The water that comes out of your kitchen faucet carries with it a steady stream of chemical by-products that are known to cause cancer, heart disease, and reproductive harm. Since the turn of the century chlorine has been used to treat the nation's drinking water, virtually eliminating disease-causing bacteria and viruses. When first used in 1908, it was viewed as the perfect treatment, on e that kept us free of waterborne illnesses while creating no ill effects on your health. So much more is known about chlorine these days, and the error of our ways is beginning to become apparent; they have been tied to an increase in heart disease and cancer-related deaths.
The problem with chlorine is actually in the by-products, called organochlorines, created when it mixes with organic materials, such as leaves, algae, or even human skin. There are thousands of different chlorine by-products, and very few of them have been studied for safety or are being tracked in our water reserves. While these by -products don't cause immediate illness, such as typhoid or dysentery, they have long term effects that are not as easy to study or link to any one health ailment.
There are several classes of by-products, the most studied being trihalomethanes (THMs), which occur when chlorine combines with methane. A common THM found in water is chloroform, a known carcinogen. As a matter of fact, a large number of THMs are known or suspected carcinogens, but they are allowed to remain in our water at minimal levels, even though research has shown those minimal levels are capable of causing cancer.
Toxins In The Body
Chlorine and its by-products enter the body through ingestion, inhalation, and skin absorption. As the shower water heats up, the by-products turn to vapor, making them easy to inhale. At the same time, the heat also enlarges the pores in the skin, allowing for easy absorption. Chlorine by-products do not break down quickly and are generally stored within the fatty tissues of the body, where they can alter DNA, suppress immune function and interfere with natural cell growth. The by-products also generate free radicals that can cause cancer, while destroying the intestinal flora ("good" bacteria) that protects the body from pathogens.
Chlorine and Cancer
Evidence of this was displayed in a study conducted in Hartford, Connecticut, which found that women with breast cancer have 50% to 60% higher levels of organochlorines in their breast tissue than women without breast cancer.
Chlorine by-products have been linked to several types of cancer, including cancers of the bladder, liver, rectum, and colon. A study at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Maryland concluded, "people living in areas served by chlorinated water have twice the risk of contracting cancer," than those who have non-chlorinated water sources.
10 Other Toxins That May Be Lurking In Your Water
3 Steps of Action
To learn more about the rippling effects of chlorinated water, pick up a copy of my book "Be PerfectlyHealthy" by visiting http://www.perfectlyhealthy.com/ProductDetails.aspx?ProductID=BE-Perfectly-Healthy-Book.