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Thursday, May 19, 2011

Environmental Impact of Household Chemicals Part 2

This is a second article in a series of quotes and facts from doctors, health professionals, the EPA and more on how the toxic chemicals we use everyday impacts our lives and those around us. To read the first article in the series click Environmental Impact of Household Chemicals - the Vulnerability of Children

Exposure to Household Chemicals

· There are over 80,000 chemicals registered with the EPA and less than 20% of them have been tested for toxicity.
Today there are more than 80,000 synthetic chemicals.
Dr. Philip Landrigan, Professor of Community and Preventative Medicine at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, said less than 20% of the estimated chemicals manufactured in the past 50 years have been assessed for their neurotoxicity.
Children, because of their size and more future years of life, have a higher risk of early and prolonged exposure to chemicals than adults. The National Research Council (NRC), which is part of the National Academy of Sciences, conducted a study of 100 random chemicals. The study found that nearly 78 percent of these chemicals lacked even minimum toxicity standards.

Sources: U.S. EPA, New Chemicals Program; Landrigan, P.J., et al, (2006). The national children’s study: a 21-year prospective study of 100,000 American children. Pediatrics, 118(5), 2173-2186.

· A person who spends 15 minutes cleaning scale off shower walls could inhale three times the “acute one-hour exposure limit” for glycol-ether containing products set by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment.

Sources: News-Medical.Net; University of California at Berkeley.

· It has been estimated that a person who cleans four houses a day, five days per week, 50 weeks per year, could inhale about 80 micrograms per day of formaldehyde, double the guideline value set by California's Proposition 65.
In addition, the person's intake of fine particulate matter during the hours spent cleaning would exceed the average federal guideline level for an entire year. These quantities are in addition to the formaldehyde and particulate matter that the person would be exposed to from all other sources and activities during the year.

Sources: News-Medical.Net; University of California at Berkeley, Household Chemicals.

· Several chlorinated chemicals can cause cancer and other serious health problems.
Chlorinated chemicals can come from consumer products, dry-cleaned clothes, and treated municipal water. Air levels of these chemicals, therefore, are generally higher in the home than outdoors.
Many commonly used consumer products contain chlorinated chemical solvents, such as trichloroethylene, methyl chloroform, perchloroethylene, and methylene chloride. These products include glues, spot removers, spray cleaners, water repellents, spray paints, paint strippers, and automotive products.

Sources: California Environmental Protection Agency, Air Resources Board, Chlorinated Chemicals in Your Home, May 2001.

· Studies conducted in the United States indicate that people spend an average of 87% of their time in enclosed buildings.

Source: Klepeis, N.E., Tsang, A.M., and Behar, J.V. Analysis of the National Human Activity Pattern Survey (NHAPS) Respondents from a Standpoint of Exposure Assessment. Final EPA Report, EPA/600/R-96/074: Washington, D.C., 1996.

· Organic pollutants are 2 to 5 times higher inside homes than outside.
According to the EPA, sources of organic pollutants from household cleaners include:
solvents; wood preservatives; aerosol sprays; cleansers and disinfectants; and air fresheners.
Health effects from organic pollutants include: Eye, nose, and throat irritation; headaches, loss of coordination, nausea; damage to liver, kidney, and central nervous system.
Many organic compounds are known to cause cancer in animals; some are suspected of causing, or are known to cause, cancer in humans.

Source: U.S. EPA.

These statistics and quotes are quite scary. The chemicals in our home, under our sinks and being used everyday can pose such a danger to us in ways we never imagined.
We all want a clean, safe home for our families, but if what we are using is causing more harm than good, how do we achieve a clean home without hurting our families in the process?
By using safe, proven and effective cleaners designed by nature and perfected by science.
I hope you found this information helpful and that you reconsider the toxins being used in your homes today.


For more information on how toxic cleaners can cause serious health problems and some safe solutions available, you can read this article: Health Hazards Associated With Household Cleaners
Or you can view this short video here > Healthy Home Video  and choose “Healthy Home” (near the bottom of list)
For more information visit our website at:

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