Asthma on the Increase, Reasons Why

Are you sick and tired of being sick and tired?

Andrea HartleyBy Andrea Hartley

If local officials notified you that they were going to build a landfill next door to you, what would your reaction be? Would you be outraged? Would you object? According to Sloan Barnett, a regular contributor to NBC’s  Today show and author of the book, Green Goes With Everything, the landfill is a lot closer to you than next door.

“Most Americans, but especially children, have dozens of pesticides and other toxic compounds in their bodies, many of them linked to health threats,” she writes. “A source of many of these toxins? Common, everyday, run of the mill household consumer products.landfill2

Barnett’s own child, who suffered from asthma, was the inspiration for her research. She had spent her career as a consumer reporter, so she knew how to dive right in. She discovered that the United States is “in the midst of an asthma epidemic”. “There’s no polite way of saying this: your body is a landfill; a dumping ground for a mind-boggling array of toxic chemicals. So is mine, so is your child’s.”

One of every 13 school-age children in the United States has asthma. This is an increase of 160 percent from 1980. That’s about 9 million children, to say nothing of the number of adults who suffer from it.

What is the suspected cause of these stunning numbers? According to Barnett’s book, which was published last year, six well-designed epidemiological studies published in well respected journals have found one answer. There is a strong link between the use of certain cleaning products and asthma. She writes, “That stopped me cold. I may have been poisoning my own son.”

For example, Barnett lists the chemicals that are found in your fabric softener: “toluene, trimethylbenzene, styrene – which are neurotoxins according to the Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health; phenols, xylene, a-terpineol, (irritates mucous membranes and causes central nervous system damage); benzyl acetate, (eye and respiratory irritant); benzyl alcohol, (can cause headache, nausea, dizziness, drowsiness, respiratory irritation and a drop in blood pressure); camphor (on the EPA’s hazardous waste list); ethyl acetate, (eye and lung irritant); limonene, (irritant); linalool, (affects central nervous system); and pentane, (eye and skin irritant and that may cause headache, vomiting, dizziness, or loss of consciousness).”

Could this be the tip of the iceberg? Could the increase incidents of cancer, autism, Alzheimer’s, and many other diseases be attributed to our excessive use of toxic chemicals in our everyday life? A man’s home is his castle, according to the old adage; but according to the research, a man’s home has become a contributor toward his ill health.

In the book, Barnett tells how to make your own fabric softener. (An added advantage to this is you will save money). Add a half cup of baking soda to the wash cycle. To eliminate static cling, add quarter cup of white vinegar. To eliminate static cling in the dryer, dry natural-fiber clothes and synthetic fiber clothes separately.

Stains in fabric? Make an inexpensive, healthy alternative to spot removers.

2 tablespoons of cream of tartar
2 drops peppermint or lemon essential oil Water.

Combine to make paste, spread on stain, allow to dry before washing. (Source: Kayn Siegle-Maier.)

Barnett chose to change her lifestyle and go green. Many others who were sick and tired of being “sick and tired” have done the same.

As your wellness coach, I can encourage and guide you into healthier, more loving thought patterns that will increase your health and well-being. There are many ways that we will employ to accomplish this. Some are education, personalized meditation and thought affirmations, accountability, emotional support and my “Association Technique”. This technique will help you to develop love, peace and calm in your life.

If you are willing to dedicate yourself to your personalized wellness program, I would like to partner with you. I will give you a free one hour session, valued at $40 to help you find your wellness plan and create your vision.

Call me at  609-533-7966

Andrea Hartley is the publisher of Lehigh Valley Woman’s Journal, wellness coach, and  personal trainer with a specialty in mind body connection, certified by AAAI/ISMA.


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