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Monday, November 21, 2011

Report Reveals Hidden Chemicals in Common Household Cleaners

Report Reveals Hidden Chemicals in Common Household Cleaners

11-18-2011

Women’s Voices for the Earth

New independent lab testing on 20 top household cleaning products reveals that top-selling cleaning products and detergents, including Tide Free & Gentle, Pine-Sol and Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner, contain toxic chemicals not revealed to the consumer. The results show that cleaning products commonly contain hidden chemicals linked to cancer, birth defects and pregnancy complications. The tests were commissioned by the national nonprofit Women’s Voices for the Earth (WVE).
This report, Dirty Secrets: What’s Hiding in Your Cleaning Products?, came the same day Rep. Steve Israel (D-NY) introduced the Cleaning Product Right-to-Know Act—national legislation to change the lax regulations around the disclosure of cleaning product chemical ingredients. Currently, cleaning products are not required to list ingredients on the label, so unlike personal care products and food, there is no way for consumers to know the full list of ingredients in cleaners.
“Our cabinets are full of soaps and cleaners that we assume improve our homes and health. However, new research shines a light on the secret chemicals that might be doing more harm than good. You have a right to know what’s hiding in your household products. That’s why I’m introducing legislation to require full disclosure of the ingredients in everyday cleaning products,” said Rep. Israel.
WVE commissioned tests of 20 cleaning products including laundry detergents, dryer sheets, air fresheners, disinfectant sprays and furniture polishes manufactured by Clorox, Procter & Gamble, Reckitt Benckiser, SC Johnson and Son and Sunshine Makers (Simple Green), at an independent laboratory. The test results revealed:
  • Tide Free & Gentle detergent, a fragrance and dye-free product marketed to people with sensitive skin and mothers of infants, was found to contain 1,4-dioxane, a probable human carcinogen
  • Simple Green Naturals was found to contain phthalates, a chemical associated with reproductive disorders and birth defects
  • Allergens were found in products marketed as “fragrance-free”
  • Hidden reproductive toxins and carcinogens such as phthalates, toluene, 1,4-dioxane and chloroform
  • None of these chemicals were listed on the product label
“We’d like to see consumers have the freedom to make informed choices in the store, to protect their families from toxic chemicals,” said WVE director of science and research and report author Alexandra Scranton. “The system we have now is broken—it’s unnecessary for these risky chemicals to be used in products we use every day. Companies need to phase out these harmful chemicals, and we need a policy that standardizes labeling guidelines for cleaning products, so companies can’t keep these toxic chemicals a secret.”
More than 80,000 chemicals are on the market today, but nearly 20 percent of them are kept secret, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Consumers have been uncertain about the safety of chemicals in cleaners, even in products marketed as “green.” There has been a decline in the sale of cleaning products nationally, environmental and health concerns being one of the contributing factors. Some consumers are favoring homemade cleaners using vinegar and baking soda, for safety and cost reasons.
“I’ve heard complaints from hundreds of people who said that air fresheners and other fragranced household products made them sick—causing headaches, breathing difficulties, seizures, asthma attacks and other health problems,” says Dr. Anne Steinemann, professor of civil and environmental engineering and public affairs at the University of Washington. “This report does a tremendous service by revealing the hazardous chemicals that can be hidden in cleaning products, so that consumers can know to avoid fragrances and other chemicals that are linked to serious health problems.”
WVE’s 2007 report Household Hazards found that Latina women are particularly at risk for overexposure to toxic chemicals through cleaners. Nationally, more than one-third of domestic cleaners are Latina women. “Latino families want to protect their families from toxic chemicals, but that’s really difficult when ingredients are kept secret, and companies like P&G are aggressively marketing to Latino consumers,” says Lorena Garcia, executive director of the Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity and Reproductive Rights (COLOR). “We will be working to educate Latina women specifically about the hazards and risks associated with using these kinds of products.”
WVE has engaged the five major companies investigated in this report in an effort to encourage full disclosure of chemical ingredients and removal of toxic chemicals in cleaning products. WVE has been one of the lead advocacy groups calling on Congress to strengthen ingredient disclosure requirements for cleaning products. The Cleaning Product Right-to-Know Act of 2011 will require companies to list all of the product ingredients directly on the label and will create a uniform system for labeling.
To download the report, click here.
For the fact sheet with the table of products tested and results, click here.
For more information, click here.

So glad I don't use these products!

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Did You Know......?


Did you know.................
50% of all illness is due to poor indoor air quality (Source: 1989 State of Massachusetts Study)
AIR FRESHENERS: interfere with the ability to smell by coating nasal passages with an oily film, or by releasing a nerve deadening agent! Toxins in air fresheners include: Formaldehyde: highly toxic, known carcinogen. Phenol: can cause skin to burn, peel, and sweat. Can cause convulsions, coma, circulatory collapse and even DEATH!

