Study: Some Sindoor Powder Used by Hindus Tainted With Lead

UNITED NEWS INTERNATIONAL (UNI) — Some sindoor powder may have unsafe levels of lead in it.

Sindoor is often used by Hindu women who wear a bindi, or red dot.

Married Hindu women also may put it in the parting of their hair.

A study published last month in the American Journal of Public Health analyzed sindoor powder sold in the United States and India.

The results showed about 80 percent of samples had at least some lead, and about a third exceeded limits set by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

The study says manufacturers often use lead tetroxide to give sindoor its distinctive red color.

However, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says even low levels of lead can affect IQ and academic achievement.

Study author Dr. Derek Shendell told Reuters lead-tainted sindoor is a public health issue, saying, “There’s a possibility of spread through ingestion or inhalation.”