Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Melamine anyone?? Yes? Errr No???

Warning: The author takes no responsibility for whatsoever interpretation that the reader may perceive from this article.

Everyone seems to have gone on a melamine fear mode nowadays. Who would not, with reports of cases involving babies. This fear created a lot of unchecked claims floating about in cyberspace, resulting in a lot of food dumping. I have friends who were throwing out their ice-cream, W*** mini-po**ers (cannot say the brand, nanti kena saman pulak) etc.

Fact is, melamine is a low toxicity compound. Unfortunately, it is most likely contaminated with another low toxicity compound, cyanuric acid. The two together, makes a whole different story. It is postulated that melamine and cyanuric acid allows the formation of crystals in your kidneys- hence your nephrons becomes clogged and fail.

Now, WHO (World Health Organisation) has an interesting article on Melamine dose. And I quote from this article:

"Considering a TDI of 0.5 mg/kg body weight, this would lead for a 50kg person to a tolerable amount of 25 mg melamine per day. Assuming this person would drink one litre of milk per day, this would indicate that the TDI would be reached at a level of 25 mg melamine per litre of milk. This level then would be considered as the 'level of concern'.

Considering a 5kg infant, the tolerable amount of melamine would be 2.5 mg per day. This amount would be reached when consuming 750 ml liquid (or reconstituted) formula contaminated at a level around 3.3 mg/l (ppm)."

Now where is my bag of Lemon Puffs? Yum yum.

List of products tested compliant by Ministry of Health, Malaysia (MOH)
List of products NOT involved in the melamine contamination scare, MOH
List of products tested NOT COMPLIANT by MOH