CREATE A SAFE AND HEALTHY HOME: KNOW YOUR A, B, C's
By Dr. Joyce M. Woods
A. Begin by thinking of your home as a toxic waste dump. The average home today contains 62 toxic chemicals - more than a chemistry lab at the turn of the century.
B. More than 72,000 synthetic chemicals have been produced since WW II.
C. Less than 2% of synthetic chemicals in wide spread use have ever been tested for toxicity, birth defects or their mutagenic or carcinogenic effects.
D. The majority of chemicals have NEVER been tested for long-term effects.
E. An EPA survey concluded that indoor air was 3 to 70 times more polluted than outdoor air.
F. Another EPA study stated that the toxic chemicals in household cleaners are 3 times more likely to cause cancer than outdoor air.
G. CMHC reported that houses today are so energy efficient that "out gassing" of chemicals has nowhere to go, so it builds up inside the home.
H. We spend 90% of our time indoors and 65% of our time at home. Moms, infants and the elderly spend 90% of their time in the home.
I. National Cancer Association released results of a 15-year study concluding that women who work in the home are at a 54% higher risk of developing cancer than women who work outside the home.
J. Cancer rates have almost doubled since 1960.
K. Cancer is the number one cause of death for children.
L. There has been a 26% increase in breast cancer since 1982. Breast cancer is the number one killer of women between the ages of 35 and 54. Primary suspects are laundry detergents and bleach, household cleaners, and pesticides.
M. There has been a call from the U.S./ Canadian Commission to ban bleach in North America. Bleach is being linked to the rising rates of breast cancer in women, reproductive problems in men, and learning and behavioral problems in children.
N. Chemicals get into our body through inhalation, ingestion and absorption.
O. We breathe 10 to 20 thousand liters of air per day.
P. There are more than 3 million poisonings every year. Household cleaners are the number one cause of poisoning of children.
Q. Since 1980, asthma has increased by 600%. The Canadian Lung Association and the Asthma Society of Canada identify common household cleaners and cosmetics as triggers. (This figure is higher than the figure cited for the increase in childhood asthma in the U.S. by the EPA. Even so, both cite a huge increase in the prevalence of asthma.)
R. ADD/ADHD is an epidemic in schools today. Behavioral problems have long been linked to exposure to toxic chemicals and molds.
S. Chemical and environmental sensitivities are known to cause all types of headaches.
T. Labeling laws do not protect the consumer - they protect big business.
U. The New York Poison Control Center reports that 85% of product warning labels are either inadequate or incorrect for identifying a poison and for first aid instructions.
V. Formaldehyde, phenol, benzene, toluene and xylene are all found in common household cleaners, cosmetics, beverages, fabrics and cigarette smoke. These chemicals are known to be cancer causing and toxic to the immune and nervous systems.
W. Chemicals are attracted to, and stored in fatty tissue. The brain is a prime target for these destructive organics because of its high fat content and very rich blood supply.
X. The National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health has found more than 2500 chemicals in cosmetics that are toxic, cause tumors, reproductive complications, biological mutations and skin and eye irritations.
Y. Fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, arthritis, lupus, multiple sclerosis, circulatory disorders, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's disease, irritable bowel syndrome, depression, and hormonal problems are diseases commonly related to chemical exposure.
Z. Pesticides only have to include active ingredients on the labels, even though the inert (inactive) ingredients may account for 99%, many of which are toxic and poisons.
Whew! What a list! ...Click here for more sobering statistics and solutions