Read Your Labels! What to Ingredients to Avoid

If most of your time shopping is spent reading labels, you're not alone. More and more moms are wising up and informing themselves about the beneficial and harmful effects ingredients in everyday products have on their families.

You do your homework. You read your labels. But do you know which ones you should be avoiding and why?

Pull out some of the things you already own at home: shampoo, sunscreen, toothpaste, hand soap... You've checked them before, but check them again. You might need to rethink your choices and find more healthy alternatives for you and your family.

Here are some of the worst offenders in ingredients, along with what they may be doing to you and your family:
  • Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) - skin irritant with mutagenic effects

  • Parabens - causes breast cancer

  • Propylene Glycol - alters skin structure for other chemicals

  • Phthalates (aka: fragrance) - disrupts hormones; decreases sperm mobility; genital abnormalities in baby boys; linked to asthma and allergies

  • Petrolatum (aka: mineral oil, Vaseline) - banned in Europe, linked to breast cancer

  • Cocomide DEA/Lauramid DEA - human immune system toxicant

  • Diazolidinyl Urea - human carcinogen and nasopharyngeal cancer

  • Butyl Acetate - skin, eye, and lung irritant

  • Butylated Hydroxytoluene - human immune system toxicant and neurotoxin

  • Ethyl Acetate - linked to cancer, developmental and reproductive deformities; skin, eyes, and lung irritant
This short list, borrowed from the Environmental Working Group, is just the tip of the iceberg. To learn more about all the dangerous chemicals found in our everyday products - and why we should be avoiding them - go to www.ewg.org today.

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