These days most of us are at least aware that organic foods are safer than processed foods. The concern about foods that are processed is that there are various chemicals being added which are not safe for human consumption. For instance the fresh fruits and vegetables that you buy at the grocery store are teeming with all sorts of pesticides and bacteria. You would never go buy a pesticide with the intention of eating it. Yet when you eat nonorganic fruits and vegetables right out of the produce department the result is the same although you aren’t intentionally poisoning yourself. For this reason organic fruits and vegetables are a better choice although some of them pick up various pesticides and bacteria from polluted soil. Organic fruits and vegetables are safer because the risk of accidental poisoning from pesticides is greatly reduced (Organic fruits and vegetables should still be washed before consumption). Most people would avoid putting pesticides and other harmful chemicals in their bodies if they were aware of their existence.
Unfortunately eating contaminated food isn’t the only way harmful chemicals can enter your body.
Toxic chemicals can enter your body through everyday exposure to common things. You may inhale chemicals just by breathing air. Our water supply is no longer completely safe and has been shown to harbor many harmful things ranging from bacteria to harmful metals. The food you eat can become contaminated by soil which is contaminated with bacteria and pesticides. Household and personal care products can expose your body to harmful chemicals through your skin,
your respiratory system,
and your mouth.
Once these chemicals make it into your body, your organs have to work extra hard to try to filter them back out. Many harmful toxins are flushed out through your digestive system with the aid of the liver, kidneys, appendix (if you still have one), and gall bladder (if you still have one). The human body must work harder than ever to filter out harmful toxins because we are now bombarded with more toxins than ever before.
Because our bodies are having a much harder time of filtering out harmful toxins, we are experiencing all sorts of allergies, diseases, neurological disorders, and behavior problems as a result. We must begin to make some changes in our environment, the foods we eat, and the products we use if we want to claim overall better health. No one is immune from exposure to harmful chemicals, plasticisers, and metals. Human beings are suffering from something called Toxic Overload. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be fatal and there’s plenty to be done to reduce our toxic load.
Toxic Free by Debra Lynn Dadd is a wonderful, quick read book that skillfully explains the issue of toxins and what we can do about them.
Debra Lynn Dadd explains that toxins are poisons that our bodies collect and store. Toxins can be linked to every illness there is, according to Dadd. The author helps us identify toxins in our homes, our environments, and our own bodies. I was pleasantly surprised to learn that my own home is well on the way to being toxic free. However, I also identified several areas that can be improved in my own home to further limit exposure to toxins. For example, I had no idea that formaldehyde use was so wide spread. If you’ve ever had new carpet installed, bought furniture with scotch guard, or have applied scotch guard yourself to any item there is formaldehyde in your home. Formaldehyde is sprayed on the majority of the new clothes you see in stores (this gives that shiny new appearance and adds a bit of stiffness). Formaldehyde is on the sheets you sleep on (and can cause insomnia). Your skin can absorb all of that formaldehyde and store it in your body for years, slowly building the toxins in your body. To prevent this, choose natural fiber (no synthetics) clothing as much as possible and switch to cotton sheets (also a natural material). If you absolutely must wear synthetic clothing (it may be a required uniform for your job for instance) at least wash (with natural soaps) all new items before wearing them. You will instantly reduce your toxic exposure and you’ll sleep better too! Formaldehyde is also a primary ingredient in most lipsticks (sorry ladies!). You run the risk of absorbing or swallowing formaldehyde while wearing lipstick. You may also pass the formaldehyde off to other people by kissing while wearing lipstick. To prevent this, either do not wear lipstick or wear a lipstick made from natural ingredients. There are many, many more examples of simple steps in this book that we can take in order to be and live toxic free. These steps also lead to better health. Debra claims she has lived toxic free for over 30 years. Her health drastically improved as a result. I highly recommend this book for everyone. Debra has her own website with tons of information at http://www.debralynndadd.com/ .
