The Effects of Chlorine in Your Water: Chlorine, Cancer and
We are quite convinced, based on this study, that there is an association between cancer and chlorinated water.” —
Medical College of Wisconsin research team
I’m like the canary in the coal mine. I can smell chemicals in water and in the air that other people don’t
even notice. I can smell when food is “just about to go bad.”
My senses have always been offended by the smell of chlorine, as if instinctively rebelling from something
negative. The more I read about the effects of chlorine on the system (for example, did you know that chlorine
byproducts trigger free radicals that are highly carcinogenic?), the more I believe my body’s rejection of
it, instantly on smelling it, is justified.
This article details important holistic health information about the water you may be drinking, cooking and
bathing in and how you can make it better. There are some big words in this article, like Trihalomethanes,
but the bottom line of it is that chlorine just isn’t healthy for us to be taking into our bodies or allowing
to penetrate our skin and lungs in the shower.
This article courtesy of Aquasana Water Enhancement Products-
It will change the way you live.
Water treatment facilities have added chlorine to drinking water since the late 1800’s. I was amazed to find
this out, thinking it was an addition of the technological age—maybe 50 years tops). By 1904, adding
chlorine was the standard in water treatment. For the most part, that hasn’t changed even today, a hundred
We don’t use chlorine because it’s the safest or even the most effective means of disinfection, we use it
because it is the cheapest. In spite of all our technological advances, we essentially still pour bleach
in our water before we drink it. The long term effects of chlorinated drinking water have just recently being
recognized. According to the U.S. Council of Environmental Quality, “Cancer risk among people drinking
chlorinated water is 93% higher than among those whose water does not contain chlorine.”
Dr. Joseph Price wrote a highly controversial book in the late sixties titled “Coronaries/Cholesterol/Chlorine” and
concluded that nothing can negate the incontrovertible fact, the basic cause of atherosclerosis and resulting
entities such as heart attacks and stroke, is chlorine. Dr. Price later headed up a study using chickens
as test subjects, where two groups of several hundred birds were observed throughout their span to maturity.
One group was given water with chlorine and the other without. The group raised with chlorine, when autopsied,
showed some level of heart or circulatory disease in every specimen, the group without had no incidence of
disease. The group with chlorine under winter conditions, showed outward signs of poor circulation, shivering,
drooped feathers and a reduced level of activity.
The group without chlorine grew faster, larger and displayed vigorous health. This study was well received
in the poultry industry and is still used as a reference today. As a result, most large poultry producers
use dechlorinated water. It would be a common sense conclusion that if regular chlorinated tap water is not
good enough for the chickens, then it probably is not good enough for us humans!
What the heck are Trihalomethanes? There is a lot of well founded concern about chlorine. When chlorine is
added to our water, it combines with other natural compounds to form Trihalomethanes (chlorination byproducts),
These chlorine byproducts trigger the production of free radicals in the body, causing cell damage, and are
highly carcinogenic. “Although concentrations of these carcinogens (THMs) are low, it is precisely these
low levels that cancer scientists believe are responsible for the majority of human cancers in the United
States.” The Environmental Defense Fund
Simply stated chlorine is a pesticide, as defined by the U.S. EPA, who’s sole purpose is to kill living organisms.
When we consume water containing chlorine, it kills some part of us, destroying cells and tissue inside our
Dr. Robert Carlson, a highly respected University of Minnesota researcher who’s work is sponsored by the Federal
Environmental Protection Agency, sums it up by claiming , “the chlorine problem is similar to that of
air pollution”, and adds that “chlorine is the greatest crippler and killer of modern times!”
Breast cancer, which now effects one in every eight women in North America, has recently been linked to the
accumulation of chlorine compounds in the breast tissue. A study carried out in Hartford Connecticut, the
first of it’s kind in North America, found that, “women with breast cancer have 50% to 60% higher levels
of organochlorines (chlorination byproducts) in their breast tissue than women without breast cancer.”
