It's Halloween time! In the spirit of the spookiest month of the year, I thought we should talk about something scary. I frequently get asked this question: "What's the scariest toxin?" I guess this is people's way of acknowledging that toxins are bad but they can't eliminate every toxin from their lives at this very second. So which one should be top priority? While it varies from individual to individual, the scariest toxin can be summed up in two words: synthetic fragrance. Synthetic fragrances are mainly made up of petrochemicals. That means they are derived from petroleum. Yep, like the same stuff that we use to make gasoline. Can you imagine breathing in fumes of gasoline all day long and then rubbing that gunk all over your body?! It sounds absurd, but so many consumers are doing just this each and every day. So the real question, what can petrochemicals actually do to you? Here are some of the health issues that you could be experiencing from exposure to them:
- Reproductive issues, such as infertility
- Irregular, absent, or painful menstrual cycle
- Runny nose/postnasal drip
- Weight gain
- Dryness, redness of eyes
- Skin rash
Throughout my years of practicing as a homeopath, I saw the direct link between exposure to synthetic fragrances and these symptoms in my clients. Oftentimes, they would associate these symptoms with other causative factors like pollen, the flu, stress, genetics, etc. Yet the removal of synthetic fragrances from their environments would alleviate their symptoms.
The prominence of these chemicals is what makes them extra scary. They are hiding in such a wide variety of our consumer products. For starters, you can find them in most name brand household cleaners, air fresheners, room sprays, candles, scent diffusers, incense, perfumes and colognes, makeup, laundry detergent, dryer sheets, sunscreen, body lotion, body wash, shampoo, conditioner, shaving cream, dish washing liquid, hand soap, essential oils, potpourri... you name it! Just see how many times you can spot the word "fragrance" on the ingredient list of your household products. Now, all is not lost. While many MANY consumer products contain these health damaging chemicals, there are some high quality, health-conscious, eco-friendly manufacturers out there that are making products without a single synthetic ingredient. We have been on a mission to track down the crème de la crème that fall into this camp.
All of the products featured in our boxes here at Back to Basics are synthetic fragrance free. No petrochemicals over here! We know it can be difficult to find consumer products that are free of these toxic chemicals -- especially with the lack of regulations in labeling or mislabeling in the marketplace today! We're working away to bring you the best products made from the best ingredients. Every product we offer has been tested, checked, and double-checked so that we can safely say it is toxin-free. Phew!
Stay tuned for the next post, The Scariest Toxin: Part 2! We will dive into what to look for in safe, alternative products.