The human body consists of various chemicals that aid its functions. It needs chemicals to convert materials from one state to another for consumption. However, some chemicals hinder its operations and should be avoided. It is important to know the ones to consume and those to stay away from to protect your health. It is also important to know that some of these chemicals are contained in the substances that we handle every day.
- Nitrogen – Nitrogen is contained in amino acids and other essential nutrients that the human body needs to carry out its functions. It is an essential element because it is also used in the determination of DNA. Because of that, it is useful in growth, reproduction, and genetics. Most of the foods that we consume contain Nitrogen.
- Electrolytes – When mixed with water, electrolytes control electric currents in the body, and therefore, they control many functions. For example, they are responsible for the operation of the nerves, and they are the agents that carry signals from one body part to the brain and to the others. When you look at electrolyte vs nonelectrolyte chemicals, you will notice that there is a sharp difference in what they can do to the nerves and muscles. They also hydrate the body and control its acidity.
- Calcium – It occurs naturally, but can be combined with many other elements to form various products. The body needs calcium or many reasons, including the formation of hydroxyapatite, an essential requirement or the formation of bones. You will notice that children are enquired to take adequate amounts of calcium so that they can grow strong bones and teeth. In addition to that, it helps adults to regulate body functions.
- Parabens – we are living in the era of bacteria, and scientists have been coming up with lots of products to fight these pathogens. One of the chemicals used to fight them are parabens, a preservative used in foods and cosmetics. Although it keeps food fresh for long, it has an effect on the human body, and therefore, it is important to avoid it. For instance, it has been linked to the risk of contracting brain cancer.
- Phthalates – This group of chemicals is often used in plastics to increase their flexibility. It is commonly used in industries that use plastics, but it often finds its way into some of the foods and drinks that we consume. It is dangerous to consume Phthalates because they are endocrine disruptors and can cause several types of cancer.
- Sodium lauryl sulfate – It is found in most cleaning products, especially those that foam. Although it makes them effective, it is harmful to the body. It is important to be careful when using it because it starts by irritating the nose, ears, and eyes. However, that is just the initial sign because when you are exposed too much to it, you are likely to have kidney and respiratory diseases. It becomes more harmful when mixed with other chemicals to form nitrosamines.
The bottom line is that our environment is full of many chemicals, and they can either be good or bad for the body. The most important thing is for you to know the ones that are likely to help you and those that are harmful to your health. If you have to work with the harmful ones, you should take safety precautions such as wearing protective gear to ensure that you are safe throughout the process.
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Peter Wallace has been an advocate for mental health awareness for years. He holds a master’s degree in counselling from the University of Edinburgh.