CRUMB RUBBER- Artificial turf was created in 1964 by Monsanto. At first it was simply a thin layer of “grass” over concrete. Later, better or softer forms were created. “Crumb rubber”, or old tires that had been pulverized, were poured in between fake grass blades. This gave the field more bounce, and gave athletes softer landings.
From an economic standpoint, artificial turf is a great help to cities trying to keep costs down. Artificial turf costs less than natural grass to maintain, doesn’t need to be watered, needs no pesticides or fertilizers, and can take lots and lots of abuse. All this adds up to major savings. Additionally, using crumb rubber seems environmental, since you are recycling the rubber instead of putting it in landfills.
The use of artificial turf has been so economical that crumb rubber is now even being used in children’s playgrounds all over the country.
THE PROBLEM- Some of the components of rubber have been shown to cause cancer. So imagine what happens when the field heats up and rubber vapors start rising. The vapors are inhaled, and absorbed by the skin.
Additionally, the tiny crumbs of rubber get everywhere as the field is played on. As this happens, it gets in the players’ eyes, mouth, lungs, clothes, hair, and even into cuts and scrapes.
Soccer goalies seem to be especially affected by the rubber crumbs, as they dive hundreds of times in practice and games, rolling all around in the crumbs.
One concerned parent was able to make a list of 38 American soccer players who have been diagnosed with cancer. Out of those 38, 34 have been goal keepers.
ON THE OTHER HAND- Of course the makers and users of artificial turf are claiming the surface to be completely safe, and have no desire to do further studies.
Personally, I’d rather be safe than sorry, and I think it is worth further investigation.
Thanks to Stu B of NC for this one…
For the full article, go here: http://www.nbcnews.com/news/investigations/how-safe-artificial-turf-your-child-plays-n220166
Hope this helps,
Dr Matt and Dr Robin
This week’s bit of Useless Information: Halloween was brought to North America by immigrants from Europe who would celebrate the harvest around a bonfire, share ghost stories, sing, dance and tell fortunes.
This email is courtesy of Matthew Barnes, D.C. and Robin Barnes, D.C. Neither this nor any of our emails are intended to be medical advice and should not be taken as such. They are opinion and are for informational purposes only. None of the nutrients discussed here are meant to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease.