Tuesday, October 23, 2007

What is Dioxin?

My mum threw me this question early in the morning. I know it's something harmful to human but nothing much about it. Oh yes, my mum ordered and received her cloth menstrual pad and told me she found out a note that talk about dioxin together with her parcel. I guess it's the same note we all received from Sandra.

I goggled search in wikipedia, and anyone studied Chemistry? I did but forgot all by now. OK, this is taken from wikipedia:

Dioxin is the common name for the group of compounds classified as polychlorinated dibenzodioxins (PCDDs). ( I also don't know what's that)- are members of the family of halogenated organic compounds, have been shown to bioaccumulate (accumulate over years) in humans and wildlife due to their lipophilic (fat-liking, refers to the ability of a chemical compunds to dissolve in fats, oils, lipids) properties, and are known teratogens, mutagens, and suspected human carcinogens.

Some interesting facts about dioxin:
- Dioxin enters the general population almost exclusively from ingestion of food, specifically through the consumption of fish, meat, and dairy products since dioxins are fat-soluble and readily climb the food chain. Thus create body burden.

- Children are passed substantial body burdens by their mothers, and breastfeeding increases the child's body burden[citation needed]. Children's body burdens are often many times above the amount implied by tolerable intakes which are based on body weight. Breast fed children usually have substantially higher dioxin body burdens than non breast fed children until they are about 8 to 10 years old. The WHO still recommends breast feeding for its other benefits.

- Dioxins are produced in small concentrations when organic material is burned in the presence of chlorine

- Dioxins are also generated in reactions that do not involve burning — such as bleaching fibers for paper or textiles, and in the manufacture of chlorinated phenols, particularly when reaction temperature is not well controlled.

Think about the disposable menstrual pad and diaper we use, which one doesn't go through bleaching??? And we are/were using it since ... the first day we got our period 15 or 20 years ago??!!

- Dioxins are present in minuscule amounts in a wide range of materials used by humans — including practically all substances manufactured using plastics, resins, or bleaches.[citation needed] Such materials include tampons, and a wide variety of food packaging substances.

However, it is disputed whether such exceptionally tiny exposures have any clinical relevance[citation needed]. It is even controversially discussed whether dioxins might have a non-linear dose-response curve with beneficial health effects in a certain lower dose range, a phenomenon called hormesis[citation needed].
Dietary sources of dioxin in the United States have been analyzed by the EPA (United States Environmental Protection Agency) and scientists from other organizations.

Effects on Human?

Exposure to high levels of dioxin in humans causes a severe form of persistent acne, known as chlorance. Other effects in humans may include:
-Developmental abnormalities in the enamel of children's teeth
-Central and Peripheral Nervous System pathology
-Thyroid disorders
-Damage to the Immune systems
Recent studies have shown that exposure to dioxin changes the ratio of male to female births among a population such that more females are born than males.

My conclusion - there is no firm evidence showing that Dioxin is extremely harmful to human in small quantity. But bear in mind that it will accumulate in human body from 7 -132 years! If you can avoid it, try to avoid. Read up more on the update from time to time as I think scientists & researchers also will take up a long time to do research on getting good evidene on effects of Dioxin on human body and the ecological system in our planet.

No comments:

Blog Interviewer

All pictures in this blog is copyrighted.
Do not use without my permission.