Radioactivity

Levi Pearson levi at cold.org
Thu Feb 22 09:42:04 MST 2007


"Daniel C." <dcrookston at gmail.com> writes:
> On 2/22/07, Charles Curley <charlescurley at charlescurley.com> wrote:
>> Well, you're already radioactive. But being exposed to enough
>> radiation can increase your own radiation. That's in addition to the
>> other damage that radiation can cause. For most people, most of the
>> time, it isn't an issue. If the old BYU reactor was properly run and
>> cleaned up, it shouldn't be an issue. I've never heard of anyone
>> refusing to play squash at the University of Chicago.
>
> So, my real question - does irradiating food to sterilize it make the
> food itself radioactive, or increase its radioactivity?

I'm not sure that simply being exposed to radiation would indeed
increase your own radioactivity.  If radioactivity is caused by
radioactive elements, being exposed to radiation would have to change
some atoms in your body to radioactive forms.  I don't think radiation
generally does that.

However, if your exposure was in the form of ingesting radioactive
substances, your own radioactivity would certainly increase.

                --Levi
                 



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