For more on this topic check out the link:
Make Up Danger for Pregnant Women December 19, 2008
Tags: Beauty, Cosmetics, Health, moms, pregnant mom, Skin Care
For more on this topic check out the link:
Some Children’s Bath Products Hazardous, Groups Say March 22, 2007
Tags: Baby, Cancer, Children's Bath Products, Environmental Protection Agency, Health, Health related, Healthy Baby, Healthy Children, organic, Persoanl Care Products, toxic chemicals
Reprinted. By Carlene Olsen, Cox News Service/New York Times News Service
Dallas Morning News
February 9, 2007
WASHINGTON – Some children’s bath products contain a suspected cancer-causing chemical in amounts that reach or exceed recommended limits, environmental groups charged Thursday.
Johnson and Johnson, Disney, Kimberly-Clark, and Gerber are among the makers of 15 children’s products that contain 1,4-dioxane, David Steinman, head of the environmental publishing company Freedom Press, said at a news conference.
The petroleum-derived chemical is classified by the Environmental Protection Agency as a probable human carcinogen, and the National Toxicology Program considers it a known animal carcinogen, according to the Environmental Working Group, which also took part in the news conference.
In 2000, the Food and Drug Administration recommended that cosmetic companies limit the concentration of 1,4-dioxane in products to 10 parts per million. But the FDA does not regulate cosmetics, leaving companies to monitor the safety of their products on a voluntary basis.
Steinman said a study he commissioned from the West Coast Analytical Service lab in Santa Fe Springs, Calif., showed that Hello Kitty Bubble Bath, made by Kid Care, contained 12.3 ppm of 1,4-dioxane. Johnson’s Kids Shampoo Watermelon Explosion, made by Johnson and Johnson, contained the maximum recommended level of 10 ppm, he said.
In addition, two adult shampoos tested by the lab found twice the recommended level of the chemical, he said.
The Environmental Working Group, meanwhile, said it had conducted a computerized assessment of ingredients in 15,000 cosmetics and other personal care products which shows that 1,4-dioxane may be present in 57 percent of all baby soaps.
Iris Grossman, director of communications at Johnson and Johnson, said, “It’s important to stress that all our products are within the FDA limits.”
The chemical is typically a manufacturing by-product, which companies are not required to list on labels along with ingredients, said Grossman. “And our suppliers guarantee that (levels) are within the FDA limit,” she said.
At the news conference, medical experts said that bath products could be linked to other children’s health problems.
Research suggests a link between ingredients in common bath products and early puberty development in children, said Devra(cq) Davis, director of the Center for Environmental Oncology at the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute.
Children’s fast-paced growth rate and porous skin increases their susceptibility to toxins that can enter the bloodstream through the skin’s surface, Davis said.
Jeanne Rizzo, executive director of the Breast Cancer Fund, said that “an increased risk of breast cancer is linked to toxic exposure that occurs in the most vulnerable period of our lives.”
Making Living Green, Organic, Non-toxic Easier for Mom, 14 Tips January 21, 2007
Tags: Baby, Clean Air, Cleaning Products, Eco, Enlightenment, Green, Health, Health related, Healthy Ingredients, Home, house, organic, toxic chemicals
Many people ask me how to start going organic and live a healthy organic lifestyle? There are so many products, so much information they don’t know where to start. Other questions I get are: Do I need to buy everything organic, food, cleaning products, clothes, personal care and skin care products? Are you vegan? Do I have to throw everything away and start from scratch? Where do I start? It gets expensive. What does it mean by going organic?
Lets start with my definition of going organic and living an organic lifestyle. To me going organic is more than the food I eat. It is about making healthy choices with the food I eat, the products I use in my home, on my skin and body, and in my garden. To me organic, green, non-toxic living is about eliminating toxins from our homes and life. It is about the environment and ensuring that it is clean and healthy because last time I checked we are all earthlings which means we are part of the environment. If the environment is unhealthy then so are the earthlings. Finally, going organic, non-toxic and green is treading lightly on the earth so that I leave it better than I found it for future generations.
