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‘Consumption of arecanut affects health adversely’

Our Bureau Mangaluru | Updated on July 12, 2019 Published on July 12, 2019

The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has indicated that consumption of arecanut has adverse impact on human health.

To a question from Devusinh Jesingbhai Chauhan in the Lok Sabha on Friday whether the consumption of arecanut had any adverse impact on health, Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Ashwini Kumar Choubey said: “There are certain studies suggesting that arecanut has adverse health effects on various organs of the body. There are also concerns regarding it being carcinogenic to the oral cavity, pharynx, oesophagus etc.”

On the provisions laid down by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) with regard to gutkha, pan masala and other sweet/scented/flavoured arecanut products and chewing tobacco in the country, the Minister replied that the standards of arecanuts or betelnuts or supari and paan masala are prescribed under Food Safety and Standards (Food Product Standards and Food Additives) Regulations 2011.

“Gutka, sweet/scented/flavoured arecanut products and chewing tobacco are not separately mentioned in these regulations,” he said, adding that the use of tobacco and nicotine as ingredients in any food product is prohibited.

It may be mentioned here that Anupriya Patel, who was Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare during 2017, had informed the Lok Sabha on December 22, 2017 that the consumption of supari (arecanut) causes periodontitis, buccal mucositis, sub-mucous fibrosis and leucoplakia, leading to oral squamous cell cancer.

Published on July 12, 2019
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