Think Before You Drink: Are Your Glasses Tainted With Lead?
Researchers at the University of Plymouth in England recently conducted nearly 200 tests on more than 70 new and second-hand pieces of glass drinkware and discovered that a number of the products contained toxic levels of lead and cadmium. In some cases, levels of lead on the surface and rim of the drinking glasses were nearly 1,000 times higher than the recommended limit.
According to the researchers, sustained use of glass tumblers, beer and wine glasses, and jars can result in flakes of enamel and glaze breaking away and being swallowed. For the study, researchers used portable X-ray fluorescence (XRF) spectrometry to analyze the drinkware. More than 70 percent of products tested positive for lead and/or cadmium.
This study is part of a large body of research evaluating toxic substances in everyday items. Results of the study, which were published in Science of the Total Environment, also suggest that children may be at risk from ingesting flakes of paint from play equipment.