You probably use many household chemical products in your home, whether knowingly or unknowingly. But did you realize that a lot of these products can be really dangerous for you and your family?
As consumers, when we buy commercial cleaning products, we expect them just to clean. But it’s unfortunately not that simple. In fact, some cleaners are among the most toxic products found in the home. On the bottles they show safety tips, symbols showing hazard, danger, explosive, flammable and poison, and warnings about potential injury and health related safety concerns. Yet we still use them to clean our home.
Over 84,000 chemicals have been registered with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the last 30 years. On average 700 are being added every year. You can find some of the toxic substances that you may have in your home at the US Department of Health website — although out of the 84,000 that have been registered, they have only tested 500 chemicals for toxicity!
Many ingredients in cleaners can contribute to long-term health conditions, such as cancer or hormone disruption, which can interfere with the body’s natural chemical messages, either by blocking or mimicking the actions of hormones.
Fragrances added to many cleaners like laundry detergents may cause acute effects, such as respiratory irritation, headaches, sneezing, allergy and can be especially severe for asthma sufferers.
The National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health has found that one third of the substances used in the fragrance industry are toxic. However, the chemical formulas of fragrances are considered trade secrets, and companies are not required to list their ingredients.
So what we can do?
Of course, we can not simply choose to live in a non toxin environment. But we can minimize our exposure by choosing the correct products for our health.
One good resource is the Environmental Working Group’s (EWG) research for the top “green” cleaning products.
I personally like to use Dr. Bronner’s liquid soap, baking soda, white vinegar, and the Dr. Shaklee products. ***
We can not always control the world around us, but we can control our choices. Keep your healthy body, it’s the only really thing you have!
* you can find Dr. Bronner’s products in many health food stores or at https://www.drbronner.com. You can find info on the Shaklee products at https://www.shaklee.com (and order online via a Shaklee partner like https://healthangel.ca/).