Is Cleaning Killing You?

Is cleaning killing you by giving you cancer, reducing sperm counts, causing lung, liver, and kidney damage, causing asthma, or disrupting hormones? Find out from this blog post from Shaklee’s Healthwise Blog. Dr. Jamie tells why it is so important to be careful about  “clean!”

Your health and the environment

Your health and the environment

You are committed to good health and have daily activities and routines you follow in order to support your health. On most days, you start your morning with a workout or a power walk, then make your high-protein smoothee, and take your supplements, and brush your teeth. Then, throughout the day, you try to make the right decisions about eating healthy, drinking plenty of water, wearing your sunscreen, and putting activity into your day.

All these small steps taken day in and day out lead to a stronger and healthier YOU!

To round out your daily health routine, I want to be sure you aren’t missing an important part of the health puzzle by being exposed to chemicals in your environment.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) tracks more than 84,000 chemicals used in commerce.  These chemicals, have worked their way into our everyday lives. Now, no matter how clean you try to live, it is impossible to escape exposure from these chemicals that may put an amazingly heavy burden on our liver and other detoxification pathways in our bodies. Chemicals are found in the food we eat, clothes we wear, personal care products we use, and even the very products that we use to keep our homes clean and safe.

Take a look at the chemicals found in common household cleaners:

Name Found in Potentially harmful effects
Phthalates Solvents used to make fragrances Endocrine disrupters: Men with high levels of phthalates in their blood have reduced sperm counts.
Perchloroethylene (PERC) Dry-cleaning solution, spot removers, carpet cleaners The EPA classifies PERC as a possible carcinogen and has ordered a phase-out of the chemical by 2020.
Triclosan An antibacterial found in dishwashing detergents and hand soaps Leads to drug-resistant bacteria and is a possible hormone disrupter.
2-Butoxyethanol Mostly found in window cleaners, is responsible for the sweet smell General irritant when inhaled, at high levels can damage lungs, liver, and kidneys
Ammonia Found in many cleaning products When inhaled, it can irritate the lungs and potentially worsen asthma.
Chlorine Another ubiquitous chemical, found in toilet bowl cleaner, mildew removers, laundry products, and even tap water Chlorine is very reactive and irritates skin and lungs. It may disrupt the thyroid.

While it can be daunting to think that we are surrounded by so many chemicals, the good news is that there are fantastic natural choices that will do the job these chemicals do just as well without exposing you and your family to potentially harmful fumes, solvents, and toxins.

Be sure you only have safe, green cleaners under your sink and in your laundry. Choosing green cleaners means that you are doing the best for your health, the environment, and your family’s well-being!

What is your favorite green cleaning tip?

Be Well!

Are You Giving Your Kids Asthma? by Sloan Barnett

child-asthmaThis article by journalist Sloan Barnett appears in the Huffington Post Healthy Living section. When her experience with son Spencer terrified their family, Sloan became passionate about eliminating the strongest asthma inducing chemicals from their home. She studied intently to find the reason for his attack. Do you know a child with asthma?

My son Spencer had just turned three when, one day, I noticed he was coughing a lot. At first, I didn’t think anything of it. Kids get sick. I told him to lie down, thinking he’d be fine — it was just a cough. A short time later, I realized that his heart was pounding, as if it were trying to beat right out of his chest.

Terrified, my husband, Roger, and I rushed him to the hospital. We spent the next two nights in the ICU. The doctors told us he had something called reactive airways dysfunction syndrome — a form of asthma. Neither my husband nor I had any family history of asthma, going back four generations. So we concluded that the cause was environmental.

It didn’t take long to discover that the U.S. is in the midst of an asthma epidemic. The number of people diagnosed with asthma grew by 4.3 million in the last decade. About one in 10 American children currently suffer from asthma — a nearly threefold increase from 3.6 percent in 1980. A suspected cause of these stunning changes?

At least six well-designed epidemiological studies have pointed to one answer: A strong link between the use of certain cleaning products and asthma. That stopped me cold. The cause of my son’s asthma may have been me. I may have been poisoning my own son.

The good news is that this is one area where easy, affordable solutions are available. First and foremost, you should avoid what can be the strongest asthma triggering chemicals present in conventional cleaners such as bleach, hydrochloric acid and ammonia. And as we discussed last week, these chemicals are often mixed together to create an even more dangerous combination. Next go out and buy yourself non-toxic, biodegradable, green cleaning products.

