Harmful effects of Chlorine on our body
We don’t use chlorine because it’s the safest or even the most effective means of disinfection, we use it because it is the cheapest. Simply stated chlorine is a pesticide, as defined by the U.S. EPA, whose sole purpose is to kill living organisms. When we consume water containing chlorine, it destroys cells and kills our cells and tissues inside our body.
Chlorine and Cancer
When chlorine is added to our water it reacts with other natural compounds to form Trihalomethanes which are by-products of chlorine. These by-products produce free radicals in the body, which trigger cell damage, and are highly carcinogenic and are considered to be key reasons for the majority of human cancers in countries like the United States of America.
“Cancer risk among people drinking chlorinated water is 93% higher than among those whose water does not contain chlorine.” – U.S. Council Of Environmental Quality
“50-60% higher levels of chlorination in the breast tissue of women with breast cancer than women without breast cancer” – Study Findings, Breast Cancer Research (Hartford, CT)
“We are quite convinced, based on this study, that there is an association between cancer and chlorinated water.” ‐ Medical College of Wisconsin research team
The long-term effects of chlorinated water have just recently started to be observed. Past research has indicated it may be a contributor resulting in cancer. However, there is no conclusive published research data to back these findings.
How do we come in contact with chlorine?
- Drinking water
- Swimming pools
Contact with Chlorine: Drinking water
Until recently, concerns about drinking water focused on eliminating pathogens. The chlorine used to reduce the risk of infectious disease may account for a substantial portion of the cancer risk associated with drinking water
“Drinking chlorinated water may as much as double the risk of Bladder Cancer, which strikes 40,000 people a year.” – NEW SCIENTIST 18 September 1986
“On one hand, chlorination has freed civilization form the constant dangers of waterborne epidemics. On the other hand in the mid–70’s scientists discovered that chlorination could create carcinogens in water.” “80% of the population drinks chlorinated water.” “There was a higher incidence of cancer of the esophagus, rectum, breast, and larynx and of Hodgkin’s Disease among those drinking chlorinated surface waters.” “Volatile organics can evaporate from water in a shower or bath.” “Conservative calculations indicate that inhalation exposure can be as significant as exposure from drinking the water, that is, one can be exposed to just as much by inhalation and/or dermal absorption.” – BOTTOM LINE/August 87 – Dr. John Andelman, Ph.D
Contact with Chlorine : Showering
One of the most shocking components to all of these studies is that up to 2/3s of our harmful exposure to chlorine is due to inhalation of steam and skin absorption while showering. A warm shower opens up the pores of the skin and allows for accelerated absorption of chlorine and other chemicals in water. The steam we inhale while showering can contain up to 50 times the level of chemicals than tap water due to the fact that chlorine and most other contaminants vaporize much faster and at a lower temperature than water. Inhalation is a much more harmful means of exposure since the chlorine gas (chloroform) we inhale goes directly into our blood stream. When we drink contaminated water the toxins are partially filtered out by our kidneys and digestive system. Chlorine vapors are known to be a strong irritant to the sensitive tissue and bronchial passages inside our lungs; it was used as a chemical weapon in World War II. The inhalation of chlorine is a suspected cause of asthma and bronchitis, especially in children, which has increased 300% in the last two decades
A Professor of Water Chemistry at the University of Pittsburgh claims that exposure to vaporized chemicals in the water supplies through showering, bathing, and inhalation is 100 times greater than through drinking water.” “As chlorine is added to kill pathogenic microorganisms, the highly reactive chlorine combines with fatty acids and carbon fragments to form a variety of toxic compounds, which comprise about 30% of the chlorination by–products.” “During the mid-1970’s monitoring efforts began to identify widespread toxic contamination of the nation’s drinking water supplies, epidemiological studies began to suggest a link between ingestion of toxic chemicals in the water and elevated cancer mortality risks. Since those studies were completed a variety of additional studies have strengthened the statistical connection between consumption of toxins in water and elevated cancer risks. Moreover, this basic concern has been heightened by other research discoveries – ENVIROMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY – Dr. Lance Wallace