Give Now  »

wfiu logo
WFIU Public Radio

wtiu logo
WTIU Public Television

Choose which station to support!

Indiana Public Media | WFIU - NPR | WTIU - PBS

Noon Edition

Bloody Body Burden

It may come as a surprise to you to learn that, like exhaust and raw sewage, researchers have found that our blood contains over 100 pollutants, including metals, combustion byproducts, pesticides, and herbicides.

It doesn't matter if you're a nonsmoker or work in a factory. Your blood is just as toxic.  Scientists tested thousands of people from across the United States, and the majority had toxic substances in their blood. In the past 50 years we've invented thousands of new chemicals. When we use things like cosmetics and eat food treated with pesticides and other chemicals, we absorb the chemicals used to make these things.

It's hard to know just how dangerous these toxic levels are to our health. Back in the 1970s, if we had assumed that the average level of lead in US residents' blood was safe, we would have been very wrong. It was only years later that we understood the scope of the problem.

Maybe ten years down the road we'll discover that the chemicals in our blood are really harmful. But for now, we can watch what we eat. The results of one study suggests that switching to organic produce may lower the level of some pesticides in your body.

Support For Indiana Public Media Comes From

About A Moment of Science