1. Gather all your cleaning products and read the labels.

2. Notice how dangerous and toxic they are. Then, take a deep breath (but not near the cleaning products).

3. Take all the ones that say “danger,” “poison” or contain chlorine bleach and ammonia and put them in a garbage bag.

4. Call your local sanitation department and ask them how to dispose of them safely.

5. Buy green cleaning products, and breathe deeply and safely.

By the way, my son is 11 and hasn’t been to the emergency room in 1,825 days. But who’s counting?

Thanks for sharing your experience and for all the research you have done, Sloan. So glad you found safe products for Spencer and your entire family.

The Iron Is Gone

ironLast week it was announced that the Monopoly game piece, the iron, is being retired. So sad. That’s my piece. Ironing has always been a relaxing way for me to de-stress–get some of the wrinkles out of life and clothes.  As a little girl I ironed all the “flat” pieces: hankies (anyone know what they are?), pillowcases, tablecloths, and as I grew older, sheets.  And I still love to iron.  Most people think that’s a little crazy, but when I share that I offer a prayer for whoever the item belongs to, they allow me the craziness. So I keep ironing and praying.

The lost iron is just another example of change. There is plenty of change, in our appliances, our technology, our ways of relating, our businesses. Sometimes it’s hard to keep up. My business, Shaklee, keeps changing with the times: new programs, new apps, new products. But I’m grateful the integrity of the company and the science behind the products never changes. When you use Shaklee, you know that you are putting the very best in your body, on your body, and around your home.

Shaklee is part-time work for me, so I’d be happy to do some ironing for you! And just wondering, how are you keeping up with the changes in life and business?


Getting Rid of Bacteria, Viruses, and Fungi

Bacteria, viruses, and fungi are everywhere–bathrooms, kitchens, pet areas–so wouldn’t it be great to know we are getting out the bad guys?basic G and H

Here’s a great experiment done in a school biology class.  Students were each asked to bring in a cleaning product.  They mixed each of the products at a water-to-cleaner ratio beginning at 1-1, then increasing the ratio and ending at a ratio of 1-100,000 (1 part cleaner to 100,000 water).  When the experiment was over the instructor came to one student and asked her about the product.  The product was Shaklee Basic G (#00525); it was the ONLY product that grew no bacteria in every vial.  In most of the products, the bacteria began to grow in even the strongest solution.


  •  nonflammable
  •  no harmful fumes
  •  safe for the environment
  •  pennies in cost per 16 oz spray bottle
  •  Kills 99% of all bacteria & viruses including canine parovirus & feline leukemia


  •  Disinfecting spray:  1/2 – 1 tsp. of G to 16 oz water
  •  Drain cleaner:  1/8 c of G to 2 gal of water. Pour down drains and cover for 10   min.    Pour tea kettle of boiling water down drain
  •  Fridge/freezer odors:  Remove shelves and racks. Place in tub with hot water to cover and 1/2 c G.  Clean the rest of the internal areas with 1 tbs. G in a quart of water
  •  Toilet bowl cleaner:  3-4 drops in toilet bowl
  •  Diaper area disinfectant:  Spray areas with Basic G spray
  •  Horse stable area:  Use 1 tbs. of G in 1 gal of water, spray daily
  •  Kitchen fan filter:  Soak in sink with 1 tbs. G, 1 tbs. H, 1-2 tbs. D
  •  Humidifiers:  Add 1 tsp. of G to every gal of water you use in your humidifier
  •  Floor cleaner:  1 tbs. of G to gal of water
  •  Pet areas:  Clean with 1/2 tsp. of G in 16 oz of water, spray & wipe
  •  Room deodorizer:  2 tbs. of G in 16 oz of water
  •  Garbage disposal deodorant:  Make a tray of G ice cubes and run through 2 tsp.  of G in a pint of water…freeze.  Don’t reuse trays for human consumption
  •  Litter box areas: Clean floor with 2 tbs. of G, 1/4 c white vinegar in 1 gal of water
  •  Swimming pool decks:  1 tbs. of G to 1 gal of water apply 2x week to keep bacteria and infections down
  • Rinse Basic G off with clear water.  Do not mix Basic G with anything other than water.

And don’t forget about Germ Off Disinfecting Wipes (#00322) which kill 99.9% of E. Coli and Salmonella Bacteria.