According to new research by a Harvard University team of experts, there is a high concentration of chemicals in the tap water of six million Americans. The water has dangerous levels of industrial chemicals which can lead to serious health problems.
The chemicals are known as polyfluoroalkyl and perfrluoroalkyl substances (also called PFASs). They have been previously used for tens of years in commercial and industrial products, like non-stick coatings on pans, food wrappers, fire retardant foam and water resistant clothing. Long-term exposure to these chemicals is linked to an increased risk of kidney cancer, a potential risk of thyroid problems, high cholesterol or disruption of hormones – among other issues.
Other places where these chemicals can be found is the surrounding water of military bases, civilian airports and manufacturers who use the chemicals to produce Teflon.
Apparently, most Americans are exposed to these chemicals. Study lead author, Xindi Hu, knows that these chemicals never break down. Once they get into the environment, they stay there.
The study was published on Tuesday in Environmental Science and Technology Letters. It looked at concentrations for several types of PFAS in tap water supplies across America. Results came from over thirty-six thousand samples, taken by the Environmental Protection agency.
Findings were surprising, as 194 water supplies out of 4,864 had detectable levels of the chemical compounds. Sixty-six of those went over the safety limit for PFAS.
That makes it a big problem for many communities, as Richard Clapp, Professor at Boston’s University School of Public Health puts it.
Currently, PFAS are not regulated by the federal government. But they are monitored by the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency).
These chemicals represent immunotoxins for children and recent studies suggest that the safety levels should be much lower than those established by the EPA.
In studies on animals, some PFAS have been shown to cause increased toxicity of the liver, disruption of the immune, endocrine and metabolic system, neurotoxicity, and even death.
This could influence children’s response to vaccines, lower weight size at birth, obesity, and delayed puberty.
What’s your opinion on this article? Do you think your tap water is safe to drink? Have you ever taken it for an analysis? Leave a comment below. Thank you!
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