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Peeing in the swimming pool could be bad for your health!

As well as being unpleasant and socially unacceptable, new research suggests that a chemical in wee can react with chlorinated swimming pool water, creating potentially harmful byproducts.

The study in question used lab tests to study the reaction between a chemical found in urine (uric acid) and the chlorine in swimming pools. Researchers found that the combination of these substances can form some potentially harmful chemicals, known as nitrogen-containing disinfection byproducts (N-DBPs).

N-DBPs found at low levels in swimming pools have been linked to eye and throat irritation. At high levels, they can adversely effect the nervous and cardiovascular systems.

These byproducts were already known to be in chlorinated pools and to be formed from the reaction between chlorine and organic chemicals, such as those found in body fluids. This latest study confirms that uric acid is one of the potential sources of these chemicals.

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