Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Scarier Than A Halloween Horror Show

So I can't really review Planet in Peril since I didn't watch very much. Partly because the kids didn't go to bed very easily and partly because I kept getting distracted by The Girls Next Door and Kimora on the next channel up... I don't even like those stupid shows!!! Ugh! Anyway, I did watch the entire end of the show, and it happened to coincide with a post that I wrote yesterday and had intended to post today anyway. So here it is.

How scary is this CNN story about high chemical levels in kids' bodies?!? I was especially disturbed about the polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) which is a flame retardant since I recently blogged about kids' PJs. According to a Green Guide article there is not any sleepwear treated with PBDEs. Just to be cautious and because I got an anonymous comment about their PJs not being safe, I have emailed LLBean to find out if and with what they treat their sleepwear (both fleece and cotton). I'll update when I hear back from their customer service.** PBDES are still used in textiles and mattresses. Yikes... don't be surprised if you see me blogging about new mattresses in the near future!

The other chemical that was evident in high doses was phthalates which is flat out terrifying since it is found in bottles, toys, personal care products, and cosmetics (also happens to be very timely since I just posted about wanting to make some product changes and plan to post about it a lot more). Double Yikes!

To be honest, if I had the opportunity I am not sure I would opt to find out the chemical levels in myself or my children. I am too much of a worry wart. I think I'll just continue to avoid as best I can. Would you check your levels if given the chance?

**I did hear back from LLBean customer service. Their response was "I apologize that the formulas used for both fabrics to create the flame resistance are proprietary information. Both materials have the treatment built in on a molecular level of the fabric. The company that provides the cotton material for the Bean's Cotton Knit PJ Sets has a web site at which may be useful to you."


Everyday Yogini said...

Oh man. It is scary stuff. I had an argument with my husband about the linoleum in our kitchen when Clara started crawling. Here she is, licking the floor all day long and I *know* the flooring is filled with phthalates...

I don't think I would want to know what our levels are, either. I, too, would worry about it too much. Fortunately (or unfortunately) I am allergic to parabens and Sodium Laureth Sulfate, so our personal care products are free of those items. I hadn't thought much about textiles!

If you get any info out of, I look forward to hearing what they say!

Penny said...

I think I'll just keep my level of caution fairly loose about the clothes thing. I'd be more worried about the stuff in plastics personally.

Shannon said...

Keep me posted Kristen...This is yucky stuff. On another 'contamination' note, have you read anything about metals in our bodies? I have read some on this considering my mouth has the old mercury fillings...It's not fun at all to think about all of the stuff that's in our bodies that doesn't belong there.

Stacy said...

Hi -- I found you through NaBloPoMo and have been enjoying your site.

I didn't follow that story but just last week bought my older son new pjs! I didn't intend to buy organic, but it turns out that the pjs I got (from Hannah Anderson) are organic. And all their other cotton follows a European standard that has the 100 most harmful substances removed (I think it was called ecotek).

Thanks for the info, and the great site!

Crunchy Domestic Goddess said...

i just blogged about this as well. it's scary stuff, but wasn't really surprising to me.

The Not Quite Crunchy Parent said...

Great post!

I'm on a Halloween and toxins kick recently - following up by posting on all of the stories on "scary" halloween stuff. That's how I found your terrific blog.

BTW - I think L.L. Bean's form letter shold be answered with a letter asking for additional information before you give a call to The Boston Globe (nearest big city paper) and ask them to investigate :-)

I like L.L. Bean but do not like form letters!