Going Green, Detoxing, Chemical-Free, All-Natural, Organic… What’s all the fuss about? It’s cheaper and easier to get the non-organic fruit and veggies, and chemical-filled cleaners, right? Well, sure, if you don’t count your medical expenses in the future as part of the cost of life. How much are you willing to spend now, in order to make sure that you are healthy and disease-free in the future? How much is your life, your children’s’ lives, and your pets’ lives worth? Are they worth a few extra dollars to get the organic food and cut out chemicals now, or thousands of dollars to get rid of some terrible disease in the future that you could have prevented by “going green”?
Here are the three main reasons I’ve chosen to take all of the chemicals out of my house: Triclosan, Propylene Glycol, and Parabens. What language is this? English, I think, or maybe scientific names that originate from Latin, but we use them in English. Really, we do! Pick up any toothpaste, deodorant, cleaner, lotion, hair care, etc. in your house, and you will see these words or variations of these words. The problem is, no one knows what they mean. If people knew what they meant, people would not be using the products! Here is the “Cliff’s Notes” version of each of these chemicals.
· Used in almost every antibacterial soap and hand sanitizer
· Affects male and female hormones (thyroid)
· Contributes to antibiotic strains such as MRSA
TRICLOSAN is in soap and hand sanitizer? Isn’t that in hospitals, every teacher’s classroom, purses of every mom in the amusement park, and hooked to your child’s binder in an easy to access little pocket-size bottle? Have you ever squirted that stuff into your hands at the store before grabbing a shopping cart, or use those lovely little wipe thingies at WalMart? By trying to kill bacteria, viruses, and the flu, we have actually been slowly poisoning ourselves. Not only that, but the Food and Drug Administration has done studies and actually says that trisclosan is no better than regular soap and water! The FDA states that, “At this time, FDA does not have evidence that triclosan added to antibacterial soaps and body washes provides extra health benefits over soap and water. Consumers concerned about using hand and body soaps with triclosan should wash with regular soap and water.” On top of the fact that triclosan is no better than soap and water, the FDA has cited that in their research and experimentation, triclosan has serious side effects! For example, the FDA website states that “Animal studies have shown that triclosan alters hormone regulation. However, data showing effects in animals don’t always predict effects in humans. Other studies in bacteria have raised the possibility that triclosan contributes to making bacteria resistant to antibiotics.” In review, using this chemical alters animal hormones AND helps bacteria fight against the antibiotic we are using to try to kill it? Does anyone else see the irony here? In order to kill germs, we are actually poisoning ourselves and helping the germs to mutate enough to thrive!
· Found in cleaners, deodorants, toothpastes, detergents
· Linked to kidney damage
· Used as commercial antifreeze
· Can damage cell membranes (rashes, dry skin, surface damage, premature aging effects)
What do SMOKE MACHINES, ANTIFREEZE and YOUR TOOTHPASTE all have in common? You guessed it, PROPYLENE GLYCOL! As you clean your bathroom and kitchen counter (where you prepare food), you are smearing around a chemical that affects many body systems including the skin, kidneys, and respiratory. Hopefully, you don’t have any pets or kids that crawl around on the floor you just mopped, because they are picking up that propylene glycol on their tiny hands, feet, and paws, and then putting them in their tiny mouths. Additionally, washing the dirt off your clothes with detergents is necessary, but should it be at the expense of your kidneys and skin?
Not only is propylene glycol in our cleaners and detergents, but it is also in products that we put IN and ON our bodies. That’s right, every day, you are brushing your teeth with the same toxin found in antifreeze. Don’t forget that as you are putting deodorant under your arms, you are likely causing kidney damage and cell damage. The FDA states that “Propylene glycol can be ingested over long periods of time and in substantial quantities (up to 5 percent of the total food intake) without causing frank toxic effects… At lethal or near lethal doses (6 g per kg or more), however, it has been reported to cause kidney damage in several species and toe deformities in chicks.” As a mother of young children, I have a problem with giving my children toothpaste (that they accidentally swallow most of the time) that may cause toe deformities in the future.
· Endocrine disruptors
· Used as a preservative and germicide
· Found in most skin care products, lotions, creams, and deodorants
· Found in breast cancer tumors
· Banned in Japan, Sweden, and under review in the U.K
How many men are looking for a bit more estrogen in their systems? Adding some parabens by way of deodorant to your body is the way to do it! Wash it down with some GMO soy, and you’re all set. Chemicals that lead to kidney damage, and chemicals that lead to higher amounts of estrogen and breast cancer? It makes you think about what else is in the deodorant you use on a daily basis, doesn’t it? Not only that, but all the lotions, creams, skin care products that women spend hundreds of dollars on are full of these toxins too? The FDA states that “A study published in 2004 (Darbre, in the Journal of Applied Toxicology) detected parabens in breast tumors. The study also discussed this information in the context of the weak estrogen-like properties of parabens and the influence of estrogen on breast cancer. However, the study left several questions unanswered… The FDA believes that at the present time there is no reason for consumers to be concerned about the use of cosmetics containing parabens. However, the agency will continue to evaluate new data in this area.” The U.S. FDA says we shouldn’t be too concerned, but countries like Japan and Sweden have banned parabens, and the U.K is putting serious thought into doing the same.
Choose to Live Chemical Fee
I have thrown away all my hand sanitizer and antibacterial-marketed soaps, deodorants, cleaners, detergents, toothpaste, lotions, skin care, and cleaners! That’s right! I just threw them out! Does that mean that I’m now some unclean, unhygienic person, with stinky, dirty children? No! I have found “green”, organic, all-natural, chemical free products to use instead.