August 12, 2013
I came across this chart not too long ago (see below) after reading a physics book and trying to understand the various particles released in beta and alpha emission. I think it mentioned bananas being radioactive. Now that sounds terrible! I had to find out more because I either had forgotten or never knew about this. My son eats bananas like a monkey! Well, no one needs to get anything in a wad over this. My son would need to eat 5 million bananas to do himself harm. How does any of this relate to vision? The only relationship is that in some of the decay of potassium there’s a gamma ray emission which is a type of photon. We can’t see gamma rays but they are very energetic and they are in the photon family of electromagnetic radiation way beyond what our eyes can detect.
Bananas aren’t the only food we eat that is radioactive. Before I say anymore, every day we’re exposed to radiation (come on! light is radiation, heat is radiation, it’s ok!). There are a lot of natural forms that we just can’t avoid. Some other radioactive potassium foods: Brazil nuts (even higher potassium decay rate), potatoes, kidney beans, sunflower seeds and other nuts. If you’re reading this and start feeling like you should eliminate those from your diet you couldn’t find any place in this universe to escape radiation. Our bodies are probably dealing with all kinds of things that are normal that we didn’t even realize were happening to us. I just hope if you’re reading this and want to read up a little more on gamma rays or other forms of radiation, I hope you find a website that is NOT trying to scare you into buying their pills or diets or contraptions.
I’ve found a few websites below that you can check out that might explain a little more about banana equivalent dose and what it means. Regarding that chart I found, someone created it to try and show what kind of radiation exposure resulted from the Japanese Fukushima nuclear reactor leaks from March 2011. Hopefully I didn’t scare any of you. I just find this kind of stuff fascinating when I read about it.