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Cleaning Products And My Health

By: Ron Lagerquist

"The Board of Health recently issued a statement that there is such a high degree of formaldehyde in our bodies that, when we die, we no longer decay."

The air inside your home is an extension of your lungs. You eat approximately two to three pounds of food per day, drink about three pounds of liquid, and breathe 15 pounds of air. You can live 40 days without food, three days without water, but only three minutes without air.

Whatever you eat goes through a digestive system enabling your body to separate nutrients and waste material. Lungs have no such defensive system. What you breathe goes directly into the bloodstream. It is then carried via the blood to every cell in the body. The poor air quality in our homes is so serious, that officials at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have stated that indoor air quality is the most significant environmental issue which we have to face now and into the next decade.

In 1989, the EPA submitted a report on indoor air quality to the United States Congress. The report concluded that North America's worst air pollution is found inside our homes. A five-year study, done by the EPA, showed that many homes had chemical levels that were 70 times higher than that of the air outside. In fact, they reported that cleaning and personal care products, commonly found in every home are three times more likely to cause cancer than air-born pollutants. It is estimated that 1,500 hazardous substances find their way into a typical North American home. The EPA estimates that 6,000 cancer deaths are caused every year by indoor air pollutants. In 1990, a scientific paper was presented by a Vancouver consulting firm in Toronto at the Indoor Air Conference. The study revealed that because of household consumables, housewives have a 55% higher risk of cancer than women working outside the home. The tragedy is that children are the most susceptible to this toxic environment. Children's respiratory rates are three times higher than adults, therefore they inhale and absorb three times the amount of contaminants. Our home, which ought to be a haven of safety for our children, has become a health-destroying environment. Since 1960, there has been an 80% increase in respiratory problems amongst children. For many of these children, puffers have become a permanent part of their lives. A temporary protection against inevitable disaster!

Mom goes off to the grocery store to do her shopping. She purchases her laundry soap, shampoos, and dish soap, believing them to be safe; trusting that her government would not allow products to be sold on the market that would harm her precious child walking beside her. After a long tiring day at the grocery store, she is finally home. Loading her shelves with brightly-colored containers, oblivious to the fact that she is filling her home with deadly toxic poisons. Strangers in white gowns bent over test tubes, had determined what would be present in every cell of her child's body.

Formaldehyde is in almost everything you use in your home, from toothpaste to laundry soap. It is used as a preservative. Nine billion pounds are produced every year in the USA. The Board of Health recently issued a statement that there is such a high degree of formaldehyde in our bodies that, when we die, we no longer decay. The National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health warns that formaldehyde should be handled with caution. It is a human carcinogen suspected of causing birth defects and genetic damage. It also causes headaches, joint pain, chest pains, depression, ear infections, chronic fatigue, dizziness, and loss of sleep. Here are some examples of cleaners commonly found in homes.

Dishwashing Detergent

The Center of Science in Public Interest revealed that dishwashing detergents have caused more household poisonings than any other cleaning product in the home. Nearly all dishwashing detergents contain naphtha, a fuel used in camping stoves. Naphtha is a central nervous system depressant. Other high-tech cleaning agents included are diethanolsamine which is a liver poison, and chlorophenylphenol which is a toxic metabolic stimulant. Chlorine is a poison present in nearly all dishwashing detergents. When washing your dishes, these chemicals are being released into your breathing space.

Air Fresheners

How do these products freshen your air? By releasing nerve-deadening agents or coating your mucus membranes with an oily film, hindering your natural ability to smell. The fresh air in a can may be able to fool humans but you will notice your pets wisely running for cover.

Tub And Tile Cleaners

On the back of Tile Power there is a warning, Use in well-ventilated areas. When have you been in a well-ventilated bathroom? This product is not recommended for use by persons with heart conditions or chronic respiratory problems. They go on to warn, avoid prolonged inhalation of fumes. Yet, on the front of the container, in bold attractive lettering, it proclaims, NEW FRESH SCENT. While enjoying the new fresh scent, you are being killed by the sodium hypochlorite and sodium hydroxide. Tile cleaners commonly contain ammonia and ethanol. Many people have complained of dizziness and nausea in using these powerful chemically-spiked cleaners.

Laundry Soap

Unless you live at a nudist camp, clothes are your second skin. Skin is a semipermeable membrane and is the largest organ of the body. Nicotine patches reveal how absorbent our skin is. If it is on your skin, it is in your bloodstream. Phosphorus, ammonia, napthaleaene and phenol, which are deadly poisons, are found in most laundry soaps. Some companies have proclaimed their products to be environmentally safe because they use enzymes. Enzymes have been considered a miracle cleaning agent. They direct the natural, cleaning ability of water to protein. This enables water to suspend dirt with great effectiveness. Yet enzymes are unable to detect a dirt protein from the protein in your skin and mucus membranes. Serious inflammation can result from breathing enzyme particles into the nasal passages and lungs. Clothes washed in enzymes can cause inflamed spots or rashes on the skin.

Fabric Softeners

Fabric softeners use an oily residue to cut down on static cling. Because it is not washed or rinsed from the clothes, a high concentration remains next to your skin and is being continuously absorbed into the bloodstream. Ammonia propellants and powerfully, strong synthetic fragrances can cause irritation, stuffy noses and watery eyes.

Oven Cleaners

Head in oven, holding our breath, squinting because of the fumes, we spray a toxic film where we cook supper. Holding our breath is no solution since the toxic vapors will linger in the house for over three months. And how about that roast beef, marinated in Easy Off?

Until recently, there has been little choice in improving the air quality of the home. There are now companies that produce safe, environmentally friendly consumable products. If you are interested in learning more, please refer to the Resource Center in the back of the book.

Related Article: The Detoxification Process

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masoud
I would love to see a list of alternatives to use instead of what is readily available on the grocery shelves!
This is great information. Could you kindly provide alternatives to the toxic items above? Thanks, Kim
Kim
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