Household Cleaners Linked To Breast Cancer In Women

Household cleaners linked to breast cancer in womenA study recently published in the magazine “Environmental Health” found a greater incidence of breast cancer among women who frequently used household cleaners.  Julia Brody, PhD, executive director of the Silent Spring Institute in Newton, Mass., who led the study, and her fellow researchers conducted telephone interviews with 787 women who had been diagnosed with breast cancer and 721 women who did not have breast cancer.  The women were asked about the frequency of their use of household cleaners.

The links between breast cancer and household cleaners was found to be the greatest among women who used combined cleaning products (many different products used together).  The risk of breast cancer was about twice as high for the women who used many different products compared to women who said they used the least.

“The use of air fresheners and products for mold and mildew control were associated with increased risk” according to Dr. Brody.

Several household products contain synthetic chemical ingredients linked to cancer or other health problems.  You can find a list of hazardous ingredients in household products here .

Indoor air pollution is one of the nation’s most pressing personal health concerns according to the EPA.  They found peak concentrations of 20 toxic compounds to be 200 – 500 times higher inside some houses than outside according to a study that tested 600 homes in 6 cities.  Some of these compounds can be found in household cleaning products.

What are some of the symptoms caused by chemicals in household products?  Indications include runny nose, skin rash, a scratchy throat, respiratory infections, itchy eyes, dizziness, fatigue, and headaches. 

So what’s a person supposed to do, stop cleaning the house? 

If you’re concerned about the household cleaners you’re using in your home there are several safeguards you can take:

  • Use health friendly alternatives that don’t contain toxic chemicals.
  • Read ingredient labels on household cleaners and don’t use cleaners that contain toxic chemicals.
  • Get rid of household cleaners you already have in your home that contain hazardous ingredients.
  • Use an air purifier instead of air fresheners that contain synthetic chemicals.

Because we have all accumulated a “toxic load” of health-endangering toxins from household cleaners and other sources you might also wish to consider a periodic detox to flush out toxins.

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