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Why you shouldn’t make tea with chlorinated water

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Making a cup of tea with chlorinated water can create disinfectant by-products that scientists haven’t ever recognised, and don’t know what effect on our health they may cause.

But it’s not too much of a worry for the average tea drinker: the scientists reckon that someone would have to drink between 18 and 55 cups a day before they’d be in any danger.

Boiling water that’s been chlorinated helps reduce disinfection by-products (DBPs), but a chemical reaction happens when tea—rich in more than 500 compounds, including polyphenols and amino acids—is added.  Around 60 new DBPs get created, and it’s a similar reaction with all three of the different types of tea the scientists tested.

(Source: Environmental Science & Technology, 2021; doi: 10.1021/acs.est.1c03419)

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Article Topics: water
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