Monday, June 25

Are Plastics Safe?

No, nope, and nah. There is no such thing as a safe plastic. Not only for the environment, but for you as well. I just finished watching three documentaries about plastics and toxins which was a good reminded that I need to cut back on my plastic. Now more than ever. Especially during such a crucial time, growing healthy new bone is not an easy thing. This image here sums up how I feel about it.

These Documentaries Are A Must Watch

Also Here's A Useful Guide that I got from Plastic Planet
Can you see my hand? Bwah! I had to take a photo of the iPad.

I've always been opposed to them, and try not to buy food or cosmetics in plastic. The basic concept is that anything packaged in plastic will contain the plastic in the product. Everything. It should be printed on the label in the ingredients. Something new that I learned from the film is that even touching plastic is harmful. It goes right through the skin and into the bloodstream. This effects everyone, but mostly children and mother's to be. Couples can actually become sterile because of plastic exposure. Men can become feminized, and woman have lower chances of having baby boys. Children are being born with asthma, allergies, ADD, autism, and hearing disables because their mother's are exposed during the child's vital development time.

Then there's the fact that plastics take centuries to decompose. It breaks my heart every time I throw plastic away or "recycle" it. Recycling plastics is not like paper, glass, or aluminum. It is very dirty, and produces a second-grade plastic that can only be used in certain ways because it's impure. Lastly, if we humans stopped using plastic today it would take the Earth 500 years to heal itself. That is intolerable.

Of course there's always hope, and if we wanted to we could fix this now. Scientists are even developing new materials for one-use products. Like this silk, check it out here, it's biodegradable and it can replace plastic. Now there's no need to live in fear, but it's good to be aware of the health risks involved. I thought to myself, "Wow, it would be hard to live without plastic, but I'm sure I can minimize it."


Here are some ways to reduce the amount of plastic:

1. Avoid food and beverages packaged in plastic. I know this sounds hard, but one baby step at a time. The way that I got myself to do it is to remind myself that most food packaged in plastic is dead or rotting food that isn't going to do my body any good anyway. It's all about the farmer's market baby! Companies that care will package their products in glass or paper anyway, so that's a good way to tell. If it's in plastic, take it out immediately at home and store it in glass or paper. I do this with my wild rice, but then again, I shouldn't be buying rice in the first place for a number of reasons. It's a bad comfort food and I'm working on it, but that's a perfect example of how a food packaged in plastic is probably not ideal for the diet in the first place.  

2. Buy clothing made of natural materials. Polyester, nylon, spandex, and latex should all be excluded and replaced with natural fibers like cotton, hemp, flax, and wool. I for one will pay closer attention to my clothing labels, because they stay on the body all day long. That's something to ponder indeed. Especially if I buy any clothing for little ones. I would never want to expose my nephew to toxins such as these. Of course purchasing organic clothing is extra awesome!

3. Buy cosmetics in glass or paper. Just like food, it's a sure way to see how much the company cares. Or better yet, make your own beauty products and store them in glass. I make my own lotion, lip balm, lip stain, cheek stain, and hairspray. Products like olive, jojoba, and tea tree oil go along way.

4. Don't use plastic bags. Bring your own cloth bags to the store. It's easy and cuts down on waste so much. That, and why would one want their items touching plastic? Let alone touching the plastic ourselves. 

5. Try to stay away from household items, toys, and gadgets made out of plastic. Yes, it's unfortunate that computers have BPA in them, that's one thing that I haven't been able to do anything about. If I didn't have my laptop I wouldn't be able to write or create artwork. Again, just try to limit these things. Especially plastic toys for little children. They put them in their mouths and get a big dose of the chemicals. Not cool whatsoever. This goes for plastic flatware and dishes as well. Switching over to bamboo or glass is the best.

If we all do our part it will make for a better future. Money is powerful and every time something is purchased that's a vote cast. Support responsible companies that have you and the earth's best interest in mind. One little step at a time.

Cheers and here's to happy, healthy living.
~Claudia

13 comments:

  1. Oh I've already got that covered, with the brita water bottle, It's perfectly safe for it's use including tea!! But how exactly does plastic cause mental disabilites? I thought there was no cause for these things. I also like the ipad by the way lol. Got any great apps you'd like to recommend?

