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Lead in Your Dishware?

Here's a simple swap on how to pick swoon-worthy plates without the toxins


If you're kitchen obsessed like me, you've probably poured over every IKEA, Pottery Barn, William Sonoma and Magnolia Home magazine scouring for the prettiest dishware to serve breakfast, lunch and dinner. Whether you're a food styling pro, or wouldn't mind eating off any type of plate, here's what you might not know. Depending on the style and manufacturer of dishware, there might be lead and cadmium hiding in the paint.


Lead and cadmium are primarily used in colored glazes to stabilize them (1). Lead and cadmium are toxic metals that cause negative health effects in children and adults. There's no safe limit for lead exposure and it can affect cognitive and behavioral development in children. Lead exposure isn't great for adults either! Lead exposure can cause weakness in the fingers, wrists, or ankles and chronic low dose lead exposure causes an increase in blood pressure (2). Chronic cadmium exposure (like eating off the same plates for years) can lead to kidney, bone and lung diseases (3). Here's what you should know!

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has strict regulations on the usage of lead and cadmium in paint glazes that are used in items that might come in contact with food. In order for dishware to be sold in America, the lead and cadmium levels in the dishes must be below a set standard. However, this does not mean that all products imported are always tested (a.k.a. for products not tested, we don't actually know if they're meeting FDA levels and they get sold on shelves anyway!) If you're buying dishware while on vacation abroad, you should also be aware that most countries do not have regulations as strict as the U.S. when it comes to lead and cadmium levels in dishware. In fact, the FDA has put together a list of manufacturers by country that produce dishware of concern.

Luckily, there's a pretty easy fix! The next time you're at the store browsing for new dishware, here's what you should do:

  • When purchasing dishware, find a set that is glazed in white or unglazed. Hey, minimalism is all the rage and that white background will make some Insta-worthy photos for sure!
  • If you're dying to have a little color on your plates, try and only purchase dishware made or sold in the US from a reputable brand. Again, these manufacturers must follow more stringent standards on paint glazes.
  • If you're interested in purchasing colored dishware when abroad, plan on buying decorative pieces, instead of ones that you may use as dishware. They may look beautiful, but most likely contain lead and cadmium in the glaze since there is less regulation in what can be used in glazes for dishware, so you definitely don't want them touching your food!
  • If you've got some colored dishes right now, here are some great tips that will allow you to keep using those dishes, but keep the lead intake to a minimum!

This simple swap might not change how awesome your dinners look, but it will definitely make a difference in you and your family's health!

References

  1. http://www.environment.gov.au/protection/chemicals-management/lead/lead-in-ceramic-crockery-pottery-making
  2. https://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/csem/csem.asp?csem=34&po;=10
  3. https://www.osha.gov/SLTC/cadmium/healtheffects.html
Roundups

10 Best Non-Toxic Sunscreens

For the beach and all your outdoor sweaty activities. Reef safe too!

We updated our sunscreen roundup for 2019 with the 10 best reviewed, non-toxic mineral sunscreens we could find. As always, we make sure that our picks are easy to find online and in stores.

Sunscreen in our minds is synonymous with summer and being outside! But there are so many choices, it's hard to know if what you're getting is something that actually works and that other people like. Not to mention that there are some questionable chemicals in sunscreens that are definitely horrible for coral reefs and might be endocrine disruptors that soak through your skin. So look for one of our top 10 picks for non-toxic sunscreens the next time your tube is empty. We have plenty of options for everyday wear, sweaty sports and beach days!

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Environmental Factors May Have a Bigger Impact on Fertility than You Think

Breaking Down the Science and Ways to Limit Harmful Exposures

Trying to get pregnant should be an exciting time of planning for the next stage of your life, not one full of doctors visits, constant testing, and worrying about body temperatures. But, if you and your partner are struggling with infertility, you are not alone. According to the CDC about 12% of women have impaired fecundity, which is another way of saying that they are having difficulty getting or staying pregnant (1) [there are no statistics on infertility in men, but there is science showing that overall sperm count is decreasing(14)]. And, the science is clear, environmental factors definitely impact reproductive health - for both men and women. Some of the biggest impacts come from air pollution, pesticides, and endocrine disrupting chemicals (2), which are in all sorts of products and affect the way hormones interact with your body.

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9 Stainless Steel & Glass Tumblers

For iced coffee, iced tea, and smoothies on the go

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Life

Easy Ways To Keep Your Car Smelling Fresh Without the Synthetic Scents

Cause Traditional Car Air Fresheners Are No Good For Your Health

Those little tree-shaped air fresheners dangling from a rear-view mirror or air vent clip-ons may feel festive, but most car air fresheners can be bad for your health. They seem so innocent, so how is that possible you might ask?

One of the biggest issues with these products is the mystery behind what goes into them. Believe it or not, It's actually hard to be 100% certain about what chemicals are in air fresheners. There's a ton of secrecy into what actually goes into a fragrance product because companies can claim their ingredients are trade secrets. We definitely can't say a product is safe if we don't even know what is used to make it.

However, we do know that most air fresheners are made up of a ton of synthetic fragrances. There are literally thousands of chemicals manufacturers can choose from when making a product with synthetic fragrance. And a lot of these chemicals are known to have negative impacts on our health. (1)

On top of that, fragrance in air fresheners usually contain both phthalates and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) (2). Although these chemicals can make scents powerful, they can also be allergens that cause coughing, headaches, and runny noses (2). Phthalates are also hormone disruptors and VOCs can be carcinogens. We definitely don't want to be constantly breathing in those chemicals, no matter how good they might smell!

The amount of space inside your car is also a reason we don't like traditional car air fresheners. A smaller space = more concentrated exposure, and since you probably have your windows closed 90% of the time, a car is one of the worst places to keep a strongly-scented product.

Luckily, there are easy, nontoxic ways to make your car smell fresh! You can keep a container filled with baking soda or a baking soda freezer pack hidden somewhere. Baking soda is a completely natural way to eliminate odors and a box is only a couple of dollars! Using scents from natural sources are also a great way to add a little freshness to your car. You can put a few drops of an essential oil onto a clothespin or another wooden item and leave it somewhere in your car (3). When the smell goes away, just replenish with a few more drops of oil! If you prefer something a little more contained, we also love putting satchels of lavender or rose petals around our car.

But perhaps the easiest way to get rid of a bad smell is to simply roll your windows down! Maybe rolling down the windows will help make your commute a little more relaxing too.

References:

  1. https://www.nrdc.org/media/2007/070919
  2. https://kellybroganmd.com/is-your-uber-air-freshener-making-you-sick/
  3. https://www.onegoodthingbyjillee.com/how-to-make-3-naturally-scented-air-fresheners-for-cars/
Roundups

12 Best Non-Toxic Diaper Creams

Our top recommendations for your baby's bottom that parents love

Updated for 2019!

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