Honors Program


Date of this Version

Spring 3-20-2023

Document Type



Keza, O. 2023. A Comprehensive Review of the Relationship between Nitrate Contamination, Nitrate Consumption, and Adverse Health Outcomes. Undergraduate Honors Thesis. University of Nebraska - Lincoln.


Copyright Ornella Uwayo Keza 2023.


Access to safe and clean drinking water is a fundamental human right, yet many people in the United States face challenges in accessing clean water. Agricultural contamination and aging infrastructure are major challenges in the United States that can lead to water pollution. Nebraska is one such state that has been grappling with concerns over drinking water safety due to the increasing incidence of chemicals and nutrients in its drinking water. Nitrate and nitrite remain two of the top contaminants in Nebraska drinking water, affecting more people compared to other harmful contaminants. While maximum nitrate contamination levels in drinking water have been established, a clear and unambiguous connection between exposure to nitrate and health risk has yet to be established in the literature. Exposure to agrochemicals has been linked to a range of health problems, including cancer, birth defects, neurological disorders, and endocrine disruption. Children and pregnant women are particularly vulnerable to the harmful effects of agrochemicals.