The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has been telling us all along that we needn’t fear going through the full body scanners at airports, as it poses no threat to our health.  The technology behind the body scanners is called “millimeter wave imaging”, and according to the TSA’s Frequently Asked Questions page, this type of technology “uses harmless electromagnetic waves to detect potential threats”.  Though not ionizing in nature, millimeter wave technology machines have been known to be a contributing factor to cancer.  Basically, your skin is being microwaved.

Although one might believe that exposure to a certain amount of radiation microwaves may not be harmful, most scientists agree that pretty much any amount creates a risk.  Millimeter waves will destroy the cells they’re targeted at – in this case every cell on the surface of your body.  Microwave ovens operate at nearly the same frequencies as these machines.  They induce cellular vibrations strong enough to generate heat in food, so consider what it’s doing to your skin.

A World Health Organization (WHO) report states that millimeter waves not only heat the skin but also damage eyesight and cause cancer, particularly skin cancer.  The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has found preliminary evidence that these low levels of radiation may affect the immune system, which means the immune system may become compromised.

Our recommendation when air traveling is to choose a manual pat-down to minimize radiation exposure and therefore minimize the risk of developing cancer.