According to the Environmental Working Group, the average fragrance has 14 chemicals that are not featured on the label. Rather than listing out the specific chemicals, companies can simply include “fragrance” as an ingredient, thanks to an FDA loophole that makes it legal.
It’s tough to know exactly which chemicals are hidden in each formula, but any scented product likely includes phthalates. The petroleum-based chemical keeps all the elements in a perfume evenly distributed, but the troubling concern is that one in particular, diethyl phthalate, has been shown to disrupt certain hormones.
Other studies have linked phthalates to liver and breast cancer. It’s unclear how much is too much, but rubbing perfume onto skin daily allows these chemicals to be absorbed into the bloodstream. Other troubling chemicals include octoxynols and nonoxynols. These can also result in hormonal problems. In addition to perfumes, these chemicals can be found in facial cleansers, aftershave, astringents, hair color, and acne treatment.
The European Union plus several countries, including Canada and Japan, have banned phthalates, yet the chemical remains legal in the U.S.
For people who have become more watchful of what goes into what they eat, the good news is that an increasing amount of food manufacturers are offering organic options, making organic food one of the fastest-growing divisions of food production in the United States. The bad news is that all of those options can be uncertain, especially when accounting for food made without GMOs, or genetically modified organisms. Some people could be trying to eat an all-organic diet, and others may simply be trying to duck GMOs. Although foods may be labeled as USDA-certified organic or Non-GMO, consumers may not understand the difference. In some cases, there is an intersection between the USDA Organic and Non-GMO labels, but there are some key differences consumers should be aware of when trying to make the distinction between organic foods and foods made without GMOs.
Typically, foods with the USDA Organic label have been manufactured without the use of GMOs as well as other standards that certify that the food has been produced with at least 95% organic ingredients. Foods that have been labeled as Non-GMO, on the other hand, only need to meet the criteria that they contain less than 1% of GMO content. Foods qualified as Non-GMO may have been exposed to fertilizers or chemical pesticides, animals may have been subjected to antibiotics or hormones, and livestock may not have been fed using 100% organic feed. In brief, all USDA Organic certified foods are Non-GMO, but not all Non-GMO certified foods are organic.
The inflated collection and choices available at the grocery store today may be more confusing, but anyone who is aware about what goes into their favorite organic chocolate brands will need to know the difference between the labeling and what the labels mean. The following infographic helps outline the differences between USDA Organic and Non-GMO labels, so review it the next time you check the labels on your favorite foods.
Check out the beneficial infographic PacMoore has produced below:
Composting organic waste is one of the best things you can do for the environment.
What is compost, anyway?
Nicknamed “Black Gold” by many gardeners and farmers, compost is a soil-like substance made from decomposed organic materials, such as yard trimmings and food scraps. When used properly, beneficial microorganisms in your compost pile will break down the waste until it becomes an unrecognizable substance that is dark, fluffy and rich in nutrients. It can be used for potting plants, as a form of mulch, or as a “soil amendment” that increases the organic content of your soil.
The barrier to entry might seem high, but composting is as easy as you want to make it.
Not only does composting divert organic materials from landfills, it also creates a nutrient-rich material perfect for growing a wide variety of plants and crops. The barrier to entry might seem high, but composting is as easy as you want to make it. This guide will help you get started: Continue reading “Simple guide to Composting [Infographic]”→
“The effects of makeup on your health are more than just skin-deep. Your makeup bag harbors more horrors than you can shake a sharp stick at: everything from lead to asbestos and quite a few nasty things in between. Some of the ingredients moonlight as stabilizers for pesticides and industrial cleaners. Can we all agree that something that’s used to clean a factory floor probably shouldn’t be cleaning your delicate face?”