Surprise! Radioactive Water Jugs Not as Healthy as Advertised
Think you know why an early-20th century drinking-water jar lined with uranium ore was a serious health risk? Surprisingly, radioactivity was only a minor part of the problem, a new study says.
In the early 1900s, a radioactive ceramic water jar marketed to the U.S. public as a health boon turned out to be, well, a load of crock.
But according to a new study, radiation from the jug wasn't the biggest problem. Makers of the Radium Ore Revigator promised the jug would enrich drinking water left inside overnight with "the lost element of original freshness—radioactivity." The "treated" water was supposed to relieve everything from arthritis and senility to flatulence.
(Related: "Radiation in Teeth Can Help Date, ID Bodies, Experts Say.")