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Everyday toxic things  RSS feed

 
Nicola Marchi
Posts: 79
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So I was at a bookstore this morning, and found a book that seemed to call to me. Toxic Free by Debra Dadd. While i'm only about a quarter of the way through the book, I have become horrified with how many things we consider harmless that we are exposed to every day that do in fact harm us.

So i thought we could start a thread on all the really innocuous hazards to our health that are all around us.

In the just first few pages the biggest shock to me was that most bedsheets contain Formaldehyde. I didn't believe it, so i did a lot of searching on the internet, and i gave up hoping that it wasn't true when i heart for the upteenth time to buy drapes to use as bedsheets. Needless to say i'm sleeping on the floor tonight.
 
Brenda Groth
pollinator
Posts: 4434
Location: North Central Michigan
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my family has always become sick when we are around strong scents, like scented candles, room sprays, plug ins, perfumes, etc..we can all get violently ill (headaches, sinus infections, sneezing, etc)

artificial food additives are also really bad and are in a lot of foods that have "natural" on the label..read the labels..

a lot of the "natural" things that you bring from other people's property or buy to put on your gardens are literally toxic soup..never accept leaves, woodchips, manure, etc from places that use herbicides, pesticides, etc..and if you grow mushroooms, know that most hay bales are treated with fungicides..as are a lot of other things..that will kill your mushrooms.

even things that are marked organic ..generally are full of toxins..

and those cfl's that the government is basically ordering you to buy, can kill you.
 
John Polk
steward
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Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
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We live in trying times. It seems that each time we watch news on the TV we learn of another danger in our midst.

"The air is polluted...the rain is acidic...the sun causes skin cancer..."
It makes me want to lock myself in my house, BUT..."Most accidents happen at home."

We are surrounded with dangers, but I believe that the stress caused by worrying too much about it is just as dangerous for us.
Be cautious, but do not let fear dictate your life.


 
Peony Jay
Posts: 145
Location: B.C.
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One of my favourite topics.
http://www.amazon.ca/The-Secret-History-War-Cancer/dp/0465015662

The dangers in everyday HABA products. (Health and Beauty) The book -"There's Lead In Your Lipstick"
http://www.amazon.ca/Theres-Lead-In-Your-Lipstick/dp/0143172506

Find the rating for your HABA products. How 'non-toxic' are they anyhow?
http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/

 
Randy Bachman
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I am new, so forgive me if I mess up. Paul mentioned going "pooless" in a podcast recently. He was refering to doign away with shampoo. It imediately struck a chord in my immagination. So I am now on day 5 of going completely soapless. The only topical chemicals I have placed on my body are a small bit of soap to shave with, and toothpaste (no swallowing). It is an interesting experiement, and I would be happy to share my experiences so far. Living in Houston, and working outside this weekend was a real stress test , but so far no disastors. He mentioned it as something on the forums, but I can't find it. Could one of you point me to where this idea came up?

Thanks
 
Patrick Thornson
Posts: 147
Location: Zone Five, B.C., Western Canada.
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Do infrared saunas or traditional saunas or sweat lodge.

Drink plenty of pure water.

Be kind to your liver. Don't abuse drugs or drink too much alcohol.

Eat/drink bitters. They're good for the liver, you know.

Exercise moderately.

Don't worry.
Be happy!
 
Shelly Randall
Posts: 73
Location: Central Valley California
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To add to the Health and Beauty info. Parabens have been linked to breast cancer in France. Parabens are preservative agents found in everything from shampoo to underarm deoderant. Anything that has water or could possibly come in contact with water is given a tiny dose of preservative to keep that water from growing any harmful bacteria, fungi or mold. I make lotion on occasion and choose other preservatives that do not contain parabens, but then again, those others contain things like formaldeyde. The problem is you can't sell these items on the market because they WILL start growing something moldy within a week, and there WILL be black mold showing within a month. I met a woman from Russio at my farmers market booth where I sell hand made soap. She said that over there they sell lotion that you keep refrigerated for a week until it expires which contains no preservatives. The only reason I could think of why we don't do that here is that Americans are dumb and sue happy. I could see someone buying lotion, using it after it's expiration date, then getting some sort of horrendous disease and then suing the seller and winning even though it was their own bad judgement that caused it.

Some things that are basically harmless in soaps and other items: sodium tallowate (lye and animal fat) anything sapponified (lye and an oil) titanium dioxide (pigment made in a lab that is basically a type of metal rust, any type of oxide pigment is the same. stearic acid (derivative from oil) most acids in soap are really just fat or oil components.

I can't vouch for the processing just the the basic substance.

Fragrances: some essential oils are processed with chemicals, and a doctor on a board told me that fragrances can't cause cancer. As a seller of soaps, I can assure you people can have allergic reactions.

citric acid is processed using large amounts of mold, and there can be mold residue in the citric acid, so if you are mold sensitive, this could be an issue





 
Jocelyn Campbell
master steward
Posts: 4151
Location: Missoula, MT
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books food preservation forest garden hugelkultur toxin-ectomy
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Air is an everyday thing. And unfortunately more toxic than I had realized.

Leaded gasoline was linked to higher crime rates - especially in cities where leaded gasoline fumes were more concentrated: http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2013/01/lead-crime-link-gasoline.



I found it staggering and scary that lead has affected behavior so dramatically.

It's a good thing that leaded gas is no longer commonplace, but it made me think again about several things. Finding ways to reduce our reliance on petroleum, finding ways to protect the air we breathe and wondering what other plastic or petroleum toxicities have yet to be identified.
 
