Saturday, January 1, 2011

Avoid the Fate of the Three Headed Frog - Detoxify Your Home First - Lesson One

Thoughts to Ponder

How do you define toxic? A toxic substance can be defined as any substance that is capable of harming a person if it enters the body in a large enough dose. A toxic chemical is any chemical which through its chemical reaction on life processes can cause death, temporary incapacitations or permanent harm to humans or animals. There are virtually three ways in which toxins can enter our bodies: by ingesting, by inhaling or by contact with the skin or eyes.

Patty Avey -

In the course of your bus day have you ever taken the time to consider whether or not your household cleaning products, personal care products, even pet products contain potentially harmful toxins?

In this eCourse we will identify, examine and discuss harmful toxins that may be present in the home, their effects on health, and ways to eliminate them or significantly decrease their usage and make the home environment a sound and safe place to live.

For starters, lets take a little tour under the sink in the kitchen:

dishwashing detergent

dishwasher detergent

disinfectant spray

drain cleaner

floor wax or polish

glass cleaner

dishwashing detergent

oven cleaner

scouring powder

tub and tile cleaner

Typical chemicals that can be found in these items include:

* sodium hypochlorite (in chlorine bleach): if mixed with ammonia, releases toxic chloramine gas. Short-term exposure may cause mild asthmatic symptoms or more serious respiratory problems;

* petroleum distillates (in metal polishes): short-term exposure can cause temporary eye clouding; longer exposure can damage the nervous system, skin, kidneys, and eyes;

* ammonia (in glass cleaner): eye irritant, can cause headaches and lung irritation;

* phenol and cresol (in disinfectants): corrosive; can cause diarrhea, fainting, dizziness, and kidney and liver damage;

* nitrobenzene (in furniture and floor polishes): can cause skin discoloration, shallow breathing, vomiting, and death; associated with cancer and birth defects;

* formaldehyde (a preservative in many products): suspected human carcinogen; strong irritant to eyes, throat, skin, and lungs.

Source: Tennessee Valley Authority Regional Waste Management Department
By Gary A. Davis and Em Turner - University of Tennessee - Knoxville Waste Management Institute

Knowledge is Power:

The first step in detoxifying the home and personal environment is awareness. Before moving on to the next lesson, your assignment is to take an inventory of the the products that you are using in the kitchen and see if you can find any of the chemicals described above.

Happy Cleaning,

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