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Greenworld Article Samples

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greenworld Spring clean or toxic smog The hazards of household products By Anna Lisa Jones W hen someone says your house smells fresh and clean are they smelling your air freshener or scented laundry soap Or perhaps the tropical fruit floor cleaner that punches their senses the minute they open your front door Whatever it is it is anything but clean That spring fresh fragrance is made from a symphony of chemicals many of which are carcinogenic In fact the Canadian Lung Association lists air fresheners as hazardous products a frightening fact since North American consumers spend almost 2 billion on air freshening products every year Their usage has increased by half since 2003 with an estimated 75 of households now using them And here s another mind boggling fact Companies that produce fragrances or fragrance containing products are not required to reveal their ingredients as they are protected by trade secret laws What is not so secret among experts is that there are serious health issues arising from the use of air fresheners and other household cleaning products The University of Bristol published the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children which indicated that exposure to volatile organic compounds through the frequent use of air fresheners and other aerosols in the home was found to correlate with increased earaches and diarrhea in infants and with increased depression and headaches in their mothers A more shocking fact cited by the Environmental Protection Agency EPA in the US is that Women who stay at home or work in their home have a 55 higher cancer Read and dream risk than women working outside the home the reason exposure to toxic chemicals in household cleaners On a broader scale the EPA reports that toxic chemicals in home cleaning and personal care products are three times more likely to cause cancer than are outside pollutants The President of the United States Toxic Substances Strategy Committee warns that 90 of all cancers are triggered by toxic chemicals in our home environment The Government of California recently introduced new manufacturing regulations that will reduce the indoor toxic smog producing compounds in some 2 000 household cleaning products Precedent setting regulations such as these will help supply consumers with the safer products that they deserve and demand says Luis Cabrales deputy director of campaigns at the Coalition for Clean Air in California Chemicals have replaced bacteria and viruses as the main threat to health says Dr Dick Irwin Toxicologist at Texas A M University How ironic that the products we are using to protect ourselves from harmful bacteria are actually creating even more serious health issues So how can we truly spring into cleaning mode with a clear conscience The Environmental Health Association of Nova Scotia has created an excellent resource called The Guide to Less Toxic Products that lists healthier choices for many household items from cleaning products to cosmetics It provides a list of toxins found in different classes of products details how those toxins impact the body and offers you recipes for making your own natural cleaning products from basic household items such as baking soda vinegar salt lemon juice vegetable oil soap borax hydrogen peroxide and washing soda As for those disposable cleaning cloths soaked with chemicals replace them with one reusable high tech micro fibre cloth They can remove 99 of bacteria as well as clean surfaces thoroughly with just water and no toxic smog So what does a de toxed home smell like Nothing It is completely unscented and that makes real sense when it comes to having a healthy home Z 47

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