Your Fireplace Could Give You Cancer
Particles in smoke are as bad as car exhaust, say scientists
By Evann Gastaldo, Newser Staff
Posted Feb 7, 2011 1:14 PM CST
This is more dangerous than it looks.   (©SidewaysSarah)

(Newser) – Ahh, fireplaces: cozy, romantic, and … as bad for you as car exhaust fumes? Apparently so: New research reveals that breathing in the smoke from open fires or wood-burning stoves can lead to cancer, and heart and lung disease. The airborne particles in the smoke are particularly harmful because they’re so small they can reach the deepest part of the lungs, the Daily Mail reports.

Similar particles are created by coal-fired electricity plants and vehicle exhaust. When human cells were exposed to wood smoke, “substantial DNA damage and mutation took place,” says the lead scientist. “It was comparable to the effects of particles given off by traffic.” He adds that the danger can be reduced by only burning dry wood, cut into small pieces. The scientists also found that in rural areas, wood smoke particles contaminated nearby crops.

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Showing 3 of 27 comments
Mr. Wonderful
Feb 8, 2011 1:15 PM CST
What if you are born a Cancer June 22 - July 22? Are you doomed from the get go? Sucks to be you!
Drue
Feb 7, 2011 8:40 PM CST
Everyone's making the same joke. HAR HAR HAR Everything causes cancer! Well, there's a reason cancer rates have increased, guys. It turns out that all this modern shit we're doing is taking a toll on our bodies. Our bodies did not evolve to live in closed spaces full of synthetic chemicals and smoke.
hanunn
Feb 7, 2011 7:58 PM CST
Most of all, worrying about cancer gives you cancer.