Scientists Measure Urine Levels in Pools By Testing Sweetness

Scientists have discovered a new way to measure water quality in pools...by measuring how sweet it is.

University of Alberta researchers published their findings in Environmental Science & Technology Letters. Researchers say compounds found in urine can be detrimental to human health.

The study says the widespread consumption of a synthetic sweetener called ACE, marketed as Sunett and Sweet One, and its complete excretion in urine, make it an ideal urinary marker. The sugar substitute is often used in processed baked goods, soda, protein shakes and in chewable and liquid medication.

Scientists analyzed more than 250 samples from 31 pools and tubs in Canada and ACE showed up in all the samples, at a much higher concentration than tap water. Researchers also measured the levels of ACE over three weeks in two pools.

Scientists say this study shows the human impact in pools and tubs.