Three Reasons To Read Ingredient Labels
© 2013 Express10
The main reason to read ingredient labels is to understand what is actually in the product you are purchasing. This is particularly important for foods and grooming items as they will either be ingested or applied to the skin but also for items such as air fresheners and household cleaners that you and your family will likely be breathing in. Did you know that a variety of studies show that chemicals build up in babies' urine, but not all of these chemicals are expelled from their little bodies. Even if the child is expelling a portion of the chemicals, there is likely to be a buildup within their body from a very young age. The same applies to adults.
A variety of toxins are also stored in our fat which should be a concern no matter if we have direct or indirect contact with a toxin. When we lose fat, the toxins are distributed to other areas. Quick loss of fat means more toxins released in a shorter amount of time. As adults, we continue to accumulate toxins from a variety of sources burdening our immune systems particularly if we are not eating well, getting enough rest, limiting stress, and exercising. I am not trying to make you paranoid just more aware of what you are putting into or on your body or bringing into your home. There is need for some level of concern, there is no way that anyone can avoid all toxins and some do not pose a problem below certain levels.
The Second Reason To Read The List Of Ingredients
The second reason to read ingredient labels is that you will be able to reject products that don't meet your standards. Products that contain excessive amounts of sugar, preservatives, fat, and chemicals are increasingly being rejected by consumers due to their ill effects on our waistlines and overall health. But, you should also know that many sneaky manufacturers are increasingly using vague terms, catch all phrases, and other tactics to move their product and keep consumers in the dark. There are instances where the common name of an ingredient has been changed to another "less tainted" name to fly under the radar of consumers.
Some manufacturers also refuse to list every ingredient that they use, and will often use the excuse of there being a lack of space on the container. Even in the instances where this is the case, these same manufacturers refuse to provide literature or an online list of their ingredients. This behavior begs the question, what are they trying to hide from the consumer? Still, there are some manufacturers who don't list anything at all. If the information cannot be easily obtained, try looking up the product on the Environmental Working Group's website and you may find out what is in the item.
The Third Reason To Read The List Of Ingredients
The third reason to read ingredient labels is so you may figure out how the item will fit into your diet, medication, or other regimen. Some ingredients don't combine well with others when preparing meals. Even if it is not a grooming or skincare item you may be allergic. You also need to have instructions on proper use if it is an item that could be used in a harmful manner. Products such as household cleaners can linger in your lungs and it is very important to understand how to properly use them, ventilate the room, and know exactly what ingredients are in the cleaners.
There are non-toxic household cleaners available often at a somewhat higher price or you can make your own non-toxic cleansers using ingredients such as baking soda, white vinegar, or hydrogen peroxide. In addition, there can also be changes to the product at any time that you may not otherwise learn of if you do not read the label. Some of these ingredient changes can affect your health. A good example of this are the recently changed warnings on painkillers that can be purchased over the counter. For you and your family's health and safety, it should become a habit to read the labels even if you've purchased the item before.
If you are concerned about the levels of toxins in your home, food, or products that you use, make an effort to inform yourself about the foods and products you use. Get proper nutrition, exercise, and rest in addition to weaning yourself off of using products that cause concern. While you might still get some exposure to toxins or allergens elsewhere, at least when you get home you are not adding to the problem.
© 2012 Express10
Environmental Working Group - Find Out What's In Your Item
- EWG Home | Environmental Working Group
Environmental Working Group (EWG) works to protect kids from toxic chemicals in our food, water, air and the products we use every day. We use research to help create federal policies that protect our children, our health, and our natural resources.
American Cancer Society
This page provides lists of substances and exposures that are known or suspected to cause cancer. To help put these lists into context, some related information is included on how different agencies and groups test and classify possible carcinogens.
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