How to Shop for Non-Toxic Groceries
Living non-toxic is such a rewarding lifestyle choice. Not only do you reduce your chances of developing cancer, heart disease, and other diseases common to aging persons, you can also reduce the inflammation in a genetic disorder such as asthma, arthritis, and eczema. Not only do we need to be careful about what we ingest, but we also need to think about what we spray in our households and what we put on our skin. What we breathe in can be just as damaging as something we swallow. Not only do we need to worry about the products we rub on our skin like body wash and moisturizers, but also products we use to clean floors that we walk on with bare feet or counters that we touch with our hands. Our skin absorbs products just as if we had ingested the product.
I have many chronic illnesses, such as ulcerative colitis, asthma, arthritis, cystic acne, and eye issues. By being careful about what I eat and using non-toxic groceries, my symptoms have significantly lessened. I do not take medication any longer for most of my diseases.
The hard part is knowing what to buy and what not to buy.
Most Toxic Ingredients in Products
It can be very overwhelming, trying to find products that are natural and non-toxic. Most cleaning and products have so many products in their ingredient label that it is hard to know what is good and what is bad. Although it would be impossible to list all the harmful substances, here are some of the biggest culprits.
Abrasives - can scuff up sinks, tubs, and countertops that end up giving grooves for bacteria to hide.
Ammonia - burns the skin, eyes, throat, and lungs. It is also irritating and corrosive.
Chlorine bleach - is very toxic. It can be fatal if a child accidentally drinks it. It can permanently damage your skin. Breathing it in can damage your lungs. It is not effective for cleaning away dirt. It only turns it white.
D&C color - a synthetic material that can cause health issues.
Formaldehyde - is a prevalent allergen that affects the eyes, skin, etc. It also causes eyes, nose, and throat to burn.
Paraben - is found in many cancer cells, even though it cannot be created by the human body, which means it always comes from outside sources. It also disrupts normal hormone functioning.
Phosphates - can cause excessive algae growth, which disrupts the water concentration and can be harmful to fish and other aquatic creatures.
Phthalates - is connected to asthma and breast cancer.
Preservatives - are very toxic. Currently, there are no effective plant-based preservatives.
Propylene glycol - is a synthetic chemical that can cause health problems.
Quaternary Disinfectants - are not very effective against viruses. It's effectiveness decreases with hard water. It is also poisonous if ingested.
Sodium lauryl sulfate - is linked to cancer, neurotoxicity, skin irritation, and endocrine disruption.
Triclosan - can cause bacteria to become resistant to antibiotics.
Smarter Choices to Look for in Products
Botanical Extracts - is a safer way to add fragrance to a product.
Citric acid - is a better choice in cleaning products as opposed to bleach. It dissolves hard water, mineral deposits, and soap scum.
Essential oils - are a safer way to add fragrance to a product.
Glycolic Acid - safer choice, yet still dissolves soap scum and mineral deposits.
Melaleuca Oil - is tough on stains and boosts cleaning power and yet gentle.
Thyme Oil - has been proven to kill viruses.
Healthy Labels to Look For
Biodegradable - breaks down in the environment. Although you may need to research to make sure that a company does not use this as a selling tactic, making it sound healthier than it is.
Chlorine-free/Bleach alternative - because bleach can be irritating and corrosive. It also releases harmful gases. Studies have proven that excessive use of bleach has led to asthma and other lung diseases, which is also dangerous if accidentally mixed with vinegar and other substances.
EWG Verified - which stands for Environmental Working Group, which specializes in personal care products. They will only verify things that do not have any ingredient that is on their unacceptable lists, which are any ingredients that can cause health problems, ecotoxicity, and contamination concerns.
Non-Toxic - means that there are no hazardous ingredients. Unfortunately, the government does not regulate this classification, so there is no guarantee that it genuinely is toxic-free.
It is important to research not only the ingredients on a bottle but also the company that sells it. Fragrance oil from one company may be a very toxic chemical, while another may use a natural compound. Although it may be nearly impossible to truly live toxic-free, at least by being educated about products, you can reduce the toxic levels in your home and environment and improve you and your family's health.
I have chosen to shop as toxin-free as possible and am fortunate enough to have found a great non-toxic online store to shop. It helps reduce my migraines, asthma, and skin issues. I hope, as a result, my children will grow up with fewer inflammatory issues than I have.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.
© 2019 Angela Michelle Schultz