In the words of environmental exponent and former Vice President Al Gore: The following information is “an inconvenient truth.”
Research into the link between chlorinated swimming pool water and the components of human and/or animal urine is highly significant for one’s health and toxicity. A strong chemical connection exists. The combination frequently forms a new chemical compound which is poisonous to the human body.
Chlorine in the swimming pool’s water reacts with ammonia in the urine to produce three types of chloramines: NH2Cl, NHCl2 and NCl3. Chloramines, usually containing the chemicals nitrogen, hydrogen and chlorine, often are added by regional water utilities in very dilute solutions as disinfectants. Aquarium owners, however, must remove the chloramine from tap water to fill fish tanks because it is toxic to fish. Aging the aquarium water for a few days removes chlorine but not the more stable chloramine, which can be neutralized using products available at pet stores.
In swimming pools, chloramines are formed by the reaction of free chlorine with pathological organic substances (such as urine, bacteria, etc.) The lower the concentration of chloramines the better, because chloramines, compared to free chlorine, are both less effective as a sanitizer and more irritating to the eyes of swimmers. When swimmers complain of eye irritation from “too much chlorine” in a pool, the problem is typically a high level of chloramines, caused by too little chlorine in relation to the amount of organic matter. Pool test kits designed for use by homeowners are sensitive to both free chlorine and chloramines, which can be misleading. There may actually be too little chlorine and too much chloramine.
NH2Cl in swimming pool water can be toxic in large quantities. The USA’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations limit chloramine concentration to just 4 parts per million. When the concentration grows higher from too much urine combining with the swimming pool’s usual added chlorine, poisoning results.
Additional toxic reactions result when NH2Cl, a key intermediate in the traditional synthesis of hydrazine, increases inordinately. Conceptually, hydrazine is produced from coupling a pair of ammonia molecules by removal of one H (hydrogen) per molecule. In industry, hydrazine is produced in the Olin Raschig process (well established in the chemical industry) from sodium hypochlorite and ammonia, a process developed in 1907. This industrial method relies on the reaction of chloramine with ammonia. The Olin Rachig process to form hydrazine tends to occur spontaneously within the human body as an extracurricular reaction between swimmers’ urinations and swimming pool chlorination.
Hydrazine is highly toxic and dangerously unstable. It kills human tissue cells, especially in the anhydrous form (containing no water) and has been applied by Syracuse, New York holistic oncologist Joe Gold, M.D. at the Cancer Research Institue, as a naturally occurring anti-cancer agent. Symptoms of acute (short-term) exposure to high levels of hydrazine may include irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat, dizziness, headache, nausea, pulmonary edema, seizures, and coma in humans (all manifestations of tissue damage). To much exposure to the combination of urine and chlorine also can cause death.
When swimming in a pool containing chlorinated water, it is mandatory to protect yourself by donning a mask and snorkel so as to avoid eye and oral exposure to the poolwater contaminants. Anyone not using such preventive equipment is endangering health and life. Rules that stop the use of such life-sustaining equipment not only are foolish but also deserve penalties of legal enforcement.
Something else: Acute exposure to hydrazine in swimming pool water can also damage the liver, kidneys, and central nervous system in humans (organ damage).
Liquid hydrazine is corrosive and may produce dermatitis from skin contact in humans and animals. Effects to the lungs, liver, spleen, and thyroid have been reported in animals chronically (long-term) exposed to hydrazine via inhalation. Increased incidences of lung, nasal cavity, and liver tumors have been observed in rodents exposed to hydrazine.
Thus, daily exposure to swimming pools probably is quite harmful, especially for people with a medical condition involving their urinary tract as occurs in cystitis, bladder infection, incontinence, and more. Poisonous chemicals accumulate anywhere that urine and chlorine come into contact. Anytime someone enters a chlorinated swimming pool possible poisoning results to exposed organs from water entering through facial orifices such as the nose and mouth. It comes from the toxicity combination of chloramine and hydrazine.
There is a solution or two or more for this problem besides not urinating in the water. Wear a snorkel and mask while swimming in the swimming pool to keep chlorine combined with urine in the water out of one’s facial orifices. Disinfect and purify swimming pool water with a substitute for chlorination using ozone. Ozonation is far superior to chlorination and actually benefits human cells. It kills pathogens of all types including viruses—a primary treatment for HIV infection—and every form of pathologic bacteria, fungi, and parasitic agent.
–From Medical Journalist & Valencia Isles resident Dr. Morton Walker
Permission is granted to repost this article in its entirety with credit to Dr Morton Walker and a clickable link back to this page. Dr Morton Walker, DPM, CCN is the author of 92 books, 14 of which are bestsellers about holistic medicine, orthomolecular nutrition and alternative methods of healing. He is the recipient of 23 medical journalism awards.