Here are some simple steps to help you transform your home from conventional, toxic to organic, non-toxic, safe, green and healthy. First I would like to say that it isn’t about being perfect or having everything in your life organic and green. A few simple changes will make a huge difference in the way you feel and in moving forward to an organic, green, non-toxic, healthy lifestyle. Take one step at a time and have fun.
There are a couple of different ways you can incorporate organic living into your lifestyle. One is to use the products you have now, finish them and replace them with healthy, organic choices as needed. The other choice is to throw everything away and replace your old choices with healthy new organic products. Either choice is awesome. Note: If you are throwing away cleaning products that are made with chemicals be sure to do it properly. Contact your local waste management company and ask them how to safely dispose of chemical products.
I took the slow less expensive root and used products until they were finished then I replaced them with green, organic choices. Products like food, cleaning products, personal care, skin care and gardening products were choices I started with when I went green. I took one step at a time to a green, organic lifestyle. It seems the more I do the more that I want to do.
Remember do what is right for you not what your friends and neighbors are doing. You and your family are the only factors to consider here. Also it isn’t about being perfect or who is doing the most or making the biggest changes. What matters is that you are giving your family healthy choices and every healthy choice you make for your family is one step closer to the short term and long term health goals you want to achieve.
Take one step at a time and notice how the changes are affecting your family and how you feel about these changes. Maybe keep a diary of why you want to live an organic, green, non-toxic lifestyle and then note in the diary the changes that you are making and how they are affecting your family’s health.
For example, maybe you have allergies or a member in your family has allergies and you decide that you want to change your cleaning products so that they are non-toxic in an effort to see if that clears the allergies. Write this in your diary and notice if the allergies subside and even if they go away.
Another example is maybe you change some of the foods you eat to organic and you notice that your children have more energy or they are more focused; write that in your diary. In a month or 2 go back to the diary I bet you will notice that a lot has changed with your families health. Lastly be sure to celebrate your successes. You deserve it. Remember it isn’t about being perfect it is about making a few simple changes here and there.
Below is a list that I created, especially for mom’s, to help them make the switch from conventional to organic, green and healthy.
3. Reduce your waste
4. Any food with High Fructose corn syrup is a big no! Especially if you are protecting your family against obesity. It gives the false feeling that you are still hungry even when your body is full and has zero nutritional value. It is not a necessary food ingredient ever. Read labels carefully as it is used often. You will be surprised how often it is used, even in foods labeled as natural or organic.
5. Eat as many organic foods as possible. If your family eats a lot of something like pasta, absolutely eat organic pasta instead of conventional. Chemicals and pesticides build up in your body over time. Children are most susceptible to pesticides and toxins from conception to 10 years old. Here is a list of foods that are a must avoid. If you only want to change some foods that you eat put these on your list:
· Juice – many also contain high fructose corn syrup so be careful and read labels.
· Oats – commonly used in cereal
· Baby Foods – get baby started off right. Also baby’s immune systems are not yet fully developed so they are more susceptible to the adverse effects of toxins.
· Green & Red Bell Peppers
· Hot Peppers
· Green Beans
1. Use non chlorine bleach it works just the same as regular bleach without the toxins.
2. Body lotion for you, children and baby. Remember when you hold or play with your children they touch your skin and body thus toxins from you can rub off on them. Most personal care products contain a large list of toxic, unsafe chemicals like parabens, phthalates, sodium lauryl sulfate, sodium laureth sulfate, ammonium lauryl sulfate, DEA’s, TEA’s to name a few. Read labels carefully. Try to use products that are organic and free of chemicals. For more information on safe cosmetics and personal care products go to, http://www.ewg.org/reports/skindeep. They have information on popular baby products too.
3. Face lotion for you and children they also contain many toxic chemicals. A common ingredient used in skin care products especially those that claim anti aging ingredients is methylparaben. Methylparaben has been linked to accelerating aging. Isn’t it ironic?