One of the most shocking components to all of these studies is that up to 2/3s of our harmful exposure to
chlorine is due to inhalation of steam and skin absorption while showering. A warm shower opens up the pores
of the skin and allows for accelerated absorption of chlorine and other chemicals in water.
The steam we inhale while showering can contain up to 50 times the level of chemicals than tap water due to
the fact that chlorine and most other contaminants vaporize much faster and at a lower temperature than water.
Inhalation is a much more harmful means of exposure since the chlorine gas (chloroform) we inhale goes directly
into our blood stream. When we drink contaminated water the toxins are partially filtered out by our kidneys
and digestive system.
Chlorine vapors are known to be a strong irritant to the sensitive tissue and bronchial passages inside our
lungs, it was used as a chemical weapon in World War II. The inhalation of chlorine is a suspected cause
of asthma and bronchitis, especially in children. which has increased 300% in the last two decades. “Showering
is suspected as the primary cause of elevated levels of chloroform in nearly every home because of chlorine
in the water.” Dr Lance Wallace, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Chlorine in shower water also has a very negative cosmetic effect, robbing our skin and hair of moisture and
elasticity, resulting in a less vibrant and youthful appearance. Anyone who has ever swam in a chlorinated
pool can relate to the harsh effects that chlorine has on the skin and hair. What’s surprising is that we
commonly find higher levels of chlorine in our tap water than is recommended safe for swimming pools.
Aside from all the health risks related to chlorine in our water, it is the primary cause of bad taste and
odor in drinking water. The objectionable taste causes many people to turn to other less healthful beverages
like soft drinks, tea or other sweetened drinks. A decreased intake of water, for any reason, can only result
in a lower degree of health.
The good news is that chlorine is one of the easiest substances to remove from our water. For that reason
it logically should serve it’s purpose of keeping our water free from harmful bacteria and water borne diseases
right up to the time of consumption, where it should then be removed by quality home water filtration.
No one will argue that chlorine serves an important purpose, and that the hazards of doing away with chlorine
are greater than or equal to the related health risks. The simple truth is that chlorine is likely here to
The idea that we could do away with chlorine any time in the near future is just not realistic. It is also
clear that chlorine represents a very real and serious threat to our health and should be removed in our
homes, at the point of use, both from the water we drink and the water we shower in.
Benefits of Shower Water Filtration
With the realization that more chemicals enter our body through skin absorption and inhalation of steam while
showering than does from drinking water, the benefits of shower filtration have become very obvious. Aquasana AQ-410 Filtration System is one of the most unique and beneficial products ever developed.
A recent report in the American Journal of Public Health linked chlorine to significant increases in certain
types of cancer and stated that “up to 2/3s of the harmful exposure was due to skin absorption and inhalation
A warm shower opens the pores of the skin and allows a high rate of absorption of chlorine and other chemicals.
The steam we inhale while showering can contain up to 20 times the level of chlorine and other synthetic
chemicals than tap water due to the fact that these chemicals vaporizes at a lower temperature and at a much
faster rate than water.
Inhalation of chlorine and chemical vapors is known to be a strong irritant to the tissues in our lungs and
a suspected cause of asthma and bronchitis. When chemicals are inhaled into our lungs they enter directly
into our bloodstream and can have magnified effects versus ingested chemicals which are partially filtered
by our liver and kidneys.
Other than the obvious holistic health benefits of showering in chemical free water, the cosmetic benefits
are even more noticeable. Anyone who has ever gone swimming in a chlorinated pool can relate to the harsh
drying effect that chlorine has on your skin and hair. Without the effects of chlorine and other chemicals
found in tap water, your skin and hair retain moisture more effectively for a younger healthier look and
The Aquasana shower filter is a patented, uniquely designed two stage system that removes chlorine and other
chemicals for a healthier and more enjoyable shower experience. This high capacity filter is easy to install
and is an attractive and beneficial addition to any shower.
It’s like showering in natural spring water. Once you experience it you’ll never go back.
Also from Aquasana—Deluxe Drinking Water Filtration System: Restores water to a refreshingly healthy
state for only 9 cents a gallon.
More information on this can be found in our free online health magazine.