Ladies Beware: Consider the Switch to Healthy Feminine Products By Rachel Schwartzman #wellbeingwednesday
Last week I discussed the importance of clean skin care products, this week I thought I’d continue along these same lines, and bring to your attention the chemicals found in your everyday Tampons and Sanitary Pads. Most women will menstruate for 5 days a month, for about 40 years, using 17,000 sanitary products and most women don’t know that these everyday store bought products are filled with chemicals. So for today’s Wellbeing Wednesday tip, I will share with you what’s in your feminine products and alternatives are. I believe it’s important to know what you are placing next to, or inside your female bits.
Originally tampons were made of cotton, but as absorbency became more of an issue, super absorbent artificial fibres like rayon, were added to tampons. The insertion of these fibers coincides with the increase risk of Toxic Shock Syndrome.
Conventional tampons brands contain; aluminum, fragrance, alcohols and pesticides. Sanitary products are bleached, leaving behind dioxins in the process. Dioxins, are a chlorine compound linked to cancer, endometriosis and other hormonal imbalances. Plastic applicators contain phthalates, another well known hormone disrupting agent. Lastly, 90% of commercial sanitary pads are made from crude oil plastic, this means we make plastic laden feminine hygiene products, adding about 180 billion plastic bags to our waste stream.
There are alternatives!
Buy Organic Pads and Tampons that have not been bleached. It’s that simple. They work the same way as the conventional brands, without all the added crap. The plastic applicators from conventional brands are sitting in our landfills, and when buying organic, those applicators are biodegradable, or even better buy them without applicators.
Consider reusable devices such as The Diva Cup, The Keeper or Luna Pads. I know it may take some getting used to the idea of reusable sanitary products, but there is something to be said about knowing your body, keeping yourself healthy and you will actually save a lot of money in the long run. Personally, I think it’s a whole lot grosser to be inserting toxic chemicals into your female bits, than these clean all natural products.
RACHEL SCHWARTZMAN is a naturopathic doctor in the St. Clair West neighbourhood. She is the co-owner of West End Naturopathic Doulas, a naturopathic collective that supports pregnant women and partners with the birth of their babies. Westenddoulas.com