In Toxic Free, Debra Dadd explains signal words for the products we use in and around our homes. Until I read this section, I didn’t actually realize there was such a big distinction between words like “caution” and “warning.” Basically Debra has put label signals into 4 categories:
- Highly toxic Signal Words: DANGER, POISON
- Moderately toxic Signal Word: WARNING
- Slightly toxic Signal Word: CAUTION
- Non Toxic Signal Word: not needed
With each category Debra lists how the toxin may be harmful. Symptoms could range from none to death depending upon the category and the amount of poisoning. The author says that she uses mostly nontoxic products but does use a few with the word CAUTION on them.
Because I can’t list all the wonderful information in Toxic Free in just one post, I was looking for somewhat of a summary of this issue and came across the You Tube presentation below. I am not promoting any one product, but this presentation happens to be sponsored by Nature’s Pearl Products. The actual presentation is about 42 minutes long, but there is a good 20-30 minutes of wonderful information before the products are promoted and I think this would be a 20-30 minutes well spent just to get familiar with the subject. The presenter talks about Toxic Overload, health problems created by toxins, and some of the actual poisons in everyday products–which you can then verify for yourselves with the products you personally use.
Our food is poisoning us. In Diet for a Dead Planet: How the Food Industry is Killing Us by Christopher D. Cook, the author discusses why it’s in the FDA’s best interest to promote poor eating habits. Human health is valued less by the FDA than the profit margin.
We have a whole economic system built around food which makes solving the problem of detoxifying our food quite complicated. Big business is shutting down family farms and essentially assuming control of our food supply “from farm gate to dinner plate.” Organic farmers have a very difficult time of getting their produce to grocery store shelves due to mind boggling FDA rules and regulations–all designed to protect big business. This problem is so vast that many compare FDA investigations on small businesses and farms to Mafia intimidation. Those souls brave enough to testify against the FDA often go to the extreme measures of testifying anonymously with hooded garments and using voice altering technology while others are still afraid to testify even in this manner. The FDA has deep pockets and is a force to be reckoned with. The FDA can and has destroyed many farming families through bullying and intimidation.
Diet for a Dead Planet is an older book but still has very interesting and very important information and history to share. Manufacturers will continue to make processed foods, foods loaded with toxins, and food-like products as long as we continue to buy them. One of the most effective ways we have to force change is to vote with our dollars and buy only solidly nutritious foods. Buy organic foods as much as possible or grow your own produce in your own garden or containers. If you can’t grow your own produce and your grocery store still has limited selections for organics, try buying local in area farmer’s markets or directly from local farms (this may be limited by FDA restrictions). If all else fails, you can now buy organic foods on the internet. However there has been some strong research to suggest that you should eat food from local sources whenever possible to take advantage of health benefits.
Fellow blogger Doctor Jonathan is very concerned about our lifestyle and food choices. I have followed Doctor Jonathan for awhile now and his blog, All About Healthy Choices, is well worth reading at https://allabouthealthychoices.wordpress.com/ . Please be sure to stop by this very informative blog to check it out and say hello. Because it’s best that Doctor Jonathan speaks for himself, we have collaborated on this post. (He has added several comments in red.) In addition to eating as many organic foods as possible, Doctor Jonathan suggests that food be eaten in the following order:
Along with the above, Doctor Jonathan recommends drinking 12-14 oz of water BEFORE AND AFTER your meals. This is important to expand the stomach to reduce food cravings while satisfying necessary water consumption. (For a sedentary person, a good formula to start with is 1/2 your body weight (calculated in pounds) consumed in ounces. EX. 200lb sedentary person should drink 100oz. of water daily.
My husband and I have been participating in the above plan and it is working! My husband, who struggles with weight, recently lost 5 lbs. That may not sound like a lot, but considering any weight loss has been hard for him this is amazing. We haven’t been trying this for all that long a period of time. Also, another miraculous thing that happened was that my husband (who claims to not like vegetables) actually asked me to buy more vegetables! Doctor Jonathan is better at explaining all of this, but he says that by eating this way that hormones in the body basically reset themselves and then you won’t really want to eat a lot of junk food.
There are many interesting movies which do a nice job of teaching us about toxins and our toxic food supply. I highly recommend that you watch these:
There are many, many more movies along these lines, but the 4 DVDs above will give you a broad understanding of how our environment and food is being affected.
Have you or anyone you know had problems with Toxic Overload? Do you know anyone who has a food related disease?