January 5, 2009

Himalayan Salt Crystal Lamp Improves Indoor Air Quality

I love Himalayan salt, and I've always been curious about salt lamps. I think they are really beautiful and create a nice ambiance in a room, but I didn't know that they actually clean the air.

  • These lamps are made of natural crystal salt mined from underground salt mines in the foothills of the Himalayan Mountains
  • The beautiful orange-reddish Himalayan crystal salt is mounted on a wooden base
  • This crystal salt is hundreds of millions of years old and, as a result, has special properties and high mineral content
  • Heat from the bulb (in our lamps) or flame (in our candle holders) causes the salt to emit negative ions
  • These negative ions bond with the pollutants in the air (positive ions) and neutralize them
  • Also, the newly bonded ions become heavier and fall to the ground removing them from the air circulation
  • In addition, these negative ions combat electro-smog caused by electronic devices operating in the home
  • Symptoms from asthma, allergies, and other illnesses can also subside from the effects of these products
  • Concisely, these products cleanse the air naturally and are extremely beautiful

The salt lamp uses only a 15 watt light bulb, so it is energy efficient, or alternately you can use a candle. It is such a beautiful, natural light that creates a warm glow. I love my salt lamp!
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

December 17, 2008

Piggy Paint All Natural, No Odor Fingernail Polish

piggypaints.jpgPiggy Paint is a non-toxic, odorless, kid-friendly nail polish that is "natural as mud".
Mud is a mixture of water and dirt. Makes great mud pies. Piggy Paint is a mixture of water and other natural ingredients. Makes fancy nails. Piggies love 'em both. Piggy Paint is a non-toxic fingernail polish designed especially for your little girl. No smelly odors, no toxic chemicals, and no damage to your precious one's nails or the environment.
I tried Piggy Paints on my daughter's nails, and there really is no odor! Usually nail painting activities are banned from inside our home, but with Piggy Paint, no one noticed she was painting her nails. Piggy Paints do not contain any formaldehyde, toluene, phthalates, biphenyl A, ethyl acetate or acetone. Piggy Paints even makes non-toxic nail polish remover! According to the Grist:
And lest you think the FDA is keeping a close eye on your mani/pedi products, the truth is that the governmental agency doesn't test, review, or approve the ingredients -- and doesn't even require the companies making the products to conduct safety testing. In most cases, virtually any ingredient can be used.

The worst of these include toluene, a toxin that has been linked to birth defects; formaldehyde, a carcinogen and common indoor air pollutant; and dibutyl phthalate, or DBP, a plastic softener that has been much-maligned in the news of late for its role in a number of health problems including infertility, reproductive cancers, and disruptions in fetal development.

Best to play it safe and stick with Piggy Paint.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

December 10, 2008

The Story Behind CleanWell All-Natural Hand Sanitizer

cleanwell.jpg Cleanwell All-Natural Hand Sanitizer is an amazing product, and it is now available in four new scents: spearmint lime, orange vanilla, citrus herb, and lavender. I always keep a bottle of CleanWell in my purse for sanitizing my children's hands on the go, but I had never read the full story behind the product.

Conor was born with a rare, non-genetic form of Combined Severe Immune Deficiency, with only 10% of his immune system functioning. His parents soon discovered that all household disinfectants, antiseptic soaps, and cleansers contained toxic ingredients. Of particular concern is Triclosan, which is found in antibacterial soaps and has been linked to cancer. In order to protect Conor's weakened immune system, his parents developed CleanWell using thyme and oregano to fight germs.

CleanWell products are all natural and kill 99.99% of germs naturally with a combination of plant oils called "Ingenium", including MSRA, E.Coli, and Salmonella. It is also certified cruelty-free and biodegradable. I feel safe using CleanWell products in my home and classroom.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

December 5, 2008

BPA May Interfere with Chemotherapy

800px-Bisphenol_A.jpg The chemical Bisphenol-A (BPA) may interfere with chemotherapy treatment, as reported in Environmental Health Perspectives. This new study found that BPA, which is found in many hard plastics, soda/beer can linings, and tin cans, shields cancer cells from chemotherapy. "It's actually acting by protecting existing cancer cells from dying in response to anti-cancer drugs, making chemotherapy significantly less effective," said Nira Ben-Jonathan, a professor of cancer and cell biology. The study's authors conclude, "These data provide considerable support to the accumulating evidence that BPA is hazardous to human health."
 Via: New York Times
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

September 17, 2008

Improve your Indoor Air Quality with Therapure Hepa, Ion, UV Purifier

41xG7+aqcWL._SL500_AA280_.jpg It's been a summer full of smoke here in northern California, and we could not have remained in our home without Therapure air purifiers. We have purchased six of these air filters this summer for our home and the classrooms at the school where I teach. The Therapure air purifier is versatile, in that it is a HEPA filter, ionizer, and has a photocatalyst filter that removes volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from new paint and carpets, as well as kills germs. The filter never needs replacing, as it can be cleaned, and there are four speeds you can use on the Therapure. This filter purifies the air in rooms up to 16 x 17 feet, and its Triple Action Purification system maintains a CADR level of 180. I am so thankful these filters allowed my family to remain home during this summer of unhealthy smoke-filled air.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

