Microplastics found in the blood of cows and pigs

The meat you buy in stores can be contaminated with microplastics. A recent study from the Free University of Amsterdam found microplastics in the blood of pigs and cows for the first time. The results raised questions about public health, with experts voicing fears about contaminants that could affect the entire food chain.

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Previous studies have found microplastics in vegetables, birds and marine animals, but this is the first time that plastic particles have been found in the blood of farm animals. Study lead investigator and microplastics expert Dr. Heather Leslie said, “Hundreds of other animals have microplastics in their bodies as well. But in cows and pigs, this had never been discovered before.

Related: New Study Finds Microplastics in Fruits and Vegetables

The study involved 12 cows and six pigs, all of which tested positive for the presence of microplastics. According to Dr. Leslie, microplastics found in the soil likely ended up in crops eaten by animals. Since the particles cannot be broken down by the body, they remain in the bloodstream for years.

Microplastics are already present in water, soil, air and food. Scientists are now taking a closer look at the impact of these contaminants. Several studies have linked the particles to health complications such as an overreaction, inflammation, and an increased risk of heart disease.

“If you want to assess the risks, you first need to know what the actual exposure is and how toxic it is. If we are above values ​​that are always safe and responsible, then we have to do something, ”Leslie said.

Researchers now say humans must act to determine the extent of plastic pollution in the food chain in order to protect both animals and humans. “It is in the interest of protecting animal and human health to further explore this emerging signal of exposure to plastic pollution in the food chain,” said Leslie.

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