Pesticides in chlorinated tap water found to cause increased food allergies

Sunday, April 21, 2013 by: J. D. Heyes
Tags: pesticides, tap water, allergies

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(NaturalNews) The evidence continues to mount against genetically modified organisms, in terms of why they are harming our food supply and how much damage they are causing to humans in general.

The latest data indicates there is a substantial and growing health risk between GMO pesticides and chlorinated tap water, resulting in higher numbers of food allergies with many resulting in additional gastrointestinal problems.

Food allergies affect some 15 million people and are rising, researchers in a new study say, while noting that dichlorophenol-containing pesticides could be partially to blame.

The study, published in the December issue of the journal Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, which is the scientific publication of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, or ACAAI, found that elevated levels of dichlorophenols, a chemical included in pesticides and to chlorinate water, when found in humans, is often associated with food allergies.

'Can possibly weaken food tolerance'

"We wanted to see if there was an association between certain pesticides and food allergies, and we were specifically interested in dichlorophenols because those were the ones that had this antibacterial effect," said allergist Elina Jerschow, M.D., an ACAAI fellow and lead study author.

"Our research shows that high levels of dichlorophenol-containing pesticides can possibly weaken food tolerance in some people, causing food allergy," she said. "This chemical is commonly found in pesticides used by farmers and consumer insect and weed control products, as well as tap water."

In large amounts, these chemicals are known to be fatal. They could also cause immediate renal failure, or cause damage to the liver and other organs.

Researchers followed 10,348 participants in a U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey from 2005-2006. Of them, 2,548 had dichlorophenol levels measured in urine; 2,211 were included into the study. Food allergies were found in 411 of them, while 1,016 had an environmental allergy.

"Previous studies have shown that both food allergies and environmental pollution are increasing in the United States," said Jerschow. "The results of our study suggest these two trends might be linked, and that increased use of pesticides and other chemicals is associated with a higher prevalence of food allergies."

Researchers say that the obvious solution might be to just switch to bottled water in order to reduce your risk of developing an allergy. But the study said that may not work.

"Other dichlorophenol sources, such as pesticide-treated fruits and vegetables, may play a greater role in causing food allergy," Jerschow said.

Chemicals are known to be lethal

According to, an investigative site:

Like chlorine, dichlorophenols are known to kill bacteria, it is a chemical used in pesticides and weed killers, and is also the same chemical that is used in chlorinating drinking water. That may sound like a good thing at first to most, but this also means that it could be killing the naturally occurring bacteria in our digestive systems which could cause food allergies.

Officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, located in Atlanta, Ga., say an increase in food allergy of about 18 percent was seen between 1997 and 2007. The most common of those were allergies to eggs, peanuts, wheat, milk, soy, fish and shellfish, the CDC said.

Scientists say food allergy symptoms range from a mild rash to an emergent, life-threatening condition known as an anaphylactic (allergic) reaction, where the airway can swell shut. The ACAAI says everyone with a known food allergy to carry a couple of doses of the medication epinephrine, which is used to combat the symptoms caused by severe allergic reactions.


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