Taylor & Francis
Faculty of Health, Engineering and Science
School of Medical Sciences
Children’s dietary exposure to metals has received limited attention in Australia. This study undertook a market basket survey and analysed 253 food and beverages for metals. These data were used in conjunction with recent average diet data for children in Western Australia to model dietary metals exposure, with mean metals intakes calculated for boys and girls aged 8, 12, 13 and 16 years. Results show that for some metals, including cadmium, nickel and manganese, dietary intake guidelines have been exceeded in younger children. The mean modelled cadmium intake in children aged 8 years was almost 60% of the World Health Organisation (WHO) guideline and exceeded the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) guideline. Nickel and manganese intake was higher in younger children than reported in international studies. Modelling based on the 95% percentile of dietary consumption exceeded the respective guidelines or upper level of intake for several of the metals studied. The findings from this study support the need for further investigation into the exposure of children to metals from diet and the health implications of exposure.