Microplastics have been found in human stools for the first
time, according to a study suggesting the tiny particles may be widespread in
the human food chain.
The small study examined eight participants from Europe,
Japan and Russia. All of their stool samples were found to contain microplastic
Up to nine different plastics were found out of 10 varieties
tested for, in particles of sizes ranging from 50 to 500 micrometres.
Polypropylene and polyethylene terephthalate were the plastics most commonly
On average, 20 particles of microplastic were found in each
10g of excreta. Microplastics are defined as particles of less than 5mm, with
some created for use in products such as cosmetics but also by the breaking
down of larger pieces of plastic, often in the sea.