4. Products that contain phthalates are an absolute must avoid, especially if you have children. They are found in perfume, nail polish, hair care products like hair spray, deodorant and lotions. Phthalates can be carcinogenic and have been linked to birth defects. They also damage the liver, kidneys, lungs, and reproductive system in laboratory animals according to the center for Disease Control. Phthalates are used many products but are not listed on labels in order to protect “trade secrets.” That is where confusion enters. So the best rule of thumb is avoid conventional perfumes, products with fragrance, conventional nail polish remover and nail polish. Don’t panic. The good news is that you don’t have to give up your favorite nail polish color to avoid toxins. There are non-toxic alternatives to all of the aforementioned products. For example, many perfumes and fragrance are made with pure, organic essential oils and are safe. There are non-toxic nail polishes and nail polish removers. Choose products that are fragrance free especially if you are using them on or around your children and baby. If you are pregnant or have children avoid products with phthalates at all costs. Your unborn child’s health and your children’s health are fragile. Before the age of 10 their immune systems aren’t yet fully developed thus chemicals stay in their tiny bodies where they can cause disease and even obesity.
5. Avoid cleaning products or any products that contain anti bacterial ingredients. Antibacterial ingredients contain pesticides. According to the EPA, http://www.epa.gov, pesticides are designed to kill living organisms. They don’t discriminate between pests and humans. The key word here is living organisms. The bacteria and viruses that anti bacterial products kill are also killed with simple warm soap and water. Don’t let marketing hype tell you that you need these products to kill germs in your home. If simple soap and water is good enough for hospitals then it is good enough to kill germs in your home. Why add a layer of pesticide to your surfaces, especially where children and pets play and spend time?
6. Stain remover for clothes is highly toxic use non-toxic. To treat a stain use simple soap and water. Immediately when you notice a stain pore clear liquid soap right on the stain add a little water and throw it in the dirty laundry until laundry day. In most cases the stain will come out. Stains set when they aren’t treated immediately and they are allowed to set into the material of clothing.
7. Conventional air freshener – contains carcinogens. This is a huge NO, especially if you have children. The toxins are inhaled and absorbed through the skin. Extremely dangerous. Instead eliminate the source of the odor. For example if the trash smells, take it out. On nice days open a window. If you must add fragrance to your home use pure, organic essential oils. A trick I use is to drop 3 to 5 drops on a light bulb that will be turned on. Or make your own air freshener using essential organic oils. Simply fill a 29 to 32 oz. spray bottle with distilled water and add 20 to 25 drops of essential oil. Spray the air, your furniture I even use it to iron with. Cook muffins or cookies to make the air in your home smell good. On a cold winter day make some apple cider on the stove and let it simmer on very low heat to add fragrance to your home.
8. Use organic mattresses or put heavy cotton over your conventional mattress – If you can’t or don’t want to replace all of your mattresses with organic then put heavy cotton material over the mattress under the fitted sheet. If possible use organic cotton material. Absolutely do this for your baby and children as they are more susceptible to the effects of toxins found in conventionally made mattresses, because their immune system and organs aren’t fully developed. Toxins found in synthetic mattresses include; phthalates, PBDE – flame retardants, polyurethane, foam, polyester, plastic, formaldehyde. They all emit dangerous toxins that your baby or children breathe in or absorb through the skin while sleeping. In many cases these toxic elements lead to insomnia, have been linked to brain development and thyroid problems, include eye, nose, and throat irritation; wheezing and coughing, fatigue, skin rash, severe allergic reactions and may cause cancer. In asthma suffers formaldehyde has been known to cause asthma attacks.
9. If you have children or pets and they will be on the floor playing use simple soap and water to mop your floors. Otherwise the children and animals are playing on a toxic surface where they are absorbing toxins into their skin and body.
If you find that your supermarket doesn’t carry organic, non-toxic products ask them to. Marketers and supermarkets know that women make the majority of the buying decisions in the US. Yes women you have the power, use it. Tell the supermarkets what you want. If they don’t get it right away, tell them again, and again and again until they carry the products you want. Ask your friends and family to chime in. Don’t give up, you can make a difference.
Remember take only the steps that are right for you at this time. Follow your instincts they are your guide, they are true to you. Once again I will say it; you don’t have to change everything if you don’t want to. Simple changes to start make a big difference. Take baby steps. For example, change the food that you eat to organic. Then change your cleaning products one by one. This is something that should be fun and enjoyable. After all you are protecting your health and your family’s health so that you have a long future together, that is something to smile about.
