Reprinted with permission from " Health Express" , Jan./Feb.
DOES CHLORINATION CAUSE
CANCER AND HEART DISEASE ?
Worse, the chlorine can combine with those same dangerous pollutants in water to form such carcinogens as chloroform, carbon tetrachloride, bischloroethane, and other chemicals collectively labeled trihalomethanes.
At the start of the 1980's more than 300 different organic chemicals had already been identified in American drinking water. Most of these are likely contributors to the ever-increasing rate of malignancy among our populace: from one in five people coming down with cancer ten years ago, to one in four today. Over 800,000 U.S. citizens are cancer victims each year. Chronic exposure to carcinogens from drinking one and half or more quarts of water every day of your life provides a significant cumulative health hazard.
In effect, drinking tap water is hazardous to your health.
Cancers of the kidney, bladder, and urinary tract are common in New Orleans, for example than any other American city, Why ? Because the Mississippi drains agricultural chemicals into the water supply. New Orleans takes its tap water from the great polluted river flowing by its door and chlorinates the pollutants in excess of governmental standards to insure against infectious disease. Thus sixty-six new carcinogenic compounds are created in Mississippi drinking water when chlorine combines with methanol, carbon disulfide, and others.
" Although the concentrations of these carcinogens are low," said a report issued by the Environmental Defense Fund, a Washington-based environmental group, " it is precisely these low levels which cancer scientists believe are responsible for the majority of human cancers in the United States."
The potent cancer-causing trihalomethanes, created by the chlorination process itself,
come about when chlorine combines with natural organic mattersuch as decaying vegetation. then, trihalomethane chemicals, such as chloroform and bromoform, are formed to permeate a city's water system. They are known also to be prime causative agents of atherosclerosis ans its inevitable result, the heart attack or stroke.
Joseph M. Price, M.D., attending physician at Saginaw, Michigan, says, " In the process of atherogenesis, chlorine is the essential agent." (Atherogenesis does not occurto a clinically significant degree in the absence of chlorine regardless of diet and other contributing factors)
"Chlorine is the greatest crippler and killer of modern times," he declares. " It is an insidious poison. Most medical researchers were led to believe it was safe, but we're now learning the hard way that all the time we were preventing epidemics of one disease, we were creating another. Two decades after the start of chlorinating our drinking water in 1904, the present epidemic of heart trouble and cancer began."
Furthermore, Dr. Price strongly suggests that senility of the agedreally is a combination disease with a single cause - chlorine. The blood flow to the brain becomes impaired, not only by the development of atherosclerotic plaques in the arteries feeding the brain, but also by a direct impairment of the micro-circulation of the brain itself- a second and distinct result of chlorine ingestion.
CHLORINE AND HEART
He counts chlorination of city drinking water as the major cause of hardening of the arteries, heart disease, senility, stroke, and other degenerative disease, especially of the cardiovascular system. "It is my opinion," says Dr. Price, " certainly one of the greatest paradoxes of recorded history that one of the very same public health measures which has been primarily responsible for the great increase in statistical life expectancy in the Western world should also unsuspectedly be responsible for many of many of the chronic disorders of later life.