Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : February 25th 2014 Contents B36
body & soul
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Tuesday, February 25, 2014
MINISTRY OF FINANCE
Inland Revenue Division
"Changing the way we interact with you"
Taxpayer Relations Section
Visit us at www.ird.gov.tt
Next time you buy a bath towel, T-shirt or even
notepad, you might want to think twice before pick-
ing the colour.
A new study by Rutgers University found that yellow
dyes found in many common household products
and items could contain a potentially harmful chemical
that may be bad for your health.
That chemical is PCB 11, which is regularly found
in yellow dyes in printing inks, paper, paint and cloth-
ing, said Lisa Rodenburg, one of the study s authors
and associate professor in environmental chemistry
While researchers said they need to conduct further
study on the toxicity of PCB 11 specifically, previous
studies have linked PCBs in general with irritations,
cancer, birth defects and developmental problems in
children and even very bad acne.
"PCBs cause a whole range of really worrisome
health problems," Rodenburg said in an interview yes-
terday with Good Morning America. "There is enough
evidence that there could be health effects from this
specific kind of PCB that we should investigate fur-
But there s no easy solution. Even if consumers
make an effort to avoid yellow-coloured products,
they re still inadvertently exposed to the toxins, which
are leaching into the air and water, and even-
tually into human bodies, Rodenburg said.
"That s the scariest thing about this," said
concerned mother Michelle Noehres. "We re
talking about the colour yellow, which is in
so many things. You can t really shop your
way out of that."
"We know that everyone is going to be
exposed to these things sooner than later.
You can t really avoid contact with every
printed material in the world," Rodenburg
"The PCBs get out of that printed material
and they get into the air, so whether you like
it or not everyone is breathing this stuff in."
Congress passed the Toxic Substances
Control Act in 1979 banning PCBs after the
chemical began showing up in fish and
wildlife, Rodenburg said. But lawmakers
realised quickly there was no way to regulate
the inadvertent production of the chemical
and so created a legal loophole to permit its
"Technically speaking these PCBs are
banned," Rodenburg said. "These chemical
pigments are covered under TOSCA. It is
just they are allowed at very low levels."
Rodenburg said she did not want to alarm
the public, and the chemical is not found in
every yellow item.
The researchers tested common consumer
goods and found PCB 11 in all 16 pieces of
the yellow-printed clothing they tested, as
well as all 28 paper samples containing ink,
including maps, glossy magazine advertise-
ments, postcards, and coloured newsprint.
The study also found the chemical in 15 out
of 18 paper goods manufactured in the US.
According to other research, published in
Environmental Health Perspectives, it is found
in everything ranging from food packaging
to plastic bags. (Good Morning America)
New concerns raised about yellow dyes
YOUR DAILY HEALTH
News and Advice
New research published in the journal Respirology
finds that those suffering from chronic obstructive
pulmonary disease (COPD) can reduce their risk of
hospitalisation following severe attacks by walking
a mere three to six kilometres each day and main-
taining that regimen.
COPD is a medical term concerning emphysema
and chronic bronchitis, though some people may be
afflicted with both diseases. The term refers to breathing
difficulty due to long-term lung damage from smoking
or other health
issues such as
exposure to dust,
chemicals, or air pollu-
tion. A family history of
COPD is another risk factor.
Symptoms include coughing,
wheezing, shortness of breath,
laboured breathing and chest
tightness. Severe symptoms,
or eCOPD, include acute,
problems from reduced
Five Spanish respira-
tory clinics studied 543
COPD patients and
cise levels after
far the patients
compared to hospitalisation information from Bilbao s
Hospital Galdakao-Usansolo. Researchers found those
who maintained a moderate to intense fitness reg-
imen---which could include low-intensity activities
such as walking for three to six kilometres each day---
had much lower risk of hospitalisation from serious
breathing issues. Those who did not exercise regularly
or not often enough were at much greater risk of hos-
pitalisation. (The Week)
Daily short walks
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