Monday, June 9, 2008

The Toxic Avenger

Are you ready to be enlightened? This next bit of knowledge is for everyone who cares to read it, but I told a friend that I'd put together some information for her about how we constantly expose ourselves to toxins. So, let's start with the word "toxic." When most people think of something that's toxic, they think that the substance has to melt off your lower jaw and dissolve most of your internal organs. The truth of the matter is that the toxins we expose ourselves to every day have a cumulative, perpetual toxic effect. Using hair spray isn't going to cause your lungs to turn inside out or make you grow insect hairs on your back, but it will give you cancer over time, if you don't burst into flames like Michael Jackson at a Pepsi shoot.

So let's begin with deodorant. Most deodorants are laced with toxic chemicals and heavy metals that are known to be bad for your health. Chief among these are aluminum compounds. Antiperspirants, toothpaste, dental amalgams, baby powder, cosmetics, and cigarette filters all contain aluminum. Aluminum concentrates in your bones and brain, and is a known contributing factor in osteoporosis, Alzheimer’s, and a host of other diseases. But at least you don't stink...maybe that's why the French live longer.

What next? How ‘bout hair dyes. Hair dyes contain at least two chemicals (para-phenylenediamine and tetrahydro-6-nitroquinoxaline) that have been proven to damage the body’s genetic material, cause cancer, contribute to arthritis, and harm unborn children. A USC study found that women who use hair dyes at least once a month were three times more likely to develop bladder cancer. One third of all women in the US over the age of 18 dye their hair. Hair dyes also contain lead; maybe that’s why women are crazy.

Most cosmetics aren’t good for you either. Ever get a rash or acne from makeup? Most women do. There are 125 known carcinogens in cosmetics today. That’s known carcinogens, not suspect carcinogens. Twenty ingredients cause adverse effects on the nervous system. Twenty more can cause birth defects. For every one million cosmetic products purchased, there are over 200 visits to the doctor for cosmetic-related illness. A one-year study by the Consumer Product Safety Commission found that in one year alone, cosmetic products resulted in 47,000 emergency room visits. Think of how many more cases went untreated or unreported. Ever been in a beauty salon…without a gas mask? Cripes! You can hardly breathe in those joints. People who work in those salons are exposed to massive amounts of those toxins, and because of that they are 50 times more likely to develop cancer than the rest of us. Read the labels. Most of the products tell you that they might give you cancer.

People forget that the skin is the largest organ of the human body. We get nutrients and excrete wastes through our skin. So, it follows that what you put on your skin ends up in your body. Antibacterial soaps and some skin care products are designed to kill bacteria. Guess what? Bacteria are made up of the same kind of cells that your body is. Would you shower in DDT? Don’t laugh, because they used to use DDT like that when it was considered “safe.” I won’t even get into the fact that more and more bacteria are becoming resistant to our antibacterial chemicals now, because of their widespread use in household products. I’ll probably die from an infected hangnail in 40 years because of this nonsense.

That toothpaste you’re using sucks, too. The active ingredient in toothpaste is sodium fluoride. Guess where fluoride comes from...(drum roll please)...It’s a waste byproduct of the aluminum and fertilizer industries. Yep, it’s industrial waste. Now let’s do a little multiple-choice quiz. If you were Dr. Evil and you were making millions of dollars a day processing aluminum and synthetic fertilizers that were unfortunately producing tons of waste that could kill people, what would you do:
a) Stop production at once, cancel your vacation to Rome, sell your fleet of Rolls Royces, pull your kid out of Yale and apologize to the citizens of your country for accidentally ruining their health and environment.
b) Bury the waste under your house in the cover of night.
c) Hire some “scientists” to claim on your behalf that fluoride is a beneficial compound and incorporate into toothpaste, dental treatments, and national water supplies.
Oooh, pick me! I know it! Without getting into too much chemistry, let’s just say that fluoride in your body acts as a calcium sequestration agent. It binds to calcium in your body. Your body needs calcium to build bones and move muscles (like your heart), among other things. A German research team made two studies by taking a random sample of all available data on tooth decay. Of the 48,000 individuals from 136 communities in 7 countries no correlation was found between cavities and fluoride concentration. Further studies have shown that not only does fluoride not improve dental health but it may cause decay. Fluoride actually dissolves your teeth; that’s what makes them whiter initially, but yellow when you’re older (or gone altogether, Dad). I won’t even get into the fact that fluoride is one of the worst carcinogens known to man. Oh, and the rest of what makes up your toothpaste is (drum roll please) sugar and saccharine. I thought Mom told me that sweets would give me cavities…lying bitch. Read the tube. It says that it’s poisonous and that you shouldn’t consume more than what you need to brush your teeth.

Again, remember that we’re talking about cumulative poisons here. Here’s another tidbit. One out of every two men and one out of every three women will develop some form of cancer in their lifetime. You might be wondering how all of the manufacturers got away with this kind of crap. Well, after WWII there was a huge manufacturing boom and a huge proliferation of modern marvels. Better living through chemistry, right? It’s only now, in our generation, that scientific analysis is catching up to the evil geniuses. We’re the first generation to use these products for our whole lives and throughout our development. It really is a grand experiment. We will be the ones to pay the price because the Boomers didn’t think to ask enough questions.

Don’t freak out and move to a hippie commune yet. Check out, there’s a lot of good information there. Read "Evil Genius in the Garden of Eden" by Vic Shayne. Try not to put anything on your body that you wouldn’t eat. If the label looks like an organic chemistry text, then it probably has some bad stuff in it. Avoid ingredients ending in "eth". Some other ingredients to avoid include: Urea, Paraben, Petrolatum, Propylene Glycol, PEG, PVP, Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, Stearalkonium Chloride, Synthetic Colors, Synthetic Fragrances, and Triethanolamine. And remember that any time you switch from one product to another there will be an adjustment period while your body flushes out the toxins. Also, try to pay attention to the companies you by from. Did you know that Bayer (the aspirin company) was originally the I. G. Farben Company? Know what they made? The Zyklon-B gas that was used in the Nazi death camps. Did you know that Phillip Morris (tobacco giant) owns Kraft, Pepperidge Farms, Miller, Nabisco, and a host of other large companies? You do now, but don’t get me started on food.

If you have any questions, or you’re just curious, drop me a line. If you want me to freak you out about food, just let me know. Feel free to forward this to anybody that wishes to eat from the tree of knowledge, even if they’re not that hungry.


Althegibb said...

I'll never wash again, said the hippy.

TJ said...

Will patchouli kill hippies? I hope so, because it makes them smell half-dead.

Cool blog Dan, very informative. Keep it up.