Most of our patients are doing everything they can to get better, including evaluating their daily habits to see what might have a negative effect on their health goals. We get a lot of questions, so we wanted to address a couple of the most common ones about cell phone radiation and the safety of tap water. Cell phones and microwaves do emit radiation, and tap water can have some harmful substances in it, but cell phones are unavoidable, and you need water to live, so what can you do about it? Let’s take a closer look at these issues and some possible solutions.
Cell Phones, Microwaves, and Radiation
You may have heard that cell phones and microwaves emit radiation, and this is true. Cell phones do emit radiofrequency radiation, which is a form of non-ionizing radiation. Non-ionizing radiation has not been shown to damage DNA the way ionizing radiation has, but it does increase the temperature of the body part near it. This is how microwaves work, by emitting high levels of radiofrequency radiation that causes the water molecules in food to move, creating friction which leads to an increase in temperature that heats up your food. However, the radiation used in microwaves has not been found to alter the food it is used on. The potential danger of microwaves is in the small electromagnetic field it generates.
There is some research showing a possible association between cell phone and microwave usage and cancer risk, but other studies have found no link. This doesn’t mean that it is harmless, as research often takes years to catch up to new technology. To be on the safe side, we recommend putting your phone on speaker during phone calls when possible, keeping it at least 10 feet away from you at night while you sleep, and keeping it in a purse or bag instead of in your pocket or bra. If you are concerned about the radiation emitted by microwaves, you can stand several feet from the microwave or in another room while it is being used.
One of the most common questions we get is about what kind of water to drink. This is a tricky question because there really is no perfect water. Tap water goes through intense filtration systems and is tested for contaminants often. However, the purification methods they use do not get out some potentially dangerous t certain heavy metals, chemicals like chlorine, bromine, and flouride.
Some heavy metals found in tap water include lead, mercury, and cadmium, among others. These metals are dangerous even in small amounts, and can be even more dangerous for children due to their smaller size, and because their detoxfication pathways are often not fully formed yet. Ingestion of toxic heavy metals may contribute to the development of dementia, heart disease, autism, depression, anxiety, autoimmune issues, and some types of cancers. Eating foods or taking supplements that contain chelating herbs like chlorella may help get some heavy metals out. HM Complex and Vital Detox both contain chlorella along with some other detoxifying ingredients.
Chlorine and bromine are chemicals often found in tap water, and they may be interfering with your thyroid. Chlorine and bromine are related to iodine, and when chlorine and bromine enter the body they can block the iodine receptors and interfere with the body’s ability to use iodine. An iodine deficiency can contribute to the development of thyroid issues and an increased risk for thyroid, breast, and prostate cancers. You can also be exposed to chlorine when showering and swimming in a pool. Getting a shower water filter and reducing time spent in swimming pools can help reduce your exposure to chlorine.
Fluoride is another chemical found in tap water, but it is intentionally added to the water supply in an effort to help prevent tooth decay. However, flouride has been linked to thyroid issues, decreases in cognitive function, and weakened bones. It can also cause fluorosis, a condition in which a person’s teeth are discolored with chalky white patches and/or brown spots. Fluorosis can occur when a person is exposed to too much flouride during the first eight years of their life. The supposed dental health benefits of flouride don’t come from ingestion, but rather from direct application to the teeth. There is a lot of controversy around the issue of water flouridation, and we encourage you to learn more about it.
Bottled water can be a good alternative to drinking tap water because it is usually filtered using reverse osmosis. Reverse osmosis removes almost everything in the water, including metals, chemicals, and even naturally occuring minerals. This is why companies add minerals back in to replace what was removed. While bottled water has its advantages, it is commonly sold in plastic bottles which can leech harmful chemicals into the water, in addition to being bad for the environment. The pH level of the water you drink is also important, and many of the common bottled water brands had a pH below seven when we tested them, which is considered acidic. If you decide to use bottled water, we suggest that you find a brand that uses reverse osmosis to filter their water and has an alkaline pH, which is anything over seven. This information is usually found on the label of each bottle. Opting for water bottled in glass bottles is a better option than those bottled in plastic.
What You Can Do
So, cell phones do emit radiation, but many experts believe that this radiation is virtually harmless. However, research often takes many years to catch up to the dangers of new technology, so play it safe and keep some distance between you and your phone whenever possible. Microwaves are also believed to be safe as they only produce a small electromagnetic field, which can be avoided by simply standing away from it. Tap water is generally not good to drink, and bottled water has its pros and cons. One of the best options for better quality water is to get a reverse osmosis water filter for your house. It may feel like everything is harmful to your health these days, but there are always good alternatives. We just want to give you information so that you can make more informed choices. The goal is to be a little better each day!
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