Vive Le Canada

Lab Tests Find 60 Toxic Chemicals in Canadians' Blood
Date: Wednesday, November 16 2005

Lab Tests Find 60 Toxic Chemicals in Canadians' Blood

OTTAWA, Ontario, Canada, November 15, 2005 (ENS) - Only 11 Canadians had their blood tested for toxic chemicals in a new study by an environmental nonprofit organization, but they came from across the country and every person's blood tested positive for a wide range of chemicals. Stain repellants, flame retardants, mercury and lead, DDT, and PCBs are among the 60 contaminants detected by blood tests.

The report, released Thursday by Environmental Defence, is the first in Canada to test for a broad range of chemicals in average Canadians from across the country. The testing demonstrates that toxic chemicals contaminate Canadians no matter where they live in the country, how old they are or what they do for a living, concludes the report, "Toxic Nation: A Report on Pollution in Canadians."

“If you can walk, talk and breathe, you’re contaminated,” said Dr. Rick Smith, executive director of Environmental Defence. “Canadians are exposed everyday and in incredibly insidious ways to harmful toxic chemicals. We are guinea pigs in a massive, uncontrolled, chemical experiment, the disastrous outcome of which is measured in disease and death.”

Many of the chemicals discovered in the bodies of Canadians are associated with cancer, hormone disruption, reproductive disorders, respiratory illnesses and harming the development of children, Smith said.

Nycole Turmel lives in Gatineau, in southern Quebec. Fifty-one of the 88 chemicals tested were detected in Turmel's blood, including 34 carcinogens.

Two volunteers were tested in British Columbia, one in Alberta, one in Manitoba, three in Ontario, three in Quebec and one in Newfoundland and Labrador. Most eat organic foods, and some are vegetarian. Only two smoke tobacco.

On average, 44 chemicals were found in each volunteer.

[Proofreader's note: this article was edited for spelling and typos on November 17, 2005]


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