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  2. The Brita filters are completely made out of plastic including the throwaway filters. That is something I need to figure out too. If I could afford it, I would buy a filter for under the sink or buy reverse-osmosis water from Whole Foods in a 5 gallon glass jug.

    Yes, I recommend watching the documentaries. They explain it better than I.

    I don't really buy apps. I like the free solitaire one though. :) I was just playing that today. I normally use it just for Netflix and Internet.

    Cheers,
    ~Claudia

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  3. U know, I was looking for an under the sink one myself but couldn't find any. I got plenty of apps myself such as Netflix, shazam, and etc. Hey have u tried video chatting with someone through there?

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  4. Yeah, they are pretty expensive.
    Cool. :) Sounds fun.
    No, I don't do chatting.

    ~Claudia

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  5. Ok, oh and I haven't been drinking plastic bottle water recently but I have to figure out what to replace the other plastic stuff with. For when u said that plastics cause autism and ADD, I thought the cause for this was unknown. How did u find that out?

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  6. It's in one of the films. They explain it. Woman that are exposed when pregnant are more likely to have children born with these problems.

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  7. First off: Alice In Chains, eh? Nice! >:D

    I really was hoping they had found some forms of plastic to be safe, but it just goes to show one cannot fully trust everyone.
    Although, deep down, I'm not really surprised... As far as I'm aware, all plastics are a derivative of petroleum.

    It's just so unfortunate that so many part of industry seem to rely on plastics... and in some ways, it seems some things simply couldn't exist without it, but that's where things like the silk-based materials come into play.

    I think one of the main issued with technology an progress therein lies in the monetary cost placed on progress vs. "cost effectiveness". Companies only want to spend money on what's both cheap and effective, instead of researching cleaner alternatives, that make actually prove MORE effective in the long run. I see this across the board in industry. It's sad.

    I've always thought glass was better, and recently, I've noticed just how much more plastic I'm gathering up for collection... I need to take stock of the available products packaged in better materials here...

    It's just a shame that that affects some hobbies of mine, like building model aircraft. They have always been molded in Polystyrene. I've known that word since I was little because of the type of glue used to bond the parts, but I'd have never known the plastic itself was toxic, too. That's one hobby I don't see myself giving up, but I certainly hope the models are eventually molded in something else.

    Thanks for this Claudia. <3

    Your druid,
    Aaron

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  8. Gotcha. I'll be sure to watch them.

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  9. Aaron: Heehee! Yesh! Hurray!

    Yeah, sad indeed. :( Sometimes I feel betrayed by the companies because we trust them. Even plant-based plastics, which are getting more popular these days, are not eco-friendly because of the methods used to make them. Yes, I agree. We all rely so heavily on it in someway, that it will be tough to phase out. I'm hopeful though. Go silk!

    Indeed, glass is way better. Especially for food. :3 In one of the films, there's a part where families bring out all of the things made with plastic out onto their front lawn and it's crazy! It just shows how much is around us all the time. It's no wonder the body is overburdened. So I try to picture what I might have to bring outside if I did it, and it helps me put things in perspective.

    Yeah, a lot of my hobbies too. Like my art bin is full of plastics, from acrylic paint to plastic rulers.

    Oh well, we will try our best.


    Matthew: Fantastic! :D They really are worth the time.

    <3 Claudia

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  10. I definitely dig AiC. Sad, what happened to the original vocalist...
    Are you up for band suggestions?

    Wow, plant-based polymers, too? That's a shame... I need to watch the video.
    Yeah, go silk! I'd love to see it become prevalent.

    I'll definitely try to get things in glass wherever I can. It's essentially unchanged from it's source material, ya?
    Oh yes, I've definitely noticed how many things I have that are made of plastics. I've always cringed at how many commercials there are for pointless little toys that people will buy for their kids, who will then most likely lose interest in them after only a week, if that long. Then all that plastic probably won't even end up in recycle bins. I bet many of them aren't even labelled for collection...

    Yeah, I have a lot of plastic art supplies that I felt were still useful, so I didn't want to toss them. My favorite ruler is made of aluminum though, so I'm happy for that. I have a bunch of stainless steel rulers and t-squares... Want some? :D

    We will absolutely do our best. It's only right!

    <3
    Druid Aaron

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  11. Ah cool. Yes, indeed it's sad. He left us with some good music though. Sure! Of course.

