Top Medical Body ICMR Advises People To Buy Whole Spices To Avoid Adulteration

Indian cuisine is known for its vibrant taste and use of spices. Not only do they enhance the taste of the food, but also make it nutritious. As several cases of food adulteration have come to the limelight in the recent past, India’s top medical body – the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) – recommends people buy whole spices rather than powdered ones, as the latter is more prone to adulteration and potential health hazards. The guideline is mentioned on page 95 of the PDF “Dietary Guidelines for Indians,” and offers advice on choosing safe and clean foods and making sure they are free from contaminants. Elaborating on how to select safe foods, the medical body advises caution while buying spices for food.

Also Read: Spice Samples From MDH, Everest, Clear Food Authority Tests: Sources

They wrote, “Since powdered spices are more likely to be adulterated, whole spices, uniform in colour, size and shape should be preferred. Always buy certified products.” The guideline comes after popular spice brands MDH and Everest came under the investigation radar for their products.

To help Indians in making better dietary and food choices, the ICMR along with the National Institute of Nutrition, published a 17-chapter guideline for people across ages.

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How Should You Select Safe Food?

In the same guideline, the ICMR gave a list of other grocery products and mentioned how can you ensure that they are safe to consume. “Selection of safe food is the first step to ensure a healthy and good quality diet. Food items purchased from reliable sources increase the chances of getting good quality and fresh food.” Aside from spices, the medical body mentioned:

1. Vegetable Cooking Oils

The ICMR states that the risk of adulterated oils/fats increases when purchased loose from unsealed containers. Therefore, it is always safer to buy it from a reliable source.

2. Milk and Milk Products

The medical body advises to purchase only pasteurized milk. “Butter, ghee and khoa should be purchased from reliable sources only,” they wrote.

3. Fruits and vegetables

The ICMR suggests avoiding fruits and vegetables that are “discoloured, physically damaged, shrunken, bruised or wilted and decayed, with visible evidence of insects and moulds.”

4. Eggs/Meat/Poultry

As per the medical body, eggs should be fresh and free from cracks before you buy them. Aside from that, meat and poultry items should be thoroughly examined for colour, odour and texture. Such products should be purchased fresh or frozen.

Also Read: Spice Row: Food Authority Finds No Trace Of Toxins In MDH, Everest Spice Samples

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