CELLPHONES – SAFE OR DANGEROUS By Cord Prettyman, MPT
And, the debate goes on. Are cellphones the safest product to hit the market since seatbelts – as the Cellular Industry contents – or are millions of Americans going to have brain tumors in the next ten to twenty years.
The contentious issue was thrust back into the spotlight, when a California Superior Court judge ruled that the state of California must release documents addressing the possible health risks of long-term cellphone use. According to a CBS report, the documents were written by the state’s Environmental Health Investigations branch and are believed to contain cellphone radiation warnings and recommendations for public use of the devices.
Joel Moskowitz, Ph.D., Director of the Center for Family and Community Health at UC Berkeley’s School of Public Health requested the documents and the state refused. Dr. Moskowitz sued the state saying, “I would like this document to see the light of day because it will inform the public that there is concern within the California Department of Public Health that cellphone radiation is a risk and it will provide them with some information about how to reduce those risks.”
When asked why he thinks the state is trying to suppress this document, he said, “They claim that this would lead to chaos and confusion among the public.”
The issue of concern among scientists is the electromagnetic radiation or radiofrequency that is emitted from the antenna of cell phones. It is known that exposure to high levels of RF radiation can be harmful due to its ability to heat biological tissue rapidly, which is how microwave ovens cook food.
The RF waves –a form of energy located on the electromagnetic spectrum between FM radio waves and microwaves – are emitted from the antenna, which is part of the body of a hand-held cell phone. The waves are strongest at the antenna and lose energy as they travel away from the phone.
The long-term health consequences of cellphone radiation are unknown. However, a report issued in January of 2010 by the International Electromagnetic Field Collaborative endorsed by 43 scientists from 13 countries linked cell phone use to brain tumors refuting cellular industry-funded research that gave cell phones a clean bill of health.
“I fear we will see a tsunami of brain tumors, although it is too early to see that now since the tumors have a 30-year latency,” study author Lloyd Morgan said. “I pray I’m wrong but brace yourself.”
In other research, a team of 21 scientists from 14 countries – including the United States – reviewed a multitude of studies on cell phone safety and found enough evidence to categorize personal exposure to cell phones as a “possible carcinogen” to humans – lumping it in a category with lead, engine exhaust and DDT.
In the meantime, as we wait for a final verdict on the safety of cell phones, 300 million Americans and 5 billion people worldwide get to be the guinea pigs as to whether our obsessive need to be constantly connected is akin to sticking one’s head in a microwave oven on high for 10 minutes.
Cord Prettyman is a certified Master Personal Trainer and owner of Absolute Workout Fitness and Post-Re-hab Studio in Woodland Park. He can be reached at 687-7437, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org through his website at www.cordprettyman.com.