While many of us are [beware / aware] of the environmental damage done by plastic, fewer people know about the [threat / treat] from the [ubiquity / ubiquitous] of microplastics. Scientists first found them in our bodies more than [the / a] decade ago. Worryingly, researchers have now found them [in / at] the human heart. Scientists at the Beijing Anzhen Hospital in China collected cardiac tissue [sample / samples] from 15 patients [ongoing / undergoing] heart surgery. After analyzing the samples, they discovered [tiny / tinny] pieces of plastic, from a multitude of sources. They included a plastic commonly used [as / has] a shatter-proof alternative to glass, a polythene [widen / widely] used in clothing and food containers, and a polyvinyl chloride used in construction.
The scientists reported [funding / finding] , "tens to thousands of individual microplastic pieces [in / at]
most tissue samples". Chemicals from microplastics are released [into / onto]
the body, potentially leading [on / to] allergic reactions, cancer, cell death, and chronic inflammation, among [others / other] complications. Scientists reckon the average person consumes around five grams of microplastics [a / in] week, or 52,000 particles a year. Microplastics are so prevalent that they make [up / down] 39 per cent of dust particles in our homes. Scientists say [these / them]
tiny shards are near-impossible to remove from the body. They say [they / it]
is becoming critical to limit the amount of plastic we [breathe / breath] , in ingest, swallow or absorb.