While at the Farm to Table Conference in Pittsburgh last week, I attended several learning sessions that highlighted the levels of toxicity in our lives, both from natural and synthetic sources. These toxins encompass the entire eating process from chemicals in our water to the plastic plastic we use to eat and store our food…and the list goes on.
Over 1,000 new chemicals are introduced into our environment every year. Health or safety data exist for only about 15 percent of new chemicals submitted for approval to the Environmental Protection Agency. Meanwhile, tens of thousands of older chemicals — those on the market before the Toxic Substances Control Act of 1976 — require no safety testing at all. So don’t think the government or big business is protecting us from these toxins.
While everything is toxic, some things are more toxic than others. You need to drink a lot of water to die of water poisoning, but it doesn’t take a lot of rat poison to kill you.
The good news I took away from these learning sessions is that our bodies are miraculously designed to filter many common toxins. And we must practice more control over the products we buy. On a personal level, I will be more adamant about checking product labels. And I promise to buy a stainless-steel water bottle instead of using the plastic ones I have now. At a national level, we must continue to move the needle on containing the dangers of lead, mercury, asbestos, and cigarette smoke - toxins universally accepted as dangerous.
Where to learn more: The Household Products Database from the National Library of Medicine, provides chemical safety sheets for thousands of consumer products. And Think Dirty is a new mobile app that educates consumers on the cosmetic products.
Guest Post written by:
Michele Garvey – editor, bemindful.com