Friday, March 18, 2011

How to avoid chances of cancer

Excessive swimming or taking long baths in chlorinated water may increase the risk of developing bladder cancer, a new study has claimed.

A team of Spanish scientists found that cancer-causing chemicals called trihalomethanes (THM), which are created as a byproduct of chlorinating water, can be absorbed through the skin. And people who regularly swim in chlorinated pools or take lots of showers or long baths are actually absorbing too much THM, putting themselves at risk of developing cancer, the Daily Mail reported.

For their study, the researchers examined 1270 people and found those, who drank more bottled water to avoid the health risks posed by drinking tap water, actually lose the beneficial effects by swimming more and taking more showers. "People with more money are more education may think that they're reducing their risk of exposure to water contaminants by drinking bottled water," said Gemma CastaqoVinyals from the Centre for Research in Environment Epidemiology (CREAL) in Castilla LaMancha Spain.

"However, despite being apparently cleaner and taking more exercise, a result of taking frequent and longer baths, and using swimming pools more often - they are actually increasing their risk of THM exposure."

However Castaqo-Vinyals added that the additional risk of developing bladder cancer through the water contaminants was "small". The new findings were reported in the online journal BioMed Central.

While it is true that Chlorine water can be used to make water safe because it kills bacteria, it can also be dangerous. Water treatment plants use chlorine to kill bacteria, as well as algae that can clog up the pipes. However, it is used not because it is the most effective solution, but because it is the cheapest. It is also widely used by industry as a bleaching agent, which means that there is bleach in the water that comes out of the tap to be drunk or used in swimming pools. And chlorinated water does not have to be drunk in order to enter the body. It can be readily absorbed by the skin while swimming. Although chlorine is great for killing bacteria, it can not differentiate between good bacteria and bad ones.

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