Taking A Stand Against Toxins

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Cosmic Sage

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Location: Fernandina Beach , FL. U.S.A

PostPosted: Mon Apr 05, 2010 8:31 pm    Post subject: Taking A Stand Against Toxins Reply with quote


Toxic exposure is not just about air pollution anymore. No matter where you live on the planet today, there are dangerous contaminants just about everywhere: in your food and water, in your household cleaners and personal care products, even in your children's toys, as evidenced by the latest wave of child illness brought on by lead-tainted playthings.

In the most recent report dated June 2006, The World Health Organization attributed nearly one quarter of global disease to exposure to environmental toxins, a number that continues to rise as an additional 1,000 new chemicals are introduced into the environment every year. If allowed to enter the body and take up residence in its cells and tissue- even for relatively short period of time- these toxins can lead to poor health and chronic disease. But while we may not be able to stem the onslaught of dangerous chemicals being used today, we can take steps to reduce their accumulative risk to our overall well being.


Staying healthy in an ever more toxic world begins with understanding not only how toxins effect our external environment, but how they affect out internal environment as well. For years scientists have been measuring the amount of industrial pollutants in the air, water and soil samples to gauge their effect on global ecology, but only more recently have they discovered a way to measure the level of toxins inside the human body. The process, called biomonitoring, is currently being used by a number of organizations in order to map the effects of toxicity worldwide. Nearly a decade ago non-profit research giants Environmental Working Group And Commonweal began a collaborative study called the Human Toxome Project (www.bodyburden.org), which utilizes biomonitoring to measure the level of harmful contaminants present in the human bod, otherwise known as "bodyburden". So far samples of blood,breast milk,umbilical cord blood and other tissues have been analyzed from 75 participants ranging in age from developing embryos to elderly adults, and each one has tested positive for 455 out of 528 dangerous chemicals, including pesticides and heavy metals.

Of note however, was the substantial number of toxic substances detected in places many people may not expect: everyday products such as shampoo,conditioner,lotion,hand soap,laundry detergent,and even cosmetics. These hidden toxins have been slowly but steadly making their way into our lives and bodies for decades, and only recently have we begun to take notice.


From scrubbing bubbles to shaving cream, many of todays most hazardous chemicals can be found right beneath the kitchen sink or bathroom vanity. These include cleaning agents and personal care products made with sythetic chemicals that are used as preservatives,foaming agents,softners,and thickeners. Artificial colors and fragrances also contain dangerous toxins. Among the most widely used preservatives are parabens (methyl-,propyl-,butyl-,and ethylparaben), which have been linked to an increased risk in breast cancer among women. Commonly used in commercial deodorants (particularly antiperspirants) parabens may acclelerate tumor growth, and research has shown that a woman is eight times more likely to develop breast cancer in the area of the breast closest to underarm than in any other part of the breast.

Also used as preservatives in many cosmetics,skin care products,shampoos and conditioners, diazolidinyl urea and imidazolidinyl urea both release formaldehyde, which has been identified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as a known carcinogen (cancer causing agent). Added to many shampoos and skin care products as thickeners, the chemical compounds diethanolaminec(DEA) and triethanolamine (TEA) have been shown to cause skin and eye irritation. Likewise, sodium lauryl/laureth sulfate- often derived from petroleum- may cause eye irritation,scalp and skin rashes, and other allergic reactions.

Softening agents such as petrolatum (or petroleum jelly), propylene glycol and stearalkonium chloride are commonly used in lotions,hair conditioners and cosmetics, but research indicates that they may actually interfere with the body's natural moisturizing mechanism and exacerbate dryness and skin irritation.

Finally, synthetic colors (including synthetic hair dyes) should be avoided entirely, as they may increase the risk of developing cancer. It is best also to avoid synthetic fragrances, as they have been shown to cause headaches,dizziness,skin irritation,violent coughing,vomiting and other issues.Because cosmetic ingredients don't fall under the jurisdiction of the EPA or the Food and Drug Administration, many such products sold in the United States today contain known toxins that over time can cause poor health and disease. Equally concerning is the fact that although cosmetic manufacturers are now required to disclose certain so-called "dangerous" ingredients to the State Department of Health and Human Services, they are not required to remove those ingredients. (For a list of companies that have pledged to not use harmful chemicals, visit www.safecosmetics.org).


While avoiding toxins altogether is simply not an option, adopting a detox-friendly lifestyle can be your first step toward reducing your overall exposure to harmful contaminents and thus enjoying the vibrant health and energy you deserve. And an excellent way to begin, believe it or not, is by following a high fiber diet. Fiber-rich foods such as fruits,vegetables,whole grains,legumes,nuts,and seeds perform a dual function that is vital to helping eliminate toxins from the body. First, they add bulk to the stool, which helps to absorb toxins in the digestive tract. Second, they help to sweep those toxins from the intestinal walls and out of the body through regular, healthy bowel movements. If there is not enough fiber to absorb the toxins that build up in the body due to everyday exposure, those will be recirculated back to the body's primary detoxification organ: the liver. There they can accumulate in the digestive fluid knoown as bile, eventually overwhelming the liver and contributing to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease(NAFLD), which can then contribute to a host of other health problems.

Fiber is also a prebiotic, meaning that it helps nourish the benificial bacteria in the intestines called probiotics. A healthy intestinal tract should maintain a balance of approximately 80 percent good or neutral bacteria to 20 percent harmful bacteria. Several factors such as illness and antibiotic use can upset that balance, and when that happens, the digestive process slows down. This allows food to sit and ferment in the intestines, leading to a buildup of harmful toxins.

For this reason, a daily probiotic supplement is often recommended to mantain a healthy balance of gut bacteria and thus support optimum digestive function.Herbal intestinal cleansing is also an excellent way to jumpstart the body's natural detoxification process and provide needed support to the organs and and organ systems responsible for eliminating toxins and waste from the body.A variety of natural cleansing formulas are available today and can last anywhere from one week to 30 days, depending on the individuals needs and lifestyle. First-time cleansers may appreciate a milder, whole-herb formula that includes a gentle colon cleanse, while seasoned cleansers may wish to use a product with deeper cleansiing herbal extracts.


In today's world there's no denying that the more we know, the better off we are. Only by becoming aware of the true danger of toxins and taking steps to reducing our toxic exposure can we really begin to take back control of our bodies and our health. It may seem like a daunting task, but the first step is often as simple as knowing the facts. From there, we can begin to make changes that not only help our own generation, but may help to preserve the health of generations to come.






To our health and wellness.
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PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 8:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

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