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Slip into Something More Organic December 27, 2006
Tags: Beauty, Eco, Eco Businesses, Environment, Fashion, Green, Green Businesses, Health, Health related, organic, Organic Clothing, Organic Fashion, Organic listings
By Gillian Flower
Tip! Baby Foods: A 1995 report found 16 pesticides in approximately half the non-organic baby food samples.
Many of us have made the shift towards an ecologically-aware lifestyle. Perhaps you have chosen to eat organic foods, to buy more locally made products, or to switch to public transport. While you may be living sustainably in many parts of your life, is this choice reflected in the clothing you wear every day?
Why Change your Clothes?
The clothing industry is rife with issues that deserve our attention. Child labour and poor working conditions are often part of clothing manufacturing in distant factories.
Our environment is threatened by the heavy metals in most dyes and by pollution from synthetic fabric production. Even “natural” alternatives like cotton aren’t as pure as they seem. So what choices are out there for the fashion-savvy shopper with a conscience?
Despite perceptions of cotton as a “natural” alternative, the production of this fibre is chemically intensive. Twenty-five percent of the world’s insecticides are used on cotton crops alone. To put this staggering number into perspective, the cotton T-shirt that you may be wearing right now required a third of a pound of chemicals for its production.While you may not be aware of the pesticide residue in your wardrobe, our air, water, and soil all feel the effects. We know that cancer rates increase with the use of some pesticides, and choosing to wear organic clothing has an impact on everyone’s health.Happily, thanks to rising consumer awareness, organic cotton clothing is increasingly available.
Major manufacturers are making the switch to organic threads, leading the charge for real changes in the clothing industry. Active wear companies like Mountain Equipment Co-Op (mec.ca) and Patagonia (patagonia.com) have developed impressive product lines made from organic cotton. Anti-sweatshop advocate American Apparel (americanapparel.net) now offers 10 styles for men, women, and children in their Sustainable Edition line.
Tip! Mulching – This is a great way to prevent soil erosion, add organic matter to the soil and reduce evaporation. However, you need to leave space around the base of each plant.
Hemp Hemp Hooray!
Although some still confuse hemp with its well-known cousin, marijuana, this ancient plant is enjoying popularity as an eco-alternative to conventional fabrics. Growing hemp is kinder to the planet than growing cotton, as this resilient, adaptable plant requires little water or chemical additives.
Hemp fibre has some unique and interesting characteristics, which makes it a suitable replacement for conventional fabrics. Historically, hemp was used to make rope and sails, items that made use of the plant’s impressive tensile strength. Today, clothing companies like Of The Earth (oftheearth.com) and Hemptown (hemptown.com) promote hemp’s wicking properties and its resistance to bacteria and mould. Hikers and outdoor enthusiasts appreciate hemp’s insulating properties. Like wool, this fibre breathes well in hot weather, insulates in cool weather, and retains heat when wet. The wicking properties of hemp make it a great first layer for any outdoor enthusiast.
Tip! Do not always assume organic is more expensive. Look at the prices of conventional and organic products and compare.
The Future of Fibre
As hemp and organic cotton become more available, manufacturers are experimenting with creative blends using these fibres. In their 2004 collection, Of the Earth introduced an ingenious T-shirt fabric that blended soy with organic cotton and Lycra, resulting in a hard-wearing but delicate fabric that is silky-soft against the skin.
Clean Clothes, manufacturers of Maggie’s Organics (organicclothes.com), has been making simple, basic, wearable pieces since 1992. Recently, the company moved organics into the future by launching their first natural performance sock. Blending Coolmax, a patented wicking fabric with organic cotton, Maggie’s sport socks ensure that both your feet and conscience are kept happy.
So take the next step towards an organic lifestyle by simply changing your clothes. You can make a great difference with simple, conscious choices.
Tip! You will have no additives in your vegetables. Research by organic food associations has shown that additives in our food can cause heart diseases, osteoporosis, migraines and hyperactivity.
Gillian Flower is an environmental products specialist with Grassroots Environmental Products in Toronto. As a student at the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine, she plans to bring an awareness of environmental issues to her future practice as a naturopathic doctor. She is a regular contributor to alive magazine. Visit http://www.alive.com for related articles.
size=”1″>Tip! Sustainability. In his book, Gardening Organically, John Fedor defines sustainability as “the ability of a society or an ecosystem to function indefinitely without squandering the resources on which it relies.
