Pool chemicals linked to disease
A recent study out of the University of Illinois (U of I) links pool disinfectant chemicals with diseases like asthma and bladder cancer. According to researchers, pool chemicals react with organic matter in the water to form various toxic bonds that can lead to serious health problems.
"All sources of water possess organic matter that comes from decaying leaves, microbes and other dead life forms. In addition to organic matter and disinfectants, pool waters contain sweat, hair, skin, urine, and consumer products such as cosmetics and sunscreens from swimmers," explained Michael Plewa, a professor of genetics at U of I.
Unlike drinking water, which is exposed to disinfectants once before reaching the public, pool water is exposed to a continuous stream of disinfectants that mix and match with various other chemicals and compounds to form an unknown number of potentially dangerous chemical bonds.
According to researchers, these bonds can cause gene mutation, birth defects, respiratory problems, accelerated aging and even cancer.
"Care should be taken in selecting disinfectants to treat recreational pool water," urged Plewa. "The data suggest that brominating agents should be avoided as disinfectants of recreational pool water."
Plewa suggests that public pools be treated with a combination of both chlorine and ultraviolet (UV) radiation rather than these other toxic agents, but other research suggests that UV treatment alone may be effective, at least for home pools.
In his book Bottom Line's Health Breakthroughs 2007 (http://www.naturalpedia.com/book_Bottom_Lines_Health_Breakthroughs.html
), Dr. Martin Schwellnus suggests that public pools using chlorine keep their chlorine levels below five parts per million (ppm). He also advocates for UV treatment as well.
Sources for this story include:http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2010-07/uoic-rlr072110.phphttp://www.naturalpedia.com/chlorine.html