Frank Turrentine
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I sell heavy-duty hand cleaners for printers and mechanics. When the company started making this stuff back in the 70s, there wasn't really the same mindset we have now so widespread. The folks I work for don't really think about it much. We talk about how there are no harmful chemicals in our hand cleaner - and compared to some, I suppose that's true. But it contains nonoxynol-9, which is a spermicide. I don't know that that's a huge problem, but I imagine it's not the kind of thing that is good to have flowing into the sewers all over the place. But still, our Material Safety Data Sheet doesn't look radically different than what you'd find on Cool Whip. That should give you pause the next time you pass a tub of Cool Whip, really.

Thing is, on the one line of hand cleaner we manufacture that we label as "organic" there is formaldehyde to prevent the mold mentioned earlier. It's called organic because, instead of the poly-bead scrubbers we use in place of pumice, it contains granulated corn cob. There are a lot of folks who snap this stuff up because it's labeled organic, but I don't believe they really think it through much. For one thing there's the formaldehyde. But also, I would assume that it is GMO corn as well that is used for the scrubbers. I don't know that that is a major concern for topical applications like that, but it's another link in the distribution chain for that stuff, and I object to it on principle in any case.

Then again our biggest selling product, which I have no part in selling, is a drilling lube for the oilfields that is dumped directly down the holes to keep the drill bits free of gunk and unclogged. They pour it out of five-gallon pails right into the ground.

These are nice folks who I work for, but I still feel like I'm part of the problem by even participating in that concern. I look forward to retiring early and living full time at the farm.

About the toothpaste: I use baking soda and a sprinkle of salt. My teeth feel clean, and I don't have to worry about whether I swallow it or not.
 
Andrew Greaves
Posts: 63
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i tried doing the poo-less thing for the last 3 months or so and no, i didnt stink nor did anyone say that i did. my family was totally clueless except for one night when i first started, my wife asked if i used soap because i was sticky. i just ignored her. after about 2.5-3 months in i got "almost sick" and then in about a week i would say i was "sick" for about 24 hours with cold like symptoms both times. i attribute this to not killing the bacteria that i was running into during our cold season on a daily basis. i have seen a news report on different tips and tricks that health professionals use in order to avoid getting sick and one that i remember is to take a shower( and of course on the news report it went without saying that you use soap) right away when you get home and put the clothes in the laundry basket right away. soap may be toxic, but one thing is undeniable . it kills germs, bacteria, viruses etc. i have been scrubbing with dr. bronners for two days now. sorry, paul, i respect your work alot but i think youre wrong on this one. on the other hand, with all the chlorine in the water, it seems like all the germs would die off anyway.
 
Jocelyn Campbell
master steward
Posts: 4151
Location: Missoula, MT
389
books food preservation forest garden hugelkultur toxin-ectomy
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Andrew Greaves wrote:soap may be toxic, but one thing is undeniable . it kills germs, bacteria, viruses etc.


I do agree that going poo-less is not for everyone. Though I think there are some differences in soap - some could arguably be considered non-toxic - and there are differing views on how it interacts with germs - bacterial or viral. There are "anti-bacterial" soaps that do have additional chemicals to kill bacterial, but generally, (more biology trained folks, please chime in here!) I think most soaps work to release germs from their contact with the skin by emulsifying things - skin cells, oils, etc. - so that it all washes off easier.

So, IMHO, washing hands (and bodies) helps minimize the spread of germs by washing off the germs, not necessarily killing the germs with soap (again, depends on the soap). I think I've heard that doctors and surgeons scrub for a minimum of 10 minutes because it is actually the physically scrubbing that is more detrimental to the bacteria, and cleans it off better, than the soap.

I have gone a full year poo-less now, and while I'm still working out the best routine to keep my hair oils in check with baking soda and vinegar, my skin, scalp and hair are all FAR healthier than when I used soap. My psoriasis scabs and bald spots are gone and my skin is not scaly-dry in places as it once was even when using moisturizing soaps. Plus, I've been living in a very small house with, at times, 8-12 other people since last summer, and there were a few different occasions where several of them got ill and I did not. I had a mild version of the ick that knocked down about half a dozen people, but otherwise, I have not been in bed ill for almost an entire year.

I/we use (non or least-toxic) soap to wash our hands, just no soap or shampoo/conditioner in the shower. The goal I'm striving for by going poo-less is to have healthy bacteria and healthy skin oils protect and soften the skin. Soaps strip the skin and scalp of those oils and the good bacteria along with the bad. It's working for me - and I'm saving money, time and energy, too.
 
Patrick Mann
Posts: 303
Location: Seattle, WA, USA
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Jocelyn Campbell wrote:Leaded gasoline was linked to higher crime rates - especially in cities where leaded gasoline fumes were more concentrated [...] I found it staggering and scary that lead has affected behavior so dramatically.


Interesting, but also important to bear in mind that correlation does not equal causation.
 
Jocelyn Campbell
master steward
Posts: 4151
Location: Missoula, MT
389
books food preservation forest garden hugelkultur toxin-ectomy
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Patrick Mann wrote:
Interesting, but also important to bear in mind that correlation does not equal causation.


True...and if you look at the data a bit deeper, it is from a wide variety of cities with different dates for getting rid of the leaded gasoline. There could have been something else that happened at these different time frames in each of these different locations, but I would think the chances of that would be rather slim. In my mind that makes it a probable link (link not causation - slight semantic difference).
 
John Merrifield
Posts: 92
Location: West Virginia 6a Avgerage Rainfall 54" est. Average snowfall 36"
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Randy,
You asked for some help finding the topic "Pooless"
How about these:
http://www.permies.com/t/22876/toxin-ectomy/making-jump-poo

the podcast:
http://www.permies.com/t/22356/podcast/Podcast-Poo-Shampoo-Soap

John
 
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