Toxin Toxout: Getting Harmful Chemicals Out of Our Bodies and Our World by Bruce Lourie and Rick Smith is the follow up to their first book, Slow Death by Rubber Duck. I finished Toxin Toxout a few weeks ago, and kept not finding time to write up a review. So, it's not quite as fresh in my mind as I prefer. But, I think it was a worthwhile read, and so... I will dig up my notes, muster some courage, and give this a shot.
Slow Death touches on a bunch of ways that pollutants (toxins) get into our bodies. The authors said that Toxin Toxout was written as a response to all of the questions of "So, now what?" that they received from folks who read their first book. So,.. they decided to do some research, and find out the best ways to avoid being exposed to these toxins, as well as potential ways to rid ourselves of the ones already in our bodies.
The book starts with a synopsis of what was explained in Slow Death. They talk about phthalates and how they are in, well, just about everything. How parabens in our personal care products are causing cancer. And how eating vegan can decrease your rate of cancer by 30%. Holy smokes! Almost makes me want to stop eating cheese. Almost.
Th remainder of the book was focused on way to prevent and rid our body of toxins. Some of these were accompanied by anecdotes, some were researched by speaking with professionals, some was based on personal research that the authors tried. And, as in their first book, their writing style is humorous and keeps the reader engaged and entertained (while still being very informative).
So, in short, here are their 10 take-home points. Very summarized:
- Choose your personal care products wisely. There are lots of (mostly untested) chemicals in our shampoos, lotions, deoderants, etc. Most of them are there to make the product (and us) smell nice, but they are causing cancer and a whole host of other problems while doing so. Smelling good is not worth that high price. So, simplify.... switch to more basic, more natural products with less ingredients. Choose products without fragrance, without triclosan, without parabens, without phthalates. Read labels. Research your products. Choose ones that are the least harmful. Use less products in general. And remember that not all products labeled as natural are safe!
- Eat organic. Yes, you all already know this. Organic foods have less pesticides residues on them, which is better for us. But did you know that more carbon is released into the atmosphere from conventional farming than from importing organically grown foods from far away? Crazy, right? I am one to always try and choose local, and still will, but I am now feeling the power of organic. It can be pricey, so do what you can.
- Drink tap water, and lots of it. Water helps flush toxins out of your system. And bottled water is the pits, so drink it from your tap.
- In your home, choose safer products. Chemicals in your furniture, and well, basically everything you buy and bring home, off-gas into your house and then you breathe it in. Choose natural products. Avoid anything with vinyl (ewww). Looks for products without flame retardants (such as PBDE)-- ikea makes furniture without these nasty chemicals. Look for furniture without formaldehyde. Choose paint with low VOCs. Open the windows in your home and let air circulate every day... free the toxins! Clean and dust often as flame retardants and other particles stick to dust and then you breathe them in. But don't dust with nasty chemicals, or you will just make the problem worse. Vinegar and baking soda are your friends.
- Eat more veggies and less meat. Remember what I said about vegans having a 30% decreased cancer rate?
- Sweat. Sweat releases toxins. Saunas, exercise, hot yoga (which I tried today for the first time). The wetter, the better.
- Exercise. See above. Plus you will decrease the amount of fat in your body which is where a lot of these toxins are stored. Plus exercise is just good for you and makes your brain feel happy too. And then you can eat more chocolate. ;)
- Chose a detox lifestyle. Rather than doing fad diets and cleanses all of the time, the authors suggest moving towards a lifestyle where you eat healthy, detoxing foods regularly. See number 5.
- Buy less and buy green. If all of these new things we bring into our home are poisoning us, why not just stop buying them. Let's buy less stuff in general and what we do buy, buy environmentally and health friendly. If you buy less stuff, then you can spend more money to buy high quality for what you do buy. And, I love buying used stuff. That way, it has already off-gassed somewhere else! (note-- this doesn't work for all toxins. Flame retardants, for example, are soaked into our furniture, and will still be in the foam for many, many years)
- Complain to the people in charge. Think this all sucks and is a huge pain? Write your representatives. Tell them we want to buy things that are not poisoning us. And work for change!
Pin It Now!