August 11, 2008

Looking for the Safest Sunscreen? California Baby Sunblock

319SJ59D99L-1._SL500_AA250_.jpg Every time I put on sunscreen or apply it to my children's skin, I feel like I am protecting our long term health, but not all sunscreens are created equal. I am not referring to the safety implied by SPF protection, but the ingredients of some sunscreens cause serious safety concerns. Furthermore, there aren't any US sunscreen safety standards, despite 29 years of writing drafts by the FDA. Thank goodness we have the Environmental Working Group to sort out the safety of sunscreens!

At the top of EWG's list is California Baby's No Fragrance Sunblock Stick with a SPF of 30. This sunscreen is PABA-free, easy to use, and contains no chemicals. EWG gave it a ranking of 0 out of 10 for safety and sun hazards; you can't get a better score! EWG has ranked over a 1000 sunscreensCalifornia Baby's No Fragrance Sunblock Stick protects you from the sun's harmful rays without exposing your skin to harmful chemicals that are absorbed into your body.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

May 15, 2008

Is it Time to Take Fluoride Out of Our Water?

About 1700 professionals, including Arvid Carlsson, the 2000 Nobel Laureate for Physiology or Medicine, have signed a statement by the Fluoride Action Network asking Congress to sponsor hearings on the safety of fluoridation. Fluoride is most effective when used topically, as in toothpaste, and there evidence that systemic intake is harmful. According to the CDC, 32% of children have fluorosis from fluoridated drinking water, and the American Dental Association warns parents not to use fluoridated water when mixing infant formulas. Systemic fluoride has been linked to risk of bone fractures, decreased thyroid function, lowered IQ, arthritic-like conditions, dental fluorosis and, possibly, osteosarcoma.

You don't have to wait for Congress or your local community to agree to remove fluoride from your tap water. There are filters available that you can install to remove this chemical and other toxins. Fluoride filters are the best solution currently, especially since there is no guarantee that bottled water made from purified city water is fluoride-free.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

May 13, 2008

Flame Retardant PBDE Found in Falcon Eggs

peregrine falcon flying over San Francisco Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) are a common flame retardant used in electronics, furniture, clothing (including children's pajamas), etc. PBDEs widespread usage has caused the chemical to build up in human bodies and the environment. Previous studies have found the flame retardant present in mother's breastmilk, now it has reached high levels in peregrine falcon eggs in the San Francisco Bay Area.
The eggs of peregrine falcons living in California's big cities contain some of the highest levels ever found in wildlife of a flame retardant used in consumer products, a new study has found.
It's a good thing that a California law that bans certain types of PBDEs goes into effect this year.  You do have choices as a consumer for avoiding some PBDEs, such as the Aloe Dream Mate Pillow by Natura or organic kids' pajamas. PBDEs may become the DDT of our times, now that it is reaching the birds higher up in the food chain. We should all be concerned, as Americans have the highest level of PBDEs in their bodies than any other people in the world.

Via: Treehugger

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

May 12, 2008

Bestselling BPA-Free Water Bottles

b1f279edd7a0824851e18110.L.jpg BPA in plastics may become the lead in gasoline and paint of our times. In fact, US Senator Chuck Schumer (Democrat-New York) is proposing a legislative ban on the sale of children's products and food containers containing bisphenol A (BPA).We've been reviewing BPA-free products on Really Natural since we first heard BPA may not be safe. The following list was created from the BPA-free water bottles our readers have liked the best.
Bestselling BPA-Free Water Bottles
My favorite BPA-free water bottle is the Klean Kanteen Stainless Steel Water Bottle, even though it is made in China. The stainless steel construction means it does not require a liner, like the aluminum Sigg bottles, and it is not made of plastic. The most economical choice is the Camelbak BPA Free Better Bottle, if you aren't concerned about other potential toxins in plastics.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

May 5, 2008

BPA-Free Camelbak Plastic Water Bottle

Bisphenol-A (BPA) has been in the news a lot lately, as governments are finally admitting this hormone disruptor is bad for humans, particularly children. Senators Charles Schumer and Diane Feinstein have just introduced a bill to ban BPA in all children's products, and the US House of Representatives is investigating the FDA's claims that BPA is safe for human consumption. Canada declared BPA a "dangerous substance".

When I first learned about BPA, I immediately switched my family's water bottles to Klean Kanteens, including sippy cups. Now, Camelbak has created a BPA-Free version of their Better Water Bottle.  This plastic bottle is dishwasher safe (top shelf), lightweight, durable, BPA-free, pthalate-free, and made of a new Triton material.  It has a standard cap, so it will fit backpacking water filters that require this for attachment, like mine.  Now I really can toss the Nalgene bottles and go camping without lugging heavy stainless steel bottles around.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

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