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Cancer and Chemicals (new article from NY Times Kristof) and How to Avoid Them

12.10.09 Cancer and Chemicals (new article from NY Times Kristof) and How to Avoid Them

Check out Nicholas Kristof's op-ed column about cancer and chemicals. I am happy to see him addressing how chemicals are affecting our health, and with the health care reform bill in play, how this is an opportunity to take it on. 

Here's a quote from the post that was alarming (even though I knew generally this was true):

"It’s also well established that Western women are beginning puberty earlier, and going through menopause later. Dr. Maida Galvez, a pediatrician who runs Mount Sinai’s pediatric environmental health specialty unit, told the symposium that American girls in the year 1800 had their first period, on average, at about age 17. By 1900 that had dropped to 14. Now it is 12."

That last sentence stopped me in my tracks.  What else is really going on?  I'm glad he is asking the question, and researchers, lawmakers, and doctors are looking into how endocrine mimicking chemicals in our every day products could be causing early puberty and breast cancer.

The toxic cocktail our children are exposed to will be this generation's DDT or Asbestos.  The evidence, concern and health consequences are mounting.  When will the tipping point be?

In the meantime, you can take small actions to protect your family from some of the exposures Kristof discusses:

*ditch the non-stick pans, use cast iron or stainless steel

*use glass to store food

*drink from glass and stainless steel

*never microwave plastic

*vacuum often!

*buy electronics without bromated flame retardants (ask!)

*ditch the fleece sleepers with flame retardants (buy untreated, snug fitting sleepware for kids)

*buy natural toys made in the USA or Europe

These are just a few ideas.  There are lots more in the fabulous (and scary) book, The Body Toxic, by Nena Baker, and also on my blog, Non-Toxic Kids

 

image: by sea turtle on Flickr

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