Last month in the Natural Fertility 101 series, we covered a lot about helping our bodies naturally cleanse and detoxify. This month we’ll begin to focus a bit more on how to keep those toxins out to begin with.
When I sit and think about how differently I live my life compared to just 5 years ago, I really just have to laugh.
I was the poster child for conventional/modern life.
I thought nothing of the makeup I wore or the lotions I used, air quality was the last thing on my mind, and wasn’t everything organic? I mean….it had to start as an organic particle somewhere right? The one thing I did think about was the cleaners I used; they had to be super strong and full of chemicals! If they weren’t, then they just didn’t work at all.
I looked at people like me and laughed – literally laughed out loud. How in the world could people live like that?! Don’t they know how crazy they seem!? But sometimes I think God really has a sense of humor, because it seems that everything I was adamantly against, I now believe whole heartedly.
A co-worker came into work one day and announced that her father had cancer – she decided to do everything in her power to reduce her exposure to chemicals that contribute to the horrible disease and, intrigued, I watched in wonder. She began buying natural cleaners and remarked at how well they worked. As much as I didn’t want cancer I was amazed at how much money they could save me over a years time, and I bought some from her. Little did I know how much I was doing for the health of my family.
One of the scariest issues with conventional cleaners is this:
“Cleaning product companies are NOT required to list ingredients used, because they are considered trade secrets.”
So, not only are the chemicals toxic—most of the time you don’t even know which ones you’re using.
Some of the common hazards of cleaners include:
- Alkayl Phenoxy Polyethoxy Ethanols – Found in detergents and multiple types of cleaners. Researchers have found that even in small amounts, this chemical can activate estrogen receptors in cells, which they found stimulated the growth of breast cancer cells and feminized male fish.
- Kerosene – Found in all-purpose cleaners and degreasers, it can damage lung tissue and dissolve fatty tissue around nerve cells.
- Para dichlorobenzene – Found in deodorizers and mothballs, it is an endocrine (hormone) disrupter.
- Triclosan – Found in antibacterial products, it can amplify the response of our naturally occurring hormones, causing depression of estrogen and androgen production.
- Phthalates – used often as fragrance and is a common hormone disruptor.
- Glycol ethers (2-butoxyethanol) – common in all-purpose cleaners and window cleaners (Windex) and has been shown to impair fertility and harm fetal development in animal studies even causing implantation mortality (miscarriage) and impacted litter size. Men exposed on the job were more likely to have lowered sperm counts.
- Triethanolamine – found in disinfectants (Lysol) and shown to cause genetic damage.
The list of chemicals is of course longer than this, and many more have
been shown to increase risks for multiple health issues including some having a direct link to hormone disruption, infertility, and birth defects.
Changing your conventional cleaners to natural ones is an easy step. There are plenty of healthier options in the stores now and making them at home is not only super frugal, but effective as well. Over the next couple of weeks I’ll discuss the many options and what I’ve chosen to use in my home.
If you use natural or homemade cleaners, why did you make the switch?