals in commonly consumed traditional herbal preparations in Northeast Ethiopia. J Chem.[Internet]. 2020 Dec 8. [cited 2022 Feb 20]; 2020: 1-7. .

‎Antoine JM, Fung LA, Grant CN. Assessment of the potential health risks associated with the aluminium, arsenic, cadmium and lead content in selected fruits and vegetables grown in Jamaica. Toxicol Rep. 2017 Jan 1; 4:181-87.

‎Dallas E, Phillip L. Williams C. Barium: rationale for a new oral reference dose. J Toxicol Environ Health Part B: Crit Rev. 2001 Oct 1; 4(4): 395-429.

‎Sultana MS, Rana S, Yamazaki S, Aono T, Yoshida S. Health risk assessment for carcinogenic and non-carcinogenic heavy metal exposures from vegetables and fruits of Bangladesh. Cogent environ. Sci.‎ 2017 Jan 1; 3 (1):1291107.

‎Kamunda C, Mathuthu M, Madhuku M. Health risk assessment of heavy metals in soils from Witwatersrand Gold Mining Basin, South Africa. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2016 Jul; 13(7): 663.

Javed M, Usmani N. Accumulation of heavy metals and human health risk assessment via the consumption of freshwater fish Mastacembelus armatus inhabiting, thermal power plant effluent loaded canal. Springer Plus. 2016 Dec; 5(1): 1-8.

‎‎Uluozlu OD, Tuzen M, Mendil D, Soylak M. Assessment of trace element contents of chicken products from Turkey. J. Hazard. Mater. 2009 Apr 30; 163(2-3): 982-87.

‎Nordberg, GF. Fowler, BA. Nordberg, M. Handbook on the Toxicology of Metals. 4th ed. Academic press, 2014. 339 p.

‎Nielsen FH. Boron in human and animal nutrition. Plant Soil. 1997 Jun; 193(1):199-208.

‎‎Monteiro FA, Nogueirol RC, Melo LC, Artur AG, da Rocha F. Effect of barium on growth and macronutrient nutrition in Tanzania guineagrass grown in nutrient solution. Comms Soil Sci Plant Analy. 2011 Jul 1; 42(13):1510-21.

‎World Health Organization, Barium in Drinking-water: Background Document for Development of WHO ‎Guidelines for Drinking-Water Quality. (No. WHO/SDE/WSH/03.04/76), 2004. [Cited 2022 Jan 15]. Available from

‎‎Ross AC, Taylor CL, Yaktine AL, Del Valle HB. Dietary reference intakes for adequacy: calcium and vitamin D. InDietary reference intakes for calcium and vitamin D. National Academies Press (US). 2011. 349 p.

‎Turck D, Bresson, J.‐L, Burlingame B, ‎Dean T, Fairweather‐Tait S, Heinonen M. et al. EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA), Dietary reference values for vitamin K. EFSA J. 2017 May; 15 (5) 4780. ‎‎

‎Schrauzer GN. Lithium: occurrence, dietary intakes, nutritional essentiality. J Am Coll Nutr. 2002 Feb 1; 21(1):14-21.

‎‎European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), Panel (EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies), Scientific Opinion on the evaluation ‎of allergenic foods and food ingredients for labelling purposes. EFSA J. 2014; 12: 3894. ‎

‎European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). Outcome of public consultations on the Scientific Opinions of the EFSA Panel on Nutrition, Novel Foods and Food Allergens (NDA) on Dietary Reference Values for sodium and chloride. 2019 Sep.; 16 (9): EN-1679. https:// doi:10.2903/sp.efsa.2019.EN-1679.