Day 3: Evict Toxins from Your Kitchen
You’ve heard of the toxic chemicals living in plastic containers, food packaging, and cleaning supplies, and (if you haven’t already) it’s time to purge. Every year, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) creates a list of the best and worst cleaning products on the market. We’ve put together a list of the top cleaning products to kick from your kitchen, and the stand-up suppliers to buy instead.
While you’re on the EWG’s website, check out their brand new app called “Food Scores.” It rates over 80,000 foods based on three criteria: nutritional value, ingredient concerns (like adulteration), and processing. “Food Scores” just might become your favorite grocery shopping sidekick — check it out!
#1: COUNTERTOP CLEANERS
Countertop cleaners often contain silicon compounds, preservatives, and surfactants that have been linked to developmental and reproductive damage, respiratory issues, and allergic reactions.
The worst offenders: Simple Green Stone Polish, Simple Green Stone Wipes, and Hope’s Premium Home Care Counter Top Polish
What to buy: Earth Friendly Products Countertop Cleaner and Zum Clean Granite & Countertop Cleaner
#2: OVEN CLEANERS
Aerosol oven cleaners often contain butane, a neurotoxin that can cause brain damage, and ethanolamine, which can cause skin irritation, allergic reactions, and respiratory problems.
The worst offenders: Amway Oven & Grill Cleaner, EASY-OFF Oven Cleaners, and WalMart Great Value Heavy Duty Oven Cleaner
What to buy: Out of the 12 products the EWG tested, 11 scored an F and only one scored a C, Aussan Natural Oven & BBQ Grill Cleaner. Or, you can make your own cleaner from a paste from baking soda and water and let it sit on oven surfaces before scrubbing off.
When degreasers dry, the toxic compound 2-butoxyethanol is released into the air, potentially causing neurological problems, reproductive issues, fatigue, anemia, nausea, and developmental problems.
The worst offenders: LA’s Totally Awesome Degreasers, EASY-OFF Professional Heavy Duty Cleaner-Degreaser, Lestoil Grease & Stain Heavy Duty Cleaner, and Simple Green Heavy-Duty Cleaner and Degreaser
What to buy: Whole Foods Market green MISSION Organic All-Purpose Spray Cleaner & Degreaser and Green Shield Organic All-Purpose Cleaner Degreaser
#4: PLASTIC CONTAINERS
Plastics often contain chemical additives like bisphenol-A (BPA) and phthalates, which have been linked to reproductive issues, brain damage, cancer, and changes in behavior.
The worst offenders: Avoid plastics marked with 3 or PVC. PVC, polyvinyl chloride, is commonly mixed with phthalates to make plastics more flexible and though these chemicals were banned in 2009, they may be present in plastics made before that year. Avoid polycarbonate containers marked with a 7 or PC, which may contain BPA. Do not microwave plastics, even if they claim to be microwave safe, as heat makes it easier for chemicals to break down and seep into your food.
What to buy: Store your food in glass containers like mason jars or Pyrex containers. Alternatively, plastics marked with a 1, 2, 4, or 5 do not contain BPA.
Non-stick cookware is coated with a synthetic polymer called polytetrafluoroetheylene (PTFE), known by its trademark name, Teflon. Teflon contains perfluorooctanoic acid, a perfluorinated chemical (PFC), which has been linked to developmental problems, hormone disruption, negative effects on the metabolism, and an increased risk of cancer. Within two to five minutes, toxic fumes can be released from cookware coated in Teflon and cause flu-like symptoms in humans and other animals.
The worst offenders: Non-stick Teflon cookware
What to buy: Cast iron cookware, enamel cookware, and stainless steel cookware are all completely safe and distribute heat evenly.
Tell Us About Your Progress!
Doesn’t purging feel good? With non-toxic kitchen staples, you can be sure that your healthy foods aren’t being contaminated by hidden chemicals. Thanks for taking today’s Step Toward Constant Health. Keep up the good work!