    Yes, glass is cool and it can be easily recycled without any degradation. :)

    Yes, indeed. I just saw this too about video games: http://img.gawkerassets.com/post/9/2012/06/environmen.jpg

    That is madness! I try super hard these days to borrow my games or buy digital copies.

    Haha, I sure do appreciate the offer, but I have like 3 metal rulers too. I just love that clear plastic one because I can see through it.

    Heehee. Yes, we shall. I'm sure being a druid and all, that you're pretty harmonious with nature. <3

    ~Claudia

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  12. Yeah, he had a great voice and use of harmonies that just isn't heard by many others.
    Well, if you're into music with more complex music theory, there are a few I would suggest.
    Some of my general favorites in rock and metal, old and newer are:

    (older)Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, King Crimson, Rush, (newer) Dream Theater, Symphony X, Iron Maiden, Iced Earth, Blind Guardian

    I saw that your favorite is Red Hot Chili Peppers? That's awesome. They wrote some great stuff.

    Wow. That IS a lot of plastic. o_O
    Well hey. If I have a game you'd like to borrow, feel free to ask! I know you'd take care of them, so I trust you, too. :3
    I have had a policy of not lending games, after I had a couple damaged, but for you I will definitely make an exception.
    It's just so unfortunate, because there can be so much great artwork in the packaging, and I'm not very confident in the concept of digital "ownership", especially when companies might decide to change things, at the disadvantage of the user. It can be advantageous, too, if there were a bug fix, etc... but I suppose I'm just not very trusting of companies in general. Nintendo has also begun offering future releases in download format, so that's a step in the right direction.
    I wish chemists would put more importance on developing viable replacements for polymers. The chemistry has been around for a long time. We should have superior materials by now.

    Heh. No worries. Seeing through the ruler is definitely a good thing. :D

    I try to be as harmonious I can, but I also think I could do better. It's difficult to find the things I need in better packaging, even the healthy foods, but that may be the result of living in a desert, where many goods must be transported in. It's one reason I long for a greener place. I actually suspect you are more harmonious with Nature than I am in some very important ways. <3
    Still, I've been known to go out of my way to interact with life, and lay to rest those who have been lost. Flowing water is a source of inner peace for me, while the clouds and weather fill me with energy. Trees teach me patience. The misunderstood wolf is a shining example of wisdom, cooperation, and loyalty.

    What about you? I feel that your heart and mind are in the same place, although we haven't discussed your inspirations. Should I call you "Druid Claudia"? ;D

    Your druid,
    Aaron

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  13. Awesome! Those are all wonderful bands. I had to look some of them up on YouTube to have a listen. Quite nice indeed. :) I've been to a Roger Waters concert, I got 2nd row because the people that got 1st row out bid me on the ticket auction. Oh well. I love being that close to the stage. Concert's are magical.

    Yes, indeed. TRCP have been there for me throughout life. Can't go wrong. :)

    Yes, it is isn't it. It's important to see the whole picture. Perhaps I should do a post on eco gaming, heehee, and put that image up.

    Aww. Thank you so much for offering about the games. That's so kind of you. I'm sorry to hear that about your belongings. :( Yes, I promise to take extremely good care of them. I value all of my items like they're collectors items. Right now I'm playing FFVI (SNES version). The cartridge is still in pristine condition. Actually, I had a sealed copy of the Japanese Legend of Zelda for the Famicom that I sold to a video game museum. I figured then everyone can enjoy seeing it behind glass.

    Are you playing anything right now? I see that you love Nintendo. That's so cool.

    Yes, I hear you about digital vs actually owning an item, but the way that I see it is that I probably, in all honest, won't use it too much after I'm done with it. It will sit on the shelf. With the exception of my top favorites I try to pass on my belongs to someone else that will love them just as much after I'm finished with them. Indeed, it would be nice to have better packaging, like maybe even paper like PC games. :)

    Oh I see. Well, the fact that you want to try is wonderful. Do they have farmer's markets by you? That's a great place to start, because none of that's packaged in plastic and one can bring their own cloth bags. Aww! It sounds like you're pretty in tune with nature too. Most don't speak that way. :)

    Me, oh my, well I dream of freedom. Sometimes I feel I don't have it.

    Druid, yes, sometimes. But mostly pirate and elf. That's what I relate to most. :)

    ~Claudia

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