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Each and everyday, earth is attacked by radioactivity but luckily for us, most of that radiation is blocked by our atmosphere and by our magnetic field. Earth’s soil contains particles of uranium and thorium, which are both radioactive which then ends up in our food as a result. As humans began to harness the power of radioactivity and these elements, strange experiments and weapons facilities turned into some of the largest sources of radioactivity, much greater than what would happen naturally on earth. From everyday items that emit ionizing radiation, to a dry lake that emits enough to be lethal if you sat there for an hour, here are the most radioactive things in the world.
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Starting off with the least radioactive thing on this list, bananas are something you wouldn’t expect to be on this list. Many of us who need a good fix of potassium will grab a banana! However you might not know that potassium you find in this fruit is actually radioactive! You might think to yourself, how could something like this emit, ionizing radiation!? Similar to some forms of granite that you might have on your countertops, they contain potassium 40 which is a radioactive isotope. In fact, it’s almost become a form of measurement when explaining how radioactive something. Getting one X ray at the dentist’s office is about equivalent to eating 70000. the radioactive leakage at Fukushima is equivalent to 70 million bananas, according to BBC. Long story short, bananas are radioactive but that certainly doesn’t mean you should stop eating them. You probably die of diabetes before eating the amount of bananas needed to feel radiation poisoning.
11. Brazil Nuts
Brazil nuts might be hiding a little secret that you didn’t know about. In case you were wondering what food emits the most ionizing radiation, that would be the Brazil Nut! This is due to fact that the roots of the tree can reach far into the soil and soak up chemicals such as radium and then eventually into the nut. It’s also been known to contain things such as selenium, and barium but the element of radium was present 1000 times more in Brazil nuts than any other food. If you’re thinking about making a nuclear weapon out of Brazil nuts, you’re still going to run into some issues. The EPA has food standards on radiation so you should be fine to eat them without turning into the hulk.
10. Cat Litter
None of us enjoy taking out the cat litter but did you know you were actually cleaning up radioactive waste! Some cat litter you come across at the store does contain what’s known as bentonite clay which contains small traceable particles of Uranium 238, Thorium and Potassium 40. Kitty litter is one of the more common radioactive substances found in people’s homes and it just so happens to be a great product for soaking up cat waste. Although it’s just small trace amounts of this stuff, you have begin to wonder if billions of pounds of this stuff is used around the world how radioactive landfills might get. Hopefully the radiation won’t get too out of control! If you’re cat begins to look as if it’s developing some genetic mutations, please change the litter immediately!
Many of us go to the doctor and have xrays or CT scans done and it’s been a huge advancement in medical technology. We don’t always think about what it takes in order for the doctors to see our bones and this is almost like a 3 type of xray! The doctors literally expose you to Ionizing radiation which are actually 5 times more radioactive normal Xray scans! The beam of radiation travels through our tissue but then absorbed by our bones. It then casts a shadow onto a photograph that doctors can study. One CT scan releases .01 sieverts which is much more than the yearly natural dose of radiation your exposed to naturally from our environment in a year. In fact one CT is equal to the same amount of 7 years of natural radiation You should certainly see if there are other options before taking more 5 CT scans in a year. Using MRI’s is the best way to go which doesn’t leave you exposed.
Inside Space Stations and Spaceships
One of the main problems astronauts have to overcome is the challenge with leaving the coziness underneath earth’s atmosphere. Space is a scary place folks and it’s easy for astronauts to be exposed to ionizing radiation and the spacesuit doesn’t keep them safe from harmful free radicals. Many people probably wouldn’t support nasa quite as much if they understood how harmful outer space can be to the people flying out there. This is also one of the main challenges with prolonged missions such as a flght to mars Space radiation took its toll on many men who blasted off of earth, many suffering from cardiovascular problems and cancer.