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Pesticides in Food and the Home: Warnings and Alternatives

Friday, October 12, 2007 by: Stephanie Ann Whited
Tags: pesticides, health news, Natural News

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(NewsTarget) Pests in the home are a big problem for many. Standard treatments rely on poison in the home to kill the invaders which often return anyway, but the poison is not specially designed to only hurt certain types of living creatures, so it is hurting the people in the house as well, just to a slower and lesser degree. Safer alternatives are available.

A new certification was announced on September 26th that ensures smarter pesticides which are less dangerous and minimize the use of chemicals.

Green Shield certification ensures the usage of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) techniques described by the Environmental Protection Agency as employing “current, comprehensive information on the life cycles of pests and their interaction with the environment. This information, in combination with available pest control methods, is used to manage pest damage by the most economical means, and with the least possible hazard to people, property, and the environment.” The IPM Institute of North America created the certification with help from scientists, environmentalists, and pest control industry leaders.

IPM also includes practical and common sense to fight pests. House and building inspections look for structural and environmental problems that encourage pests such as poor sanitation and leaky plumbing, and simple steps such as installing door sweeps are taken to prevent invasion and ensure long term pest removal.

It is understandable to want a fast solution to a pest problem, but pesticides are extremely dangerous and have been linked to Parkinson’s disease and premature birth. The EPA actually has a list of legal pesticides which may be carcinogenic. Although these products are debilitating and lethal to humans, they are readily available, and as with other toxic items that can be found at nearly every store, it is up to the consumer to make an informed choice.

The pesticide problem is not limited to indoor pest management. Pesticides used in farming and public lawns are a huge threat to public health and the NRDC claims that the EPA is not doing enough to stop it. One pesticide, atrazine, is banned in Europe but is widely used in the United States even ending up in our drinking water!

Linda Greer, Ph.D., director of NRDC's public health program says “60 to 70 million pounds of atrazine are applied annually in the United States to fields, golf courses and lawns, and the EPA has found widespread atrazine contamination in U.S. waterways. The most recent data indicate that more than 1 million Americans drink from water supplies contaminated with atrazine at potentially harmful levels. The bottom line is that a pesticide that ought to have been banned by the EPA is in wide overuse, with as much as three-fourths of the quantity applied unnecessarily.”

People exposed to these pesticides can pass the chemicals to unborn children. When the EWG tested newborn infants for chemicals, they found an average of 200 chemicals (in a top range of 287) in the umbilical cord blood of 10 babies in the U.S. in 2004, including several pesticides, 14 of which have been banned for years.

Pesticides are toxic substances our bodies cannot always dispose of on their own. It is important to avoid them whenever possible, and if considering having children, it is a good idea to complete a full body cleanse to remove toxins.

About the author

Stephanie Whited is an independent researcher dedicated to spreading awareness about health news, proven alternative treatments, and unsafe mainstream products. She maintains her own blog at http://torememeber.wordpress.com, and her personal site can be found at http://stephaniewhited.com .

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