Friday, May 28, 2010

67 - Slow Death By Rubber Duck; Rick Smith and Bruce Lourie



Slow Death By Rubber Duck: The Secret Danger of Everyday Things

Toxic chemicals are everywhere, but just how harmful are some of the products many of us use on a daily basis?  Not sure you want to know??  You might want to skip this book and this review. The book is filled with interesting and easy to understand facts; it is addictive reading.

Rick Smith and Bruce Lourie, environmental activists from Canada, deliberately exposed themselves to some of the chemicals many of us use. For one week, they inhaled, absorbed or ingested a variety of products, and closely monitored their exposure levels using blood and urine analysis; the results made me gasp! Some chemicals showed heavy exposure after just 2 days.

The authors point out that ther are roughly 82,000 chemicals in use in the United States, and each year some 700 new ones are added to the mix. Of these, only 650 are monitored, and even more shocking only (5) have been banned! Even asbestos, a known cancer causing agent, is not banned. Many cancers have been linked to chemical exposure. In 2009 there were 1.5 million new cancer cases expected,  and because our bodies "absorb like sponges", this all seems to make perfect sense.  It is also believed that many childhood epidemics are due to chemical exposure: asthma, ADHD, autism, and reproductive disorders. It is further believed that certain childhood exposures can lead to adult onset of neurological diseases such as Alzheimers and Parkinson's Disease.

The author's chose (7) chemicals that most of us might likely be exposed to for their hands on research: 
  • radium - x-ray exposure
  • mercury - certain seafoods
  • PFCs - Teflon, key ingredient in coating some fry pans, some cosmetics, some clothing
  • phthalates and triclosans - smelly scents added to certain shampoos and conditioners, antibacterials soaps as well as other personal care products, have been linked to birth defects, reproductive issues and cancer. some of the brand names mentioned shocked me)
  • PCBs - flame retardants (Tris-Bp) used to treat some kids pajamas (thyroid issues)
  • BPAs (plastics, perfluorochemicals) - dump those plastics and especially those plastic baby bottles
  • DDT - pesticides (infants can be exposed through breast milk). Autism, ADHD, motor development impairment, reproductive defects and cancers
While it is not possible to completely avoid exposure to all chemicals, all the time, this book will help you to become better informed about the chemical dangers lurking close by.  Many of the products, would be easy to eliminate. The book also includes a quick reference type list of things individuals can do remove hazardous products from your lives. In case you'd like to become more of an environmental activist, there is other info about how to get involved.  I highly recommend this book; it's an eye-opener. If not for you, for the health of your children and grandchildren and the environment.
READ this BOOK - 5/5 Stars
(Library Book)

11 comments:

  1. Diane, this sounds like an informative book, but I'd probably end up getting rid of a lot of stuff around the house (hmmm. . .maybe that wouldn't be so bad).

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  2. Oh gosh, the stuff we're doing to our poor earth. And we didn't even realize what those chemicals are doing to our bodies. I need to read this book but like Suko had said, I might end up throwing everything out.

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  3. This does sound really good/informative. Reading books like this one, we often find out information we do not want to know but it is better to be informed, like Food, Inc.

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  4. Not only is this eye opening but I'm afraid if I read it then I would leave my house!!

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  5. You know what? I honestly am already freaking out about every little danger my kids are exposed to daily. I think reading this book may make me simply paranoid :)

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  6. When I think about all the stuff I use and surround myself with, the beauty products, the cookware, the plastics -***shudder**.

    One thing I did recently was change my lunch containers to glass since I eat leftovers at work.

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  7. I am glad you liked it. And the book sounds really informative. Thanks for sharing, Diane!

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  8. These are the kinds of books that keep me up at night! I always think I want to read these and then, ahhh I am freaked out for a really long time :)

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  9. As terrifying as it sounds, I think I OUGHT to read this.

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  10. Wow! These authors actually ingested some of these things on purpose?? That just seems crazy to me!! In spite of that, this book does seem like it would be really interesting, and I'd be really curious to see if I actually own anything with these dangerous chemicals in them. It sounds like an eye-opening book for sure!!

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  11. I'm pretty sure this will freak me out, but it looks like a must read.

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