Grow your own
The cheapest method has got to be to grow your own. The great thing is that it doesn’t require you to have much garden space, or even a garden at all!
We grow tomatoes, and strawberries in containers and the extra benefit is that you get total control over the growing conditions.
The best combination is to have organic soil together with organically produced seeds or plants, that way you ensure you get the full flavour and benefit.
Containers can be placed anywhere that receives a reasonable amount of daylight, which means that you can use them on balconies or other hard surfaces.
Tip! Strawberries: 500 pounds of pesticide an acre is sprayed on non-organic strawberries.
Look for your local suppliers
One of the most satisfying things to do is to buy organic food locally. That way you get the freshest ingredients for your kitchen and also get to support local businesses. With no transportation costs for the supplier too you should get very competitive prices.
Don’t forget that these same businesses will be employing local staff so you are also helping the local economy, everybody wins in this scenario.
We visit a big monthly market held on a disused airstrip. Organic food is just one of the variety of items sold there but the prices are very, very good indeed. Of course they are all local suppliers and with several of them in one place we benefit from healthy competition and get to sample a lot of fruit!
Tip! Failing to plan – Planning is crucial to a successful organic veggie garden. You need to consider the aspect of your plot/s.
Local box schemes
If you are unable to get out of your house or are too busy working to select your groceries by hand then why not subscribe to an organic box scheme?
You will receive, delivered to your door, a weekly selection of fruit and vegetables in season.
Finally, investigate whether any farms near you are operating an organic farm shop. Our local one is operated on an open farm so that you can go and see where the animals are being kept and take a look at the crops being grown.
Tip! Bananas: Non-organic bananas from Central and South America are produced using benomyl (linked to birth defects) and chloropyrifos (neurotoxin).
They actually have a well-designed walking route around the farm which makes a nice day out for the kids too.
If you investigate the options above you should be able to make considerable savings whilst you and your family sample the delights and advantages of organic food.
Virginia Louise is a keen convert to the organic way of life, having two children has especially highlighted the benefits to be gained by them from eating organically.
Virginia runs an information site on the advantages of organic food where you can obtain lots of free information about what makes organic food so beneficial, where to get it and suggested recipes.
Eat Organic Flax Seed for Your Health December 16, 2006
Tags: Flaxseed, Health, Health related, Healthy Ingredients, organic, Organic Flaxseed, organic food, Organic listings
Tip! Environmental Stewardship. Gardening organically means that the environment benefits from the reduction in contamination of the water supply and air pollution.
Flaxseed oil, and flaxseed is both rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids which are great for your health. Flax helps the body in several ways. Flax helps improve the cardiovascular health of the individual. This is because flaxseed has massive levels of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. These fatty acids lower LDL cholesterol levels. LDL cholesterol is considered bad cholesterol and having less lowers the risk of blood clots, heart disease, and heart attacks. Other foods have similar levels of fatty acids, fish oil and algae; however flaxseed is much more functional in that it can be easily incorporated into the diet. Flaxseed is great for colon health. Being high in both forms of fiber, soluble and insoluble, it acts as a natural laxative, and lubricant. This protects the colon from polyps and colon cancer.
Flaxseed can also give the body’s immune system a well needed boost. Studies have shown that school aged children who ingested less than a teaspoon of flaxseed oil daily have less respiratory infections than children who did not take flaxseed. Omega-3 and omega-6 fats are precursors of brain building molecules therefore increasing the amount of these fats that are available directly increasing the development of the brain. This is especially true for infants and even babies in utero. Many women who are pregnant use flaxseed supplements in their diets and even while breastfeeding after birth.
Flax is also great for the skin. Flaxseed has the ability to treat patients who suffer from skin disorders from simple dry skin and eczema. The antioxidant properties of flaxseed help the skin hold in moisture which helpful in preventing wrinkles and reversing the aging process. Also, flax helps to stabilize the blood sugar levels especially in patients suffering from type I and type II diabetes.
Tip! Mulching – This is a great way to prevent soil erosion, add organic matter to the soil and reduce evaporation. However, you need to leave space around the base of each plant.
