The conveniences of modern life expose us to a wide range of chemicals. Image Credit: sxc.hu
Scientists have discovered dozens of previously unseen chemicals that most of us carry within our own bodies.
The study, which was conducted by researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, discovered a total of 55 chemicals that had never been reported in people before.
Out of these, 42 of them were classed as 'mystery chemicals' because it was unclear exactly where they had come from or what impact they might be having. It is believed that most of them made their way into the body from various consumer products or industrial processes.
They were even found in the blood and placentas of pregnant women.
It is important to note however that these chemicals have likely been with us for years.
"These chemicals have probably been in people for quite some time, but our technology is now helping us to identify more of them," said Professor Tracey J. Woodruff.
"It is alarming that we keep seeing certain chemicals travel from pregnant women to their children, which means these chemicals can be with us for generations."
Previously identified chemicals found within the human body include those found in pesticides, cosmetic products, flame retardants, various pharmaceuticals and PFAS compounds.
Their presence is a direct result of our use, consumption of and interactions with them in our everyday lives and it seems unlikely that this will change anytime soon.
Exactly what type of effect they may be having on us however remains unclear.