5 surprisingly common things that are putting you and your family at risk
Most of us try and maintain a healthy lifestyle. We wear sunscreen, we buy organic veggies, we go to the gym, we ditched straws to help the environment… but what if I told you your every day deodorant could be linked to cancer? This isn’t meant to scare you or shame you for not already knowing; if you’re like me you had NO IDEA these things were harming your health! Just remember with knowledge comes power. We hope this gives you the chance to make some healthier choices. Ok, buckle up, it’s time to expose some of the frightening facts about products we use every day.
1. Air Freshners
If you’re like me, you spray air freshner on everything- couch, carpet, air, (husband’s dirty clothes pile!). My dog spends more time on my couch than me so I regularly go to town with the spray can to mask those annoying pet odors- particularly before company comes over! Unfortunately, according to the NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council) toxins, particularly phthalates, found in air fresheners can accumulate in the body over the time and make you sick. These toxins affect hormones and reproductive health, especially in children. Yikes. So whats an alternative? We suggest essential oils in a diffuser or spray. Sidenote- If you have pets, like me, do your research on your oil choice as some, like peppermint or tea tree, can irritate dogs and cats!
2. Plastic Containers/ Tupperware
According to Poison.org (yea, it’s a real site and it will take you down a rabbit hole real quick…) plastic #7, which gives off BPA after repeated use, can cause negative behavioral affects and a myriad of health issues including decreased fertility. Leftovers with a side of anger please? Actually, this may explain a few things about my co-workers. Ok so what about my ‘BPA free’ plastic containers? As more consumers have become aware of this nasty chemical, many big manufacturers have made the switch to different compounds which they market as ‘BPA free’. Think baby bottles, reusable water bottles… Unfortunately, a new study suggests the replacement is just as bad and causes hormonal disruption. (Again with the mood affecting tupperware… this really explains A-LOT!) Opt for glass containers instead. If you can’t afford to switch yet, at least avoid microwaving plastic containers as it hastens the release of harmful chemicals.
Yep. It’s true. One of the “sweat-blocking” ingredients found in antiperspirants is aluminum. Many studies indicate aluminum in antiperspirants can contribute to the development of breast cancer and Alzheimers disease. While the U.S. Food and Drug Administration does require a warning label on all antiperspirants, who knew THAT’S why until just now?! Don’t freak out, you don’t have to go ‘au natural’ but you should consider making the switch. There are tons of aluminum free brands you can choose from. In fact, so many consumers are making the switch it’s rumored big brands are beginning to get on board with ditching the aluminum. Until then we like to use Toms, Kopari, It’s All Good and Schmidts.
4. Non-Stick Pots and Pans
Probably something you use every day (unless you have an instapot!). I was very concerned when I found PFOA, a chemical used in non-stick cookware, is linked to causing ovarian, kidney, and prostate cancers, as well as non-Hodgkin lymphoma. What the heck? And this is on our pots and pans? Yep. SO when you sprung to get the non-stick pans you were upgrading your pancake game and downgrading your health. What should you use instead? Ceramic cookware brands, such as WearEver, are durable and have toxic free non-stick coatings that are safer and more environmentally friendly PLUS they only cost about $30 for an 8″ and a 10″ pan so replacing those pans you got for your wedding won’t sting as much. Cast Iron companies like Lodge are both reasonable and non-toxic. Heatproof Glass for oven baked dishes is both safe and affordable, our favorite is Pyrex. Finally, stonewear, which is similar to ceramic, is a great non-toxic alternative. Some boast worth brands include Stoneline or Rada.
5. Canned Food
Baked beans on toast happens to be one of my favorite meals. Unfortunately, Bisphenol A (BPA), is found in most canned food containers. (sigh). As we learned from tupperware, BPA is a hormone-disrupting chemical linked to infertility, heart disease and diabetes etc. so if possible, opt for fresh or frozen foods.
Moral of the story? In the event of nuclear winter, those of us that survive can eat canned food but will eventually become infertile from the BPA and humans will go extinct anyways. Too depressing? Ok, sorry. Well it’s a good thing there’s only 5 things on this list… I was starting to think everything I own was slowly killing me.
Interested in some light reading on the way the USA regulates toxins in our products and foods? Read this Washington Post article: The bizarre way the U.S. regulates chemicals — letting them on the market first, then maybe studying them
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