Weight loss is also increased by flaxseed. Any fat that is high in fatty acids can increase the bodies metabolism. It can help to burn the excess bad fats within the body while letting the body use the good fats for energy and storage from flax. The process of storing fat is called thermogenesis and must be controlled in order to loose weight. Try flaxseed today for all your health needs!
Tip! Grow your own. Even a small window box can yield some organic herbs or tomatoes.
View our recommended source for 100% organic Flaxseed. http://www.flaxseedpro.com is a great site for all of your flax seed needs. There is also a section of the site dedicated to Flaxseed Information with many articles and postings by customers.
Tags: Dark Organic Chocolate, Green, Health, Health related, organic, Organic Chocolate, organic food, Organic listings, ProGreen Blog
Tip! Sustainability. In his book, Gardening Organically, John Fedor defines sustainability as “the ability of a society or an ecosystem to function indefinitely without squandering the resources on which it relies.
Not many of us need a reason to eat chocolate, but here are the six reasons to only eat dark, organic chocolate:
Unless chocolate is organic it contains pesticide residue. Here is what those FDA approved levels of residues do to you:
• Glyphosate — effects on digestive system tissue, genetic damage, effects on reproduction, carcinogenicity
• Hydrogen Cyanide — acute toxicity, thyroid effects, nerve degeneration
• Naled — central nervous system disruption; headaches, nausea and diarrhea
• Pyrethrins — carcinogenicity, reproductive and developmental toxicity, neurotoxicity
• Methyl Bromide — prostate cancer, kidney and liver effects, neurological effects
Dark chocolate has been proven to improve blood pressure.
Dark chocolate can improve glucose metabolism/diabetic control.
Dark chocolate contains high levels of naturally occurring plant flavonoids called polyphenols. These flavonoids are antioxidants.
Another type of polyphenol found in chocolate prevents fat-like substances in our bloodstream from oxidizing and clogging arteries, making blood platelets less sticky to each other.
The fat in chocolate is comprised of heart healthy oleic acid, stearic acid (which neither raises nor lowers cholesterol) and palmitic acid, which raise cholesterol. (only 1/3 of the fat raises cholesterol!)
The above benefits are negated when you eat milk chocolate. The proteins in milk bind antioxidants and make them less available to be absorbed. Also, most light colored chocolates contain large amounts of sugar, which can adversely affect the immune system. When cocoa is processed into your favorite chocolate products, it goes through several steps to reduce its naturally pungent taste. Flavonoids (polyphenols) provide this pungent taste. The more chocolate is processed (such as fermentation, alkalizing, roasting), the more flavonoids are lost. Remember, those are antioxidants being processed away!
Research done on an isolated island showed inhabitants rarely had high blood pressure, even though they drank about five cups of cocoa each day and incorporated it into many of their recipes. Their cocoa though was not sprayed with pesticides, was not processed and did not have added milk, sugar or soy lecithin as an emulsifier.That chewy, caramel-marshmallow, nut-covered milk chocolate bar that you feel guilty about has no health benefits and can only add to health problems. If you want to have your chocolate and eat it too, then choose dark, organic chocolate. A square of dark organic chocolate a day just may help keep the doctor away. Now, that’s the best reason of all!
© Page Remick – All Rights reserved http://www.purezing.com
Page Remick is lead reviewer for Pure Zing, the Internet’s only natural and organic products review site. Remick and the PZ team search for unique and artisanal products that are not mass-produced and found on every grocery store or health food store shelf in the country.http://www.purezing.com
Tags: Aspen, Clean Air, Eco, Eco Businesses, Emissions, Environment, Global Warming, Green Businesses, Health, Health related, Healthy Ingredients, organic, ProGreen Blog, Sustainable, toxic chemicals
Aspen, Colorado city employees recieved bonuses for helping to reduce greenhouse gases in their city. Congrats Aspen. Check out the article in the Aspen Times, the link is,
Aspen reduced it’s emissions by 10.5% which is what most cities are increasing their green house gases by. What a great idea to thank city employees for their hard work by giving them a bonus for helping to decrease gases. Aspen is doing what it takes to make a difference and better their community. They are setting a great example for other cities. They plan to further decrease their emissions in years to come.
I love solutions. Another toxic problem being over come.