A recently published book, Greening Your Family, by New Hampshire resident Lindsey Carmichael, helps make shopping and purchases simpler and safer. Carmichael began her research after her young son was diagnosed with asthma. Her research into the possible causes led her to earn a Master of Public Health and write this book. The slim volume is a fantastic
reference, as it is organized well and is easy to use. Each of the topics, which range from green cleaning to personal care products to food, begins with a few paragraphs on why conventional products are harmful and what to look for in a safe product, followed by a list of companies that make non-toxic products. Many are brands that are commonly found in drugstores and supermarkets, such as Burt's Bees and Tom's of Maine.
I'm currently running low on laundry detergent - the old me would have purchased the cheapest option, but after reading this book, I don't feel comfortable buying a product with benzene, a carcinogen linked to leukemia and blood disorders, so I'll bring the book along as a reference to find my trusty new laundry detergent.
One of the most interesting aspects of the book is the Ten Americans study by the Environmental Working Group (EWG). They tested the umbilical cord blood of ten babies and found 287 toxic chemicals, 212 of which were banned 30 years ago. Watch Ken Cook of EWG talk about the study (the short talk is both
touching and funny).
Learn more about Ten Americans and what you can do, here.
About the green blog
Helping Boston live a greener, more environmentally friendly life.
Christopher Reidy covers business for the Globe.
Doug Struck covers environmental issues from Boston.
Glenn Yoder produces Boston.com's Lifestyle pages.
Eric Bauer is site architect of Boston.com.
Bennie DiNardo is the Boston Globe's deputy managing editor/multimedia.
Dara Olmsted is a local sustainability professional focusing on green living.