A quick personal social media poll resulted in 59% real trees and 41% artificial trees.
However, this is mainly because I live in the Midwest.
This blog isn’t about hyping a specific, safe option. I’ve learned than knowing your options aids an informed decision on what you’d like in your house. And that’s what I’m about- knowing your options and making your OWN informed decision.
Artificial Christmas trees are becoming more and more popular. There’s no needles to clean up, they can be reused, they can save you money- the list goes on. With this convenience list, at what expense does it impact your health?
Most artificial Christmas trees are manufactured in China and made from PVC (polyvinyl chloride), a petroleum- based plastic.
Fun Fact: PVC production is the largest and fastest-growing use of chlorine.
Chlorine is the basic building block of our most notorious toxins:
CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons) which destroyed the ozone layer,
Agent Orange (a tactical herbicide),
PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls) and
DDT (dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane) pesticides.
PVC must be combined with other chemicals to create its final products. Phthalates, heavy metals like lead, fungicides, and other toxic substances are used in this process. These additives aren’t chemically bound to the PVC. What does that even mean? It means they can be off-gassing in your home.
Off-gassing is the airborne release of a chemical.
Are you familiar with that ‘new car smell’ or that ‘new carpet smell’?
PVC can also give off lead dust which is released into the air. Lead, as I’m sure you’re aware, is incredibly toxic to kiddos. In 2008, PVCs were banned from children’s toys in the United States. Why? Because phthalates impact natural hormone functioning in children increasing chances of birth defects, testicular cancer, liver problems, etc. Unfortunately, they haven’t been banned from school supplies.
Artificial Christmas trees typically contain flame retardant chemicals. These chemicals are associated with hormone disruption, infertility, thyroid disorders, oxidative stress, immune system disruption, etc.
Did you know? A British study presented at the March 2012 national meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS) showed that halogen-based flame retardants increase the danger of invisible toxic gases, the leading cause of death in fires.
These flame retardant chemicals are not only used in artificial Christmas trees. They are also added to carpets, furniture, crib mattresses, cars, and many other products.
Now, Karen, don’t panic! If you’re an artificial Christmas tree owner, there are precautions that will help reduce exposure.
You may be asking yourself, how in the world will I know if the artificial Christmas tree I'm purchasing is a safer option!? Here's a couple tips-
The more you know,
Per MiraLAX’s website they say,
“MiraLAX works with your body’s natural process to provide effective relief from occasional constipation. Because it works with the body, MiraLAX provides a gentle experience, and doesn't cause harsh side effects. Proven safe and effective.”
Well, holy crap, if it’s on their website it’s gotta be true- right?!? WRONG!
Active Ingredient: Polyethylene Glycol (PEG) 3350
What is MiraLAX composed of? Polyethylene Glycol (PEG) 3350. PEG 3350 is a petroleum derivative- essentially liquid plastic. (You read that right!)
I strongly recommend removing all PEG ingredients from your makeup and skincare regiment.
That’s just how toxic it is when applied on your skin.
With MiraLAX you’re actually ingesting Polyethylene Glycol (PEG) 3350! Yikes.
Healthcare giant Bayer advertises MiraLAX, its popular over-the-counter laxative, as an effective treatment for constipation with “no harsh side effects.” Yet over 2,000 complaints to the FDA say otherwise, with shocking descriptions of patients, especially young children, suffering from kidney problems, seizures, psychiatric conditions, and other severe complications consumers blame on the drug. Has Bayer been keeping the public in the dark about MiraLAX side effects?"
Common Side Effects of Polyethylene Glycol:
Did you know that the FDA does not approve the usage of MiraLAX in pediatric patients? However, it's often suggested for kiddos. The safety is continually being investigated, BUT nothing has come back conclusive. Interesting, isn’t it? Something that is readily used, hasn’t been thoroughly studied, continually being recommended- and continues to have an influx of negative side effects. Remember I took, "proven safe and effective," right off of MiraLAX's website...
Fun Fact: Bayer owns MiraLAX and Roundup- both deemed safe for consumption.
Both coming with a laundry list of side effects and severe health complication claims.
What are Some Common Causes Constipation?
Sure, laxatives like MiraLAX may help you poop. But, at what risk to your body? Why not get to the root issue of why you’re having constipation problems?
You body can become dependent on these stimulant laxatives, even causing damage to your muscles, nerves, and tissues of your bowel and intestines.
You poop every day, so your gut is healthy? WRONG! Check out our stool chart to see where your bowel movements stack up. Ideally, you want to be type 3 or type 4.
Simple Ways to Help Your Kiddo Poop?
Disclaimer: when I talk about improving gut health, I'm talking about more than simply adding a probiotic. However, a high quality probiotic is step in the right direction!
Simple Ways to Help You Poop?
If you or someone you love is struggling with constipation, please, reach out!
Not all supplements are created equal, not all probiotics are created equal, not all medical professionals are created equal.
If you’d like help navigating what you should be taking to improve your gut health, contact us today!
Let’s get back to health,
Supplements and probiotics need to be purchased through a medical provider.
You can order yours here.
Ther-Biotic Complete by Klaire Labs is a great broad-spectrum probiotic.
Dr. Taryn Stittleburg, DC, CFMP, PSc.D