The COVID-19 pandemic continues to find many of us working from home, limiting our outings and doing our best to keep our loved ones’ health top of mind. We’re also taking in a lot of news and information and trying to be safe and healthy personally, at home, and especially when venturing into public spaces.
Our new norm over the past four months has evolved to pumping hand sanitizers frequently, slipping our masks on and off as we go about our day, sanitizing surfaces, and stepping into public spaces with new processes, procedures and levels of protection. The mantra is: we will combat this virus!
The widespread use of bleach and sanitizers like Lysol and Clorox are being used at alarming and increasing levels in businesses. In homes, people are using these chemicals to clean everything, believing it’s the only way to destroy the virus. The demand for hand sanitizers peaked so quickly we experienced shortages, and recently we’ve discovered that some hand sanitizers on the market are fatally toxic (Jun 29, 2020 report). We as a society are definitely disinfecting more. But at what cost?
A clean, disinfected environment shouldn’t cost us our health. As Empowering All Wellness we want to share proven-effective non-toxic alternatives that you can order online. Using safer products in our home environments and for our personal use (like hand sanitizer) can make a huge impact on your personal health. And shifting our consumer dollars to safer products sends the message that the public does not want toxic products in our homes or businesses.
The Non-toxic Way to Sanitize in Our Home Environment
A recent report by the CDC described a sharp increase in calls to poison centers related to exposures to cleaners and disinfectants since the onset of Covid-19. It makes sense as we are cleaning more frequently and more often than ever before in the light of this pandemic.
In fact, nearly 40% of Americans tried using bleach to wash food products or disinfectant products to bare skin and intentionally inhaled or ingested these products. The knowledge gaps in the safe use of cleaners and disinfectants among individuals is alarming.
Luckily, as an informed consumer of our favorite shopping club, you don’t have to stress about calls to poison control because you’ll know the products you are using in your home are safe as well as effective. When you know better, you choose better.
Growing up, it was normal to use bleach to clean around the houseand to clean our clothes. Advertisements drilled into us that whiter whites means cleaner clothes. Little did I know the adverse health effects that bleach can cause to humans until my mother’s diagnosis with cancer. I quickly learned about the link between environmental cleaning product toxins and cancer. In fact, if you haven’t yet checked out the lung study on national brand cleaners, it’s eye opening. The study found that toxic chemicals in national brand home cleaners are as damaging to lung capacity as smoking a pack of cigarettes a day for 20 years. Yes, you read that right. Now, read that again. Although it is undeniable that bleach does its work, we cannot cover our eyes and deny that it can be harmful to one’s health.
According to the U.S. (EPA) many household products found under the kitchen sink are considered pesticides. Unfortunately, we often don’t realize that we are exposing our family members when using these pesticides. Mixing bleach with other products may cause even more serious health problems especially when mixed with ammonia, vinegar, or any other acid type cleaning material. Bleach can be toxic to every living being and our environment.
We suggest alternative cleaning products free of bleach, toxins and other harmful ingredients. Just as effective, but safe and made with ingredients from nature. Sol-U-Guard Botanical Disinfectant is one such cleaner listed on the EPA’s list of disinfectants and cleaners that can be effectively used against SARS-CoV-2 or coronavirus when used as directed. And guess what? It’s made with natural ingredients such as thyme and citric acid, is much less than big box cleaning products you get off the store shelf, and it WORKS! Spray on surfaces and let sit for six minutes or more to be most effective.
Research suggests SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, can live on plastic and stainless steel surfaces for 72 hours, cardboard for 24 hours and copper for four hours. While the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said surface contamination doesn’t seem to be the primary way the virus spreads (instead, it’s through respiratory droplets expelled by a sick person), it can’t hurt to wipe down high-touch objects like door knobs, railings and faucets, in addition to regular household upkeep.
The Non-toxic Way to Sanitize for Our Personal Protection
Hand sanitizer in its gel, foam, or liquid form feels cool and tingly as you spread it all over your hands. It definitely succeeds in making us feel clean, protected, that we’re doing all we can to be safe. It seems like a simple alternative to washing your hands with soap and water. It’s quick, portable, and convenient, especially when you don’t have running water nearby. But buyer beware as triclosan and other harmful ingredients have been reported in several of them.
One common side effect of triclosan is hormonal problems. Triclosan may lead to hormonal disruptions and cause bacteria to adapt to its antimicrobial properties, which creates more antibiotic-resistant strains. Studies have also shown that triclosan can also harm the immune system, which protects your body against disease. Compromising the immune system can make people more susceptible to allergies, Covid-19 and more vulnerable to other toxic chemicals. And understand this: if your hand sanitizer is scented, then it’s likely loaded with toxic chemicals.
Companies aren’t required to disclose the ingredients that make up their secret scents, and therefore generally these products are made from dozens of chemicals. One particularly disruptive chemical is phthalates, which are endocrine disrupters that mimic hormones and could alter genital development. Given this information, it’s critical to think twice before you buy just any old hand sanitizer off of the shelf.
The good news is you can buy it at our online store. The Clear Defense brand of hand sanitizer and wipes is made in the USA, kills 99.9% of germs, is plant based, moisturizes with aloe vera, jojoba oil and glycerin, uses isopropyl alcohol (not drying ethanol), contains no methanol, no triclosan, no phthalates, and no ridiculously inflated pricing.
Also note that the FDA has issued a warning about several hand sanitizer products. Check it out this resource to find out if the sanitizer that is in your home, car or purse is safe!
As we navigate this new normal, consider the small steps you can take in the decisions you make and the products you choose to use in your household. Whatever you decide, focus on the things within your control that contribute to your health and well-being. We are here to provide tools, accountability and inspiration along the way. After all, this is a journey we are all on together.
Cheers to staying safe, sanitized and stocking up on your favorite wellness essentials!