Food Toxicology 2(2+0)
Lesson 16 : Toxicity of Nutrients


  1. Carbohydrates
    Milk sugar intolerance is prevalent in populations from the Far and Middle East and Africa. These individuals have difficulty digesting lactose, and, when they do ingest lactose, they experience gastric distress, cramping, and diarrhea. The intolerance is because such individuals lack the enzyme lactase to break down lactose to monosaccharide for absorption.

  2. Lipids
    A number of plants used for natural foods may harbor lipids that can adversely affect consumers. Examples include erucic acid found in the oils obtained from rapeseed oil and mustard seed oil. Erucic acid has been shown to cause heart damage in experimental animals. Traditional rapeseed oil contains 20 to 55% erucic acid, whereas processed oil, i.e., canola, contains less than 2% of the fatty acid. The primary toxicity issue for lipids is their role in chronic diseases such as heart disease and cancer.

  3. Protein
    Proteins are implicated in allergic reactions or hypersensitivity. Animal studies have shown that excessive ingestion of protein can lead to liver and kidney hypertrophy. Studies on humans have shown that the ingestion of high-protein diets increases calcium excretion.

Last modified: Thursday, 23 February 2012, 10:27 AM