The Program
The Problem
Body Burden
A Toxic Journey
Children at Risk
The Evidence
The Options

Discuss the Problem
Link to Blood Test Transcripts
Email to a friend Make a Pledge
Moyers Mailing List
The Problem : Chemical Body Burden

Bill Moyers' Test Result
As part of a study of pollutant loads in the human body sponsored by the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, samples of Bill Moyers' blood and urine were analyzed. Eighty-four distinct chemicals were found.

His test results – much like a chemical fingerprint – revealed evidence of hazardous chemicals in common use – as well as compounds banned for more than a quarter century
and others so obscure that almost no public information is available to identify what products might have resulted in Moyers' exposure.

The results are not unusual. Each of us has some load of industrial chemicals stored in or passing through our bodies. These chemical residues – termed the "chemical body burden" – can be detected in blood, urine and breast milk. Most people are unaware that they carry chemical compounds in their bodies.

The health effects of chronic exposure to low levels of chemicals are only beginning to be studied. In addition, scientists have never assessed the effects of exposures to the endless combinations of chemicals found in people.

The chart below lists the broad groups of chemicals detected in Bill Moyers' blood and urine tests. The potential health effects discussed are based on persuasive evidence from studies of laboratory animals and wildlife, as well as some evidence from human studies. More

Roll over group for info, click for detailed description

Organochlorine Pesticides
Organophosphate Pesticides
Semivolatile Organic Comnpounds



Photo Credits: ©2001 Corbis

Resources  |  Program Credits  |  Site Credits  |  Site Map  |  Bulletin Boards  |   Home