The Maids of Portland, Maine

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Are Breast Cancer and the Enviroment Related?

Women today are more likely to develop breast cancer than any previous generation. Hard to believe despite the decades-old war on cancer. It is well known that risk factors such as early menarche, later menopause, childlessness and delayed childbearing are established, but these established risk factors do not account for all breast cancer cases. Does the enviroment play a part?
Since World War II, breast cancer incidences have risen. Many people feel the rise is because that is when industry began pumping out pesticides, plastics, solvents and other chemicals that leave residues in our soil, water and air. Studies in labs show that these chemicals can cause tumors in breasts, hasten their growth, or leave mammary glands more susceptible to carcinogens.
It is interesting to note that breast cancer rates declined in the United States between the years of 2003 and 2004, which is attributed to women forgoing hormone replacement therapy after a study reported that it can cause breast cancer. The goal is to find ways to have the disease not to develop at all, and if we are to genuially hope to defeat the disease, one must look at all factors- enviroment included.
~Silent Spring Institute

Monday, March 12, 2012

Consumers and Toxic Chemicals

It's is time to become more serious about shielding consumers from toxic chemicals. Common- sense controls on chemicals used in everyday products merit everyone's support. Industrial chemicals are widely used in everyday products like furniture, food packaging, personal care products and toys. These chemicals, can and do, leach out and enter our bodies, putting our health at risk.
> The plastic hardener bisphenol-A, commonly used in baby bottles and canned food lining, is an endrocrine disruptor and can cause neurological damage, especially in young children. A study done in 2011 found BPA in the bodies of 96% of pregnant women. Campbell soups have promised to remove their BPA lined soup cans, but gives no time frame for it's elimination and replacement.
> Phthalates, a plastic softener commonly found in air fresheners and plastic school binders, has been linked to birth defects and is found in the bodies of 99% of pregnant women.
> Testing by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has found more than 212 industrial chemicals in the bodies of most Americans, including at least 6 known carcinogens and dozens that have been linked to cancer, birth defects and other adverse health effects.
> As consumers we rely on the manufactures to both adequately test the chemicals in their products and label accordingly. It is astounding to note that in the last 35 years, only 200 of the 80,000 chemicals currently used in commerce have been tested for their threat to human health and also to the enviroment. So, we can safely say that the vast majority of chemicals on the market today remain untested!!! That is frightening!!!
> How can this happen? The Toxic Substance Control Act is completely ineffective in preventing large companies to test their chemicals before they are used in consumer products. What needs to take place is the passing of the Safe Chemicals Act which would ensure that chemical manufacturers would provide the EPA with minimum test data for all the chemicals they produce. We urge you all to support this important public health legislation.