I’ve gotten to the point now, where I’m a complete toxiphobe. I question just about every single product. You couldn’t stop me from eating junk food, let alone read the ingredients label. Yellow Lake #5? Exactly what shade of yellow is that? And how many other Yellow Lakes are there? (Insert bad pee joke here)
And as I’ve taken the dive into parenthood, I realized that I didn’t care, because sadly, I was selfish, and really had no reason to care, but now I look at my son, and wonder just how much damage I’ve caused him, not only with BPA laden bottles, or phthalate riddled shampoos in his early life, but how much damage did I cause him as a result of my own actions? The chemical laden shampoos and body washes. The oh so girly but probably cancerous dusting powder. The polycarbonate water bottle that I sucked 80 some odd ounces of water out of on a daily basis? I try not to beat myself up. I really had no idea. And I know I’m not alone.
That’s why the EWG is working on passing the Kid-Safe Chemicals Act (KSCA)
The nation’s toxic chemical regulatory law, the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) is in drastic need of reform. Passed in 1976 and never amended since, TSCA is widely regarded as the weakest of all major environmental laws on the books today.
When passed, TSCA declared safe some 62,000 chemicals already on the market, even though there were little or no data to support this policy. Since that time another 20,000 chemicals have been put into commerce in the United States, also with little or no data to support their safety.
I spend my days (well, as much as a toddler allows) reading ingredient labels on various products and then cross referencing them with various sources in the hopes of not only keeping my own family safe, but other families safe too. The sheer amount of chemicals out there that are in your regular every day products is disturbing. And it’s easy to understand why. There are so many governmental loopholes that allow a lot of companies to get away with putting toxic chemicals into their products.
The human race is now polluted with hundreds of industrial chemicals with little or no understanding of the consequences. Babies are born pre-polluted with as many as 300 industrial chemicals in their bodies when they enter the world. Testing by Environmental Working Group has identified 455 chemicals in people, and again, no one has any idea if these exposures are safe.
We are at a tipping point, where the pollution in people is increasingly associated with a range of serious diseases and conditions from childhood cancer, to autism, ADHD, learning deficits, infertility, and birth defects. Yet even as our knowledge about the link between chemical exposure and human disease grows, the government has almost no authority to protect people from even the most hazardous chemicals on the market.
300 Industrial chemicals! Before they’re even born. It makes you feel as if you’re trying to fight an uphill battle. You eat right, exercise, and then you find out that companies you thought you trusted, get around the system somehow. Making you feel as if you’re overreacting, because the amount of a certain chemical in their product is “within safe acceptable levels.” How do they actually know if there aren’t enough studies being done? And how do they know that other products you’re using don’t contain “safe acceptable levels” in addition to the already “safe acceptable levels.” I’m trying not to be an alarmist, here. At the end of the day, I just want what’s best for my child. We all do, and we should all be afforded that right.
You can read more about the KSCA here. Let’s hope that they not only pass this act, but also pass a similar act for adults too.