Residents of the areas where mining and mineral raw material processing works (coal mining, in particular) are located, and also those near thermal power engineering and metallurgy works receive large doses of radiation. The concentration of radon in the air of residential constructions and public buildings in these areas can ten times exceed valid hygienic norms. The important source of natural radionuclides is processing and use of phosphatic fertilizers, as sedimental phosphatic ores are characterized by high concentration of Uranium-238. In phosphate fertilizers uranium, thorium, radium, plumbum and polonium can be found. The concentration of radionuclides in these fertilizers is higher than in the earth. However, according to the UNO reports, the percentage of living organisms affected by radiation as the consequence of the use of phosphatic fertilizers is as small as 0.01% of the total natural radiation background. Besides, natural radionuclides get into the environment as a result of coal burning while heating private houses, as well as while using coal ash in cement and concrete production as a filling compound for road covering. While heating private houses, only 10 % of overall global coal production is burnt; though, because of the small height of pipes and absence of ash detention system, a part of this source in the total radionuclide emission into the environment is similar to the part of emission of all thermal power stations taken together.
In the ’40s-’60s, clocks, souvenirs, children’s toys and christmas-tree decorations were covered with phosphor paint of constant activity, which included radium salts. The radioactive background around these things exceeds the maximum permissible one by one hundred times; therefore it is necessary to get rid of old souvenirs and family relics shining in the dark in the apartments.
What should be remembered in order to lower the quantity of radioactive elements in our body? First of all, it is necessary to keep proper metabolism that can be reached by right diet.
It is necessary to include the so-called enterosorbates (substances which bind or absorb radionuclides) in the diet. Beans, vegetables, siftings, as well as pectin, contained in fruit and vegetables, are rich in them. The largest amount of pectin is found in cranberries, citrus plants, ashberries, currants, cherries, plums, apples, bananas, cabbage and seeds. Tea, coffee and cocoa are also rich in enterosorbates. Seaweed with high contents of sodium alginate that blocks strontium from getting into the body is strongly recommended.
In order to prevent radionuclide penetration into the organism it is necessary to eat enough safe elements which are chemical analogues or substitutes of radionuclides. Instead of one radioactive element, our body is capable of absorbing another safe element of the same chemical group. For example, Caesium-137 belongs to the same group as harmless potassium, sodium and lithium, and Strontium-90 to the calcium and magnesium group. Plumbum-210 can be absorbed strenuously by cells due to the lack of silicium, and Polonium-210 due to the lack of sulfur. So by nourishing your organism with harmless elements with similar chemical properties to radioactive ones you prevent the penetration of your body with the latter.
Thyroid gland produces hormones containing iodine. The cells of this gland are characterized by the ability to selectively accumulate iodine. Following the lack of iodine, required for the synthesis of hormones, the thyroid gland enlarges. Following the continuous lack of iodine, violation of mental development occurs, the body mass enlarges and blood pressure decreases. However, the body can independently consume radioactive isotopes of iodine instead of stable iodine, which has a negative impact on the health. Therefore it is necessary to take iodine as a diet supplement what will provide protection for the thyroid gland. Iodine is contained in all dark-color berries, beets, tomatoes, leek, mushrooms, green peas and sea products. It is enough to eat 10-30 fresh or frozen berries, or 2-3 leeks every day to provide the necessary quantity of iodine.
When getting into the human body, Caesium-137 and potassium are accumulated in muscles, kidneys and liver. Potassium is necessary for normal functioning of all muscles, especially heart muscles. The basic alimentary sources of potassium are vegetables, such as: carrots, celery, parsley and spinach. Mixture of juices made of these vegetables can restore the cells and tissues affected by radiation sickness. Besides, there is also a so-called potassium cardiac mixture, which consists of dried apricots, prunes and raisins. Half-a-glass of water tincture of this mixture satisfies a daily need for potassium. Potassium is also contained in rye bread, oatmeal and beans.
Calcium is a chemical analogue of Strontium-90. It makes up 25% of bone tissue. The lack of calcium causes ramollissement of bone tissues (rachitis), rheumatic joint pains, cramps and hyper excitability. At the same time, calcium blocks absorption of Strontium-90 by bone tissue, hence preventing radiation injury of the bone marrow. Calcium in large quantities is contained in cabbage, beans and almonds. Though, it is necessary to keep in mind that calcium contained in food is hardly assimilated by a human organism, except for the one contained in goat milk and cheese. 100 grams of cheese satisfies the daily need for calcium. The acidic medium is a good assistance for calcium assimilation, so it is useful to have orange or other sour juices after meals.
Here are some useful hints:
- The higher the apartment is located in the building, the less radon dose that is emitted from the soil it receives.
- Water should be boiled, as radon dissolves while boiling.
- Use cooker hood as it reduces the quantity of radon in the air.
- Most of radon is received in the house when using coal for the furnace.
- Maintain the right diet.
- Remember that alcohol is no precaution against irradiation.
- While smoking you inhale strontium and polonium.