Aluminum is one of the most abundant chemical elements in the world. It makes up eight percent of the earth’s surface.
It is found in the soil, water, air and in plenty of food sources. It is also the most widely used non-ferrous metal on earth, and it is present in industrial products like automobiles, air and sea crafts, packaging materials, water treatment, cookware, drugs, deodorants, and construction and paint products.
Exposure to aluminum happens when people eat foods, drink fluids or inhale air containing high levels of aluminum. Drinking water that contains not less than 50 micrograms of aluminum per liter is not considered safe.
Exposure to aluminum is quite common especially in people who are working in industries that use the element as the main component of their products. People living near near hazardous waste sites and some people who use aluminum wares for cooking or apply deodorants that contain aluminum are also prone to the health risks of aluminum exposure.
Aluminum is not inherently toxic, but the accumulation of high levels of this element in the body can cause serious health problems. Furthermore, high levels of aluminum would increase the health risk of people whose kidneys are not strong enough to resist aluminum toxicity.
Here are some of the health risks of aluminum exposure:
1. It increases the risk of anemia.
High levels of aluminum in the body can cause anemia. This could be triggered by decreased heme synthesis, decreased globulin synthesis and increased hemolysis. Aluminum is also believed to have a direct effect on the body’s ability to absorb iron through the intestines.
2. Prolonged exposure to high levels of aluminum is directly related to hepatic failure, renal failure and dementia.
3. High levels of aluminum can make people suffer from stomach pain, convulsions, gastroenteritis, liver dysfunction, and loss of balance. It can also make people experience muscle pains, fatigue, shortness of breath and loss of appetite.
4. It increases the possibility of behavioral distortion and speech problems in school children.
5. Constant exposure to aluminum increases a person’s risk to problems with the nervous system. Some of its manifestations include memory loss, headaches, heartburn, nervousness, confusion, insomnia, emotional instability and loss of coordination.
These are some of the health risks of aluminum exposure. If you experience any of these indications, you should not assume that it is caused by aluminum toxicity because these can also be manifested by other health problems.