LIQUID DISH-SOAPS: is the leading cause of poisonings in the home for children under the age of 6 (over 2.1 million accidental poisonings per year) (contains formaldehyde and ammonia in most brands) One Million poisonings in Canada each year are due to household cleaner ingestion. Some are fatal. The #1 cause of household poisoning is dish detergent. What kinds of chemicals are in those products? http://www.rense.com/general19/chemical.htm

AUTOMATIC DISHWASHING DETERGENTS: contain dry chlorine that is highly concentrated. #1 cause of child poisonings, according to poison control centers.

CHLORINE BLEACH: is a strong corrosive and can burn or irritate skin, eyes and the respiratory system. Can cause vomiting or coma if swallowed! WARNING! Never mix with ammonia as the fumes are very dangerous and can be DEADLY!

AMMONIA: is very volatile and damaging to the eyes, skin and respiratory tract!

FURNITURE POLISH: contains Petroleum Distillates, which are highly flammable and can cause lung and skin cancer!

DRAIN CLEANER: most drain cleaners contain lye, hydrochloric acid or trichloroethane, which are all very caustic. They burn the skin and eyes, and can cause liver and kidney damage.

OVEN CLEANER: contain lye, which is a strong caustic and irritant to skin and eyes. Can cause tissue damage if swallowed.

TOOTHPASTE: can contain a number of harmful ingredients, such as: ammonia, benzyl alcohol/sodium benzoate, colors, ethanol, flavours, fluoride, formaldehyde, mineral oil, plastic (PVP), saccharin. Formaldehyde, mineral oil, PVP, and saccharin are all classified as carcinogens or suspected carcinogen, as is fluoride, which has been banned in many European countries and is the subject of concern with regard to thyroid problems. In fact, as of April 1997, toothpaste is required to carry poison control information on the label as even a small amount can harm or kill a small child.

Occupational Safety & Health analyzed 2,983 chemicals used in personal care products. A personal care product is de-fined as anything we use to clean our bodies, or make ourselves look or smell good.
The results are as follows:
884 are toxic
146 cause tumours
218 cause reproductive complications
314 cause biological mutation
376 cause skin and eye irritations
778 caused acute toxicity

Over the last 20-30 years, as more toxic chemicals have been introduced in greater amounts, the level of toxins stored in adipose tissues (fat cells) of our bodies has risen. Bio-accumulation studies have shown that some toxins store in our bodies for life. Greater and greater amounts are being stored at younger ages. Diseases that used to occur later in life are now appearing at younger ages. Diseases that used to be rare are more frequent. For Example: There has been a 28% increase in childhood cancer since the addition of pesticides into household products. (Source: National Cancer Institute)

In one decade, there has been a 42% increase in asthma (29% for men; 82% for women-the higher rate for women is believed to be due to women's longer exposure times to household chemicals) (Source: Center for Disease Control)

Due to the increase in toxic build-up in our bodies, including the toxic build-up of formaldehyde, dead bodies are not decomposing as fast as they used to. (Source: National Institutes of Health)

There is an increased risk for leukemia in children where parents have used pesticides in the home or garden before the
child's birth (Source: Journal of the National Cancer Institute)

Over 150 chemicals found in the average home have been linked to allergies, birth defects, cancer and psychological
abnormalities. (Source): Consumer Product Safety Commission

In most cases, however, you won't find much information on the label. There are no requirements of manufacturers to actually disclose what is in a product, and there is no regulation or enforcement. All of it falls under proprietary trade secret legislation.

Today, cancer is the leading cause of death for women ages 35-74. In 1901 cancer was considered a rare disease. Statistics show that only 1 out of 8000 people had cancer. TODAY, according to the American Cancer Society, 1 out of every 3 people has cancer. TODAY, 1 out of every 2 people has been touched by cancer. The fear of cancer is on every-one’s mind these days. So many forms of cancer and they all had to start somewhere . . .

How Safe is My Family?
This is the question that every parent should be asking themselves.

We have no choice but to breathe the air, eat the food, and drink the water; but we DO have a CHOICE of what we put on our skin and what products we have in our homes.

I know that I personally do not ever want to believe that I caused harm to my family, when I had the choice to change it. I’d love to help ensure a safer home for your family.

For more information on how to make your home a healthier place for you and your family please go to my website and I will call you with the information. I would love to help you have a healthier safer home!
Jennifer McLennan
www.WorkAtHomeMomJen.com

QUOTES TO LIVE BY!

"To be successful, you must love and believe in what you do! You must have belief in yourself! Anything is possible with belief!"
Written in 2011 by Jennifer McLennan (ME) --- Canada
I truly think if you don't have belief in what you are doing and in yourself, there is no chance in success. But if you do have the belief, all things are possible!

"Life's like a boom-a-rang. The more good you throw out, the more you receive in return." ~Josh S. Hinds

"Treat people how you want to be treated."~Unknown

"Honesty is always the best policy."~Unknown

"No act of kindness, know matter how small is ever wasted."~Unknown

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