Chlorine has been used as an effective disinfectant in drinking water supplies for nearly 100 years. Chlorine is considered necessary to destroy many of the bacteria in your drinking water.
If it cleanses your water, then what is the problem?
Health officials are concerned with the chlorinating by-products, also known as “chlorinated hydrocarbons” or trihalomethanes (THM’s). Most THM’s are formed in drinking water when chlorine reacts with naturally occurring substances such as decomposing plant and animal materials. Risk for certain types of cancer are now being correlated to the consumption of chlorinated drinking water. The President’s Council on Environmental Quality states that “there is increased evidence for an association between rectal, colon and bladder cancer and the consumption of chlorinated drinking water.” Suspected carcinogens make the human body more vulnerable through repeated ingestion and research indicates the incidence of cancer is 44% higher among those using chlorinated water.
Even though the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) adopted new regulations in 1980 for cities to lower the chlorination by-products in water to level not exceeding 100 parts per billion, experts believe that it still doesn’t provide proper safeguards and should be strengthened. Unfortunately, there is a little likelihood that the use of chlorine will be discontinued since it is currently the most economically acceptable chemical for bacterial control at this time. It is ironic that the process of chlorination, by which we cleanse our water of infectious organisms, can create cancer-causing substances from otherwise innocent chemicals in water.
“Chlorine is the greatest crippler and killer of modern times. While it prevented epidemics of one disease, it was creating another. Two decades ago, after the start of chlorinating our drinking water in 1904, the epidemic of heart trouble, cancer and senility began.”
J.M. Price, MD
“Taking long hot showers is a health risk, according to research presented last week in Anaheim, California, at a meeting of the American Chemical Society. Showers – and to a lesser extent baths – lead to a greater exposure to toxic chemicals contain din water supplies than does drinking the water. The chemicals evaporate out of the water and are inhaled. They can also spread through the house and be inhaled by others. House holders can receive 6 to 100 times more of the chemical by breathing the air around showers and bath than they would by drinking the water.”
NEW SCIENTIST, 18 September 1996
“Scientists found there was a higher incidence of cancer of the esophagus, rectum, breast, and larynx and of Hodgkins Disease among those drinking chlorinated surface waters.”
“Volatile organics can evaporate from water in a shower or bath.”
“Conservative calculations indicate that inhalation exposures can be as significant as exposure from drinking the water, that is, one can be exposed to just as much by inhalation during a shower as by drinking 2 liters of water a day.” “People who shower frequently could be exposed through ingestion, inhalation and/or dermal absorption.”
IS YOUR WATER SAFE TO DRINK?
Consumer Reports Books
Chlorine’s Health Effects
In addition to diet and exercise, maintaining optimum health involves controlling toxic pollutants commonly found indoors. Many people who suffer from allergies find their complaints aggravated by substances that have become part of everyday life. Whether we like it or not, most of us spend 70 to 90% of our time indoors, bombarding our immune systems with chemicals and irritants from carpeting, cleaning products, tobacco smoke, pesticides, dust, plastics, fiberglass, asbestos, automobile exhaust, and even the chlorine that is routinely added to municipal water supplies. Young children, the elderly, and the chronically ill are among the most noticeably affected. The American Medical Association reports a 75% increase in asthma cases since 1984. “Sick buildings” are routinely reported in newspapers and magazines, largely the result of poorly circulated air, toxins emitted by plastics and other. synthetic materials, and out-gassing of paints and chemically treated wood. A “sick building” is defined as one where more than 20% of a building’s occupants report illnesses that are building related, with symptoms such as skin rashes, nose bleeds, headaches, mental fatigue, eye, nose and throat irritation, nausea and dizziness.
Removal of Chlorine from Showers
In confined spaces, such as a shower or bathroom, we can sometimes smell chlorine. Frequent exposure to chlorine gas even at the low levels found during normal activities such as showering may reduce the oxygen transfer capacity of the lungs.
When we shower, we also expose our skin to a large amount of diluted chlorine. It’s likely, given the strong oxidizing power of chlorine, that regular exposure to chlorinated water will hasten the skin’s aging process. Fortunately, over the last ten years, water filters have become more sophisticated and it is now possible to remove chlorine from your home shower.
Article taken from the website http://www.triangularwave.com/
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