Because if you can’t helium or curium, you “Barium”!
Barium is a metal that forms persistent insoluble compounds in the environment. It is used to make bricks, glass, rubber, and ceramics. These compounds are also a result of mining, refining, and the combustion of fossil fuels, as well as metal fabrication.
The greatest potential for exposure comes from food and water, however levels in these items are typically very low. Small amounts are permissible and generally considered non-toxic. Living near working or waste sites and working in a job that involves barium production or use will increase your levels of exposure.
The toxicity of barium depends on the compound and its solubility. Substances that do not dissolve well, such as barium sulfate used by doctors, are generally not harmful. Barium causes a host of gastrointestinal issues, muscle weakness, and high blood pressure. Consuming large amounts of barium can result in kidney damage, paralysis, and possibly death.
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