There is good news that chromium-6 the cancer-causing chemical in drinking water can be neutralized. By nature, chromium is a tasteless element and found mostly in rocks, soil, and volcanic dust.
There are two major forms of chromium in the environment- Trivalent chromium (chromium-3) and Hexavalent chromium (chromium-6). According to new research, there is a novel method to convert the dangerous chromium-6 into common chromium-3 for making it safer for human consumption.
Washington Expert’s Innovation
The credit for converting harmful chromium- 6 into chromium-3 goes to an engineer with Washington University.
“The health effects are quite well-known. It’s very potent as an inhaled contaminant, but in drinking water chromium-6 definitely has a negative impact on human health,” said Daniel Giammar, Professor of Environmental Engineering at the School of Engineering & Applied Science. His new method departs from conventional ways of converting chromium-6 to chromium-3 using iron.
The research was published in the journal Environmental Science & Technology. The paper explains how Giammar and his team used electricity under a process called electrocoagulation.
Giammar said electrocoagulation was the new approach used in introducing iron into the water. He explained how the conventional method was dispensed with by using two pieces of iron metal and applying a voltage between them for adding iron to converting the chromium-6 content.
Chromium-3 is indispensable to human health and obtained from fruits, vegetables, grains, meat, and multi-vitamins. chromium-6, coming mostly from industrial production harms both soil and groundwater.
According to federal norms, the current drinking water standard for total chromium is 0.1 mg/l. To ensure that the potential risk is addressed, EPA’s regulation assumes that a measurement of total chromium is 100 percent in which chromium-6 is the most toxic form.
Chromium-6 is added to the environment from erosion of natural chromium deposits and by industrial production.
Cadmium Resorption In Body
Another waterborne toxic substance is Cadmium that makes its way to human beings through pulmonary, gastrointestinal, and dermal means.
According to experts, one metabolic parameter for increased cadmium intake is a lack of iron in an individual. People with low iron supplies show a 6 percent higher uptake of Cadmium than those with a balanced iron level.
According to studies, the intestinal tract bears the brunt of Cadmium toxicity as it is the first internal organ to be exposed.
Study shows that Cadmium damages intestines by disrupting tight junctions which are areas where cells are closely bound as a barrier to resist permeability to fluid. Once the gut barrier is damaged permeability increases and that leads to inflammation and excessive porosity.
Cancer Threat From Wine
Meanwhile, there is bad news for white wine drinkers as they are more exposed to skin cancer.
A study, published in the medical journal, Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention, found that those who drank one glass of white wine daily increased their risk of melanoma by 13 percent.
This is because white wine carries acetaldehyde, a carcinogenic compound. At the same time, the colored counterpart, red wine is rich in antioxidants and can mitigate cancer-causing chemicals.
However, Dr. Hooman Khorasani of Mount Sinai Health System said the projected risk is unlikely to deter people from giving up their favorite wine.