While lead paint is a leading source of lead for many children, lead in the solder connecting pipes, as well as in fixtures and sometimes the pipes themselves, can contribute to lead poisoning. Formula-fed infants get most of their lead exposure from water.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission is warning people to stop buying the following products if they're made with "organohalogen flame retardants" because they contribute to health problems: 1. durable infant or toddler products (other than car seats); 2. residential upholstered furniture; 3. mattresses and mattress pads; and 4. plastic electronic casings.

Cleaning to stay healthy

We clean our homes to remove dirt, germs, and even toxic chemicals. Really, we clean to stay healthy. So why would we want products that could harm our health?

Rice cereal has been promoted as the ideal first solid food for babies, but there's reason choose other options: rice is really effective at absorbing arsenic, and rice products like infant cereal have significantly higher levels of arsenic than other options like oatmeal, quinoa, and mixed grains.

If you've been to one of our trainings, you'll know that we recommend avoiding carpet for a few reasons, including the way the fibers trap harmful chemicals and allergens and release them as people move over them. Now, thanks to our colleagues at Healthy Building Network, now we understand how the carpet can be a source of environmental harm, all by itself.

Lead poses serious health threats to developing babies. Learn where lead can be found, and how to prevent exposure.

Phthalates (pronounced "THAL-ates") are used in plastics and personal care products. They can disrupt hormones. There are simple steps to take to avoid many of them.

Many waterproofting and stain resisting treatments and products are made with per- and polyfluorinated alkyl substances, PFAS chemicals, also known as perfluorinated compounds (PFCs), like PFOA and PFOS, now found in millions of American's drinking water. Learn where to find them and how to make safer choices.

The American Academy of Pediatrics and American Public Health Association's National Resource Center for Health and Safety in Child Care and Early Education (NRC) has revised 18 environmental health standards in their 3rd edition of Caring for our Children: National Health and Safety Performance Standards: Guidelines for Early Care and Education Programs. They now include best practices suggestions from EcoHealthy Child Care®'s 30 item checklist. 

Help families take action to make their homes healthier, too.

How to avoid harmful chemicals during the end-of-year holiday season.

  

Electronics use many hazardous materials and are not designed to be easily recycled. They are required to be flame resistant, leading manufacturers to treat their products with chemicals to meet this requirement. Electronics often also contain toxic metals like lead and mercury inside. These chemicals can poison our air and water, and make us sick. Products quickly become outdated and are replaced with newer models. Improper recycling and disposal of old products can expose people, water, and wildlife to lead, mercury, or toxic flame retardants.

  

Tip 9: Safer Plastics and Toys

Children’s products can contain harmful chemicals linked to difficulty learning, cancer, infertility and hormone problems. As one of the most common toy materials, plastic is convenient, lightweight, and durable, but it can pose environmental and health risks when it is made, used, and discarded, and uses up non-renewable resources.

Tip 10: Healthier Kitchens

Unlike food ingredients, products that we use every day can contain chemicals of concern that are not listed on the label! Materials used for food packaging or during preparation may contain harmful chemicals that can interact with our food or drinks under certain conditions. The good news is that there are simple steps that you can take to reduce exposure to these chemicals.

Choosing furnishings is important for more than just comfort, looks and cost – products like carpeting, upholstered furniture, and pressed wood can contain toxic chemicals that can linger, affecting indoor air quality long after the initial purchase. Since we spend 90% of our time indoors, identifying the healthiest possible interior furnishings before you buy can make a difference.

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