Commercials have a way of making toxic chemicals look good and healthy. If you've ever seen an advertisement with crisp white sheets blowing in the wind, birds singing and a beautiful woman tending to her garden, you know the impact.
Unfortunately, none of those toxic products are even close to healthy.
Lisa and Ron Beres are experts in the world of such products, and in this segment, they join Andrea and Lisa to share the top six dirtiest secrets lurking in your laundry. This is especially important because most of what you're laundering is sheets and clothing... to which your skin is exposed almost all of the day and night.
6 Dirtiest Secrets
1,4 Dioxane: This is a synthetic carcinogen included in just about every leading brand of detergent. The tricky part is that it is not required to be listed on the label because it's a byproduct of the manufacturing process. It has been linked to cancer, liver disease and other serious health conditions.
Petroleum Distillates: A respiratory irritant linked to cancer, lung damage, inflammation and asthma.
Phenols: Chemical substance linked to nervous system damage.
Optical Brighteners: These make the clothes seem brighter by using a blue pigment to "trick" the eye. They are extremely toxic.
Synthetic Fragrance: Manufacturers don't have to list the chemicals hiding behind the word "fragrance" and can even label a product "fragrance-free" even if it still can contains fragrance. They are harmful to eyes and lungs.
Nonylphenol Ethoxylates or NPEs: These help penetrate dirt and grime, but also contain hormone-disrupting elements.
All of these chemicals not only affect your health, but when they end up in the water table, they also affect plants and animals and thus the whole food chain.
How can you avoid using these toxic chemicals?
Try adding 1/4 cup of lemon juice to the rinse cycle instead of bleach for whiter whites.
Instead of synthetic fabric softener, add 1/4 cup of white vinegar to the rinse cycle to act as a natural fabric softener.
Dyer sheets are particularly toxic, so use wool dryer balls instead. They will soften your clothes and reduce the drying time. Plus, they are reusable.