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Fragrance: A Growing Health and Environmental Hazard. Part 2


This article was authored by Klaus Ferlow, HMH (Honorary Master Herbalist), innovator, lecturer, researcher, writer, founder Ferlow Botanical Enterprises Ltd, Vancouver, B.C. manufacturing/distributing organic toxin-free medicinal herbal and personal care products to professional health & wellness practitioners in Canada and parts of USA since 1993.

Fragrance: A Growing Health and Environmental Hazard. Part 2

Make sure to read: Fragrance: A Growing Health and Environmental Hazard. Part 1.

Intentional Fragrance Exposure in Public Places

Fragrances are dispensed through ventilation systems and by individual units in many public areas, including airplanes and buildings (offices, stores, restaurants, hotels, airports, hospitals, nursing homes etc.) Fragrances are designed to:

* Add a "pleasant" scent to the air (food smells in shopping malls and floral scents in stores)

* Cover-up poor air quality and insufficient fresh-air ventilation (odours, cigarette smoke, exhaust, pesticides, mould, and chemicals outgassing from furniture, carpet, equipment, cleaning products etc.)

* Change the mood and behaviour of people (increase worker productivity, increase retail sales, relax the public in potentially stressful places or situations such as airports, subways etc. and disguise unpleasant odours in hospitals and nursing homes).

Advertising creates the illusion that fragranced products will make consumers happy, sexually attractive, popular, fashionable, clean and fresh smelling, good moms and dads, and great housekeepers.

To deliberately expose the public to fragrance chemicals, with the intend to alter their mood and manipulate their behaviour, without their informed consent, is unethical.

Fragrance Chemicals Are Everywhere!

Consider how much they can contribute to the following grim statistic:

* One out of every 2.18 people will develop cancer

* 62% of Americans are overweight or obese, 31% of adults (59 million) are rated obese, 15% of 6-19 years old (9 million), and 10% of 2 -5 year old were seriously overweight

* 16 million Americans have diabetes, and there is an epidemic of type 2 diabetes in youth

* 25 million have chronic liver disease, 8-9 million have end stage liver disease, and 4-5 million have liver failure in the US

* 20 million have chronic kidney disease

* 17.3 million Americans have asthma, asthma and asthmatic related deaths have increased 75% since 1980

* 21 million have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)

* 25 million people have migraines, and 45 million have chronic, severe headaches

* one in six children in the US suffers from neurologic problems such as autism, aggression, dyslexia and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder

* an estimated 25%ds of American couples are infertile. The sperm count in men has dropped in half over the past 50 years

* approx. half of all pregnancies in the US result in prenatal or postnatal death or in a less than healthy baby

* 49% of Americans can't fall asleep or stay asleep

* 40% of US adults suffer from hypothyroidism, thyroid problems

* 35 million Americans have chronic sinus problems, 9 million have rhinitis

* 20% of all Americans have allergies

* s13% of US adults have anxiety disorders, the #1 mental health problem (NIMH)

* 25% of adults have high blood pressure

For people who are chemically injured, fragrance exposures may be debilitating or even life-threatening. For everyone, exposure to fragrance chemicals adds to their "total body load" of synthetic chemicals, which can greatly increase the chance of developing health problems.

Your Daily Exposure To Chemicals Is Extensive....And Growing!

* 30% or more of the US population reacts to one or more synthetic substances

* between 80-100.000 synthetic chemicals are in use today and approx. 1000 new ones are added on every year, most of which have not been tested individually or in combination for their effects on human health

* continual exposure to these common, pervasive, low-level chemicals can cause an initial reaction and then a spreading effect where one then reacts to many other kind of chemicals

* environmental illness and chronic disease caused by exposure to chemicals is widespread an increasing rapidly at an alarming rate.

* Chemicals are everywhere, so it is of utmost importance to choose "non-toxic" alternatives in all aspects of live.

Many Products Can Contain Fragrance Chemicals:

Fabric softeners, laundry detergents, soaps (bar, liquid), dishwashing detergents, bleach and bleach powders, air fresheners and deodorizers (in buildings, cars etc.), disinfectant sprays, pesticides, candles, potpourris, tissues and toilet papers, plastic bags, trash from kitchen, diapers, clothing and fabrics, toys, books, hair products (hair sprays, shampoos, conditioners, gels, cosmetics, hand and body lotions, bath powders and oils, deodorants, anti-perspirants, shaving cream, after shaves, perfumes, colognes, nail polish and polish remover, advertising materials, scented papers & Magazines, marking pens, food additives, kitty litter etc.

From 1980 to 1989 (and you can imagine that this trend has dramatically excellerated from there on), industry sales doubled for fragrance materials used to scent products! The present proliferation of fragranced products now contain more powerful, more volatile and longer-lasting fragrances, which means your exposure to toxic fragrance chemicals has dramatically increasedl!!

You are not protected by the government from exposure to fragrance chemical products.

Despite the widespread , constant exposure to an unkown number of fragrance chemicals in thousands of products, there is minimal government regulation and monitoring of their safety.

* Trade-secret laws keep toxicity testing and identification of fragrance ingredients from being accurately and truthfully disclosed to anyone, including the FDA and Health Canada

* The FDA does not review the safety of cosmetic products or their ingredients, and can't require manufacturers to do safety testing before these products are marketed

* Fragrance chemicals do not have to be listed on the product label

* The fragrance industry is primarily self-regulated.

A variety of fragrance-free products are available in the market place, just read the product labels carefully.

Misleading advertising words such as: natural, floral, hypoallergenic, natural scent, and the name of lowers make you think the product is safe when it may not be safe. Some unscented and fragrance free products can contain masking fragrance to cover up the smell of other ingredients.


Focus on Fragrance and Health, Louise Kosta

Our Toxic World, Doris Rapp, MD

Death in the Air, Dr. Leonhard Horowitz

Healing the Planet, A Primer in Environmental Medicine, Jozef J. Krop

Dispatches, from the war zone of environmental health, Helke Ferrie

100.000.000 GUINEA PIGS, Dangers in Everyday Foods, Drugs and Cosmetics, Arthur Kallet & F.J. Schlink

The Cancer Smart Consumer Guide, Labour Environmental Alliance Society, Vancouver B.C.

Acute Toxic Effects of Fragrance Products, Rosalind & Julius Anderson

Less Toxic Alternatives, Carolyn Gorman

Fragranced Products Information Network (http://www.fpinva.org)



Words of Wisdom

You cannot cheat nature, however much you may cheat your fellow man.

Galilei (Italian Professor and Natural Scientist 1564 - 1642)

See also the second part of this article.

This information is offered for its educational value only and should not be used in the diagnose, treatment, or prevention of disease. Any attempt to diagnose and treat illness should come under the direction of your health care practitioner.

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