Great. My family is part of a chemical experiment.

Via Lynn Hasselberger
on Aug 9, 2010
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Do you know what toxins are in your food, water and… blood?

We’re exposed to chemicals every day. Babies are born pre-polluted with hundreds of them:

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) tested the umbilical cord blood of 10 newborn babies and found nearly 300 chemicals, including BPA, fire retardants, lead, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and pesticides that were banned more than 30 years ago.

Does this make us all part of some crazy chemical experiment? How can we keep ourselves and our families healthy and safe?

Take a look at Toxic Soup. This documentary film shares the story of everyday folks fighting to keep their water, air and blood (yes, blood) safe from pollution. Check out this clip:

And another film, Unacceptable Levels

Some Facts You May Not Want To Know…

Every day in America a total of 42 billion pounds of chemicals are produced or imported for commercial and industrial uses. Of that, over 62,000 chemicals were “grandfathered” into commerce as part of the Toxic Substances Control Act without testing their impact on public health or the environment.

Currently, the government must prove that a chemical is harmful before it can be withdrawn from the market, a costly and time-consuming process that the EPA bears alone.

“Consequently, the EPA has used its authority to require testing for fewer than 200 of the 62,000 chemicals in commerce,” reports John Stephenson of the Government Accountability Office.

What chemicals are pumping through my veins? What can I do about it?

Some people I know say whatever our destiny is, is. Or that God has control of the situation. I say I’m not going to step in front of a fast moving truck. I’ll avoid toxic chemicals when I can. How? By choosing non-toxic household products, safe cosmetics (luckily I don’t wear much make-up, but this applies to skin care products, shampoos, soap, etc.), non-processed foods and not smoking, to name a just few.

Take action for safe chemicals…

Sign EWG’s kids safe chemicals act petition to demand that Congress take action to make chemicals in consumer products kid-safe.

Learn