Recently, researchers proclaimed that a number of everyday products contain substances that receive little attention but may pose potential cancer threats. Each chemical compound received a rating based on a scale of 1 to 5.
1. Laundry Detergents
Hazard level: 3
While removing dirt and grime, detergents may leave behind this toxic chemical. An environmental group discovered the compound hiding in laundry detergents in 2011. The substance has been shown to produce tumors in laboratory animals. The chemical is not listed as an ingredient. Look for products containing PEG, polyethylene, polyethylene glycol or polyoxyethylene. Researchers recommend switching to green cleaners that include Clorox Green Works.
2. Wrinkle-Free Shirts
Hazard level: 2
The chemical contributes to the crispness of wrinkle-free shirts and other clothing. Formaldehyde has been linked to nasal or respiratory cancers. Scientists recommend laundering these items at least one time before wearing. The action decreases formaldehyde levels by up to 60%. Alternately, purchase clothing that requires ironing.
3. Bread, Chips and French Fries
Hazard level: 3
When certain carbohydrate rich foods are prepared at high temperatures, the amino acid that they contain known as asparagine reacts with sugar and forms acrylamide. Commonly used in waste water treatment plants, the chemical can cause DNA mutations, which raise the risk of developing cancer.
Soak potatoes for around two hours before frying. Resist the urge to fry foods until brown.
4. Styrofoam Containers and Cups
Hazard level: 1
While many environmentalists prefer eliminating these products because they are not biodegradable, the chemical also causes cellular DNA damage. Using these containers for hot foods and liquids also increases the likelihood of styrene leakage into foods. If plastic containers display the number “6” on the bottom, they contain polystyrene.
5. Brown Rice
Hazard level: 5
Once only a chemical used by would be medieval assassins, a consumer reports analysis determined that many brands of brown rice contains this toxic chemical. When consumed, the compounds prevents cellular DNA from making necessary repairs. When preparing the grain, maintain a water to rice ratio of 6 to 1 and drain the water when done.
Hazard level: Depends on amount found
Radon is a gas that occurs from the natural deterioration of uranium in rock, soil and water. Levels vary across the country. The airborne substance is inhaled from the air. Test kits determine a possible hazard. It is quite easy these days to find radon maps of your area. Depending on where you are located there are official chemical tracking maps such as The Radon Map of UK. These can be helpful to be aware of the chemical and how much you could be exposed too.
Not everyone exposed to these chemicals will automatically develop cancer. For a variety of reasons, some people may have a greater genetic disposition than others. Nonetheless, avoiding known contaminants decreases the likelihood of facing a possible diagnosis.
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