There’s so much we don’t know about sweeteners, but the Association does have the accumulated experience of many thousands of families. Combining experience with what we do know, here’s a suggested guideline for choosing sweeteners:
There are many simple and inexpensive alternatives to avoid toxic chemicals in household cleaners. Try the following recipes:
Use a 50/50 solution of white vinegar and water. The first time you wash windows using this solution, add a couple of drops of dish soap to get rid of the film left by earlier chemical cleaners.
Use white vinegar or baking soda to clean toilets, sinks, floors and other surfaces.
Mix equal parts laundry borax and washing soda (sodium carbonate). Borax is available at most grocery stores. Borax should not be swallowed.
In general, around the home you can use:
Removes grease, prevents mould formation, cleans windows and floors.
Disinfects and scours.
SODIUM BICARBONATE (Baking Soda)
Scours, cleanses, deodorizes, removes spots, softens fabric and unclogs drains (mixed with vinegar).
STORE BOUGHT PRODUCTS
Biodegradable and environmentally friendly. Look for a certification logo.
For more non-toxic alternatives and further reading on this topic please take a look at:
Guide to Less Toxic Products: http://www.lesstoxicguide.ca
Why throw away unwanted items in the home instead of using a few recycling ideas? Society no longer tolerates waste, even if waste and want abound in equal measure. The environmentally-friendly, socially responsible way to clear clutter from the home is to make sure that it is used again wherever possible. Listed below are some of the most common types of household items that can be sold, recycled or even ‘upcycled’.
Throwing away old books is a sin like no other. Websites such as eBay and Amazon Marketplace provide people with an opportunity to sell old books online, making a small return on books that would otherwise have collected dust for years before being dumped in the bin.
Rare or unusual books, or any work of fiction or non-fiction that appeals to collectors, should be sold for more cash, perhaps through a specialist dealer. If old books are not likely to generate enough cash to justify selling them, libraries and schools might be happy to take them for free.
There are more than one recycling ideas for old furniture. An old dining room chair might have acquired a wobbly leg over the years or perhaps the springs of a sofa have had enough of entertaining coach potatoes every night. Whatever the reason, old furniture at some point or another becomes destined for the tip.
Households can avoid throwing away unwanted furniture by recycling items through organizations, such as the Furniture Re-use Network (FRN), Goodwill or local shelters. FRN claims to divert 90,000 tonnes of waste from landfill whilst helping some 700,000 low-income families.
FRN also estimates that around 30 per cent of the 10 million or so items of furniture thrown out by Britons each year can be repaired and reused. Antique furniture can also be sold for profit whilst old cabinets, shelves and tables can be upcycled to produce new, more usable furniture.
Games, Music and Movies
Among recycling ideas that do not always occur to people who want to remove clutter from their homes is that it is possible and perfectly acceptable to sell DVD’s online along with old games and music CDs. The market for used CDs and DVDs is surprisingly large, so it is certainly not inconceivable to think that a person with a dozen or so rare or highly sought after albums could pocket a tidy sum by auctioning CDs on eBay. If the hassle of listing items and dealing with bidders seems too much for sellers, direct services such as Music Magpie can be used to make a little extra cash from old games, music and films.
Shoes and Clothing
A favourite pair of jeans can only last so long. Old shoes can only survive so many steps. Coats and jackets change with each season. Whilst wearing items of clothing within a thread of their life may be common practice again due to worsening economic conditions, many people choose to throw out old clothes before they become heavily worn. There is no need to do this, however, as plenty of charities will gratefully receive donations of clothing, not least Oxfam,Â charitybags.org.ukÂ and the Red Cross.
Baby clothes and toys become keepsakes for parents as toddlers grow up, but not all items of baby gear need to be kept, especially not safety gates, cots, prams, pushchairs and car seats. Donating second-hand baby gear to charity is just one of the recycling ideas that can help thousands of parents who are struggling to cope in the current economic climate. Parents can donate old baby equipment to the Red Cross, Barnardos and other such charities.
Powerful antimicrobial chemicals (also known as disinfectants) are increasingly found in household cleaners, from laundry detergent to kitchen cleaners to handy wipes. Yet research has shown that some of the most common antimicrobial chemicals used in cleaners could have serious health consequences. Exposure to these chemicals has been linked to potential health impacts from simple irritation of the skin, eyes, and respiratory systems to hormone imbalance, immune system impacts, asthma, and potential reduced fertility. The overuse of disinfectant chemicals also contributes to the growing problem of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, more commonly known as “superbugs.”
The truth is that in most households, the need for routine disinfection is rare. Research has demonstrated that less toxic ingredients, such as vinegar and borax, have antibacterial properties that may be used in place of harsh chemicals. And there are other steps that can be taken to prevent the need for disinfecting in the first place.
Common Antimicrobial Chemicals Found in Household Disinfectants
Chlorine bleach is commonly used to treat drinking water, sanitize swimming pools and to whiten laundry, and is a strong eye, skin, and respiratory irritant. Mixing chlorine bleach with other cleaners like ammonia can release dangerous chlorine gas. Exposure to chlorine gas can cause coughing, shortness of breath, chest pain, nausea, or other symptoms.
Ammonia is often included in glass cleaners and other hard-surface cleaners, and can be irritating to the skin, eyes, throat, and lungs. Ammonia can burn your skin, and can damage your eyes (including blindness) upon contact.
Triclosan and Triclocarban are commonly added to household cleaning products such as hand soap and dish soap as well as a broad range of other products from toothpaste to socks. These chemicals are persistent in the environment, and are linked to hormone imbalance, and potential increased risk of breast cancer.
Ammonium quaternary compounds (“quats”) are found in household cleaning products like disinfectant sprays and toilet cleaners, and some have been identified as a known inducer of occupational asthma. Certain quats have also been linked to decreased fertility and birth defects in mice.
Nano-silver can be incorporated into textiles, plastics, soaps, packaging, and other materials, giving each the natural antibacterial property of silver metal. Nano-silver particles can penetrate deep into your body and have been shown to be toxic to the liver and brain.
Spread the word
Make sure that your friends and family know about the potential health hazards of overusing disinfectants. If you employ a cleaning company or an independent house cleaner, ask them to reduce their use of antimicrobial products in favor of everyday cleaning products.
Do you use Plax on a regular basis? I noticed the other day that a large supermarket chain was selling these for $1 a bottle in the sale item and also giving you the option to buy in bulk… why are they trying to get rid of this so badly?
Let me tell you why…
Plax, for those of you that don’t know is an oral hygiene and mouthwash.
Research has now shown that it can cause cataracts, flaking of the skin, corrodes and impairs hair growth.
It effectively enters and maintains residual levels in the heart, liver, lungs and brain from skin contact. Furthermore it is routinely used in clinical studies to deliberately irritate the skin so the effects of other substances can be tested!
This is what we are putting into our bodies every day? Please take my advice and stop it. There are many other natural and organic mouthwashes on the market so please choose one of them next time.