Americans are flocking to defunct uranium mines in Montana for what many believe is a fountain of youth gushing with radioactive gas – in direct defiance of health warnings from experts…
The Environmental Protection Agency says the gas is the second-leading cause of lung cancer in the US, responsible for 21,000 deaths each year

The World Health Organisation also warns against exposure
Although doctors use radiation as a cancer treatment, the capacity for low-dose exposure to treat other conditions is the subject of fierce debate

“In clinical therapy, we know exactly what the dose is, we know exactly where it’s going” says Brian Marples, an oncology professor
Sitting in a radon-filled room deep inside a mine and having targeted radiation treatment at hospital, he said, are “chalk and cheese”
The gas forms when radioactive elements in mountain bedrock start to decay

Montana, in the Rocky Mountains, is the national hub

Punters pay $7 to $15 for a day in the mine. Outside one, a banner announces, “Fountain of Youth: FEEL YOUNG AGAIN.”
Chang Kim, one of the operators, said his mission was to help those with chronic medical conditions by putting stress on the body, which he claims jolts the immune system and reduces inflammation
People who want full immersion in the mine's radon-laced waters can sit in a tub as part of unregulated radiation therapy

This is deemed potentially dangerous by some radiation experts
No level of radon exposure is risk-free, health authorities say, though everyone encounters small quantities in their lives

Radon gas is usually removed from basements as a health hazard…

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More from @thetimes

17 Sep
Last week Lindsey Buckingham announced that he was fired in 2018 from Fleetwood Mac because Stevie Nicks made an ultimatum: it was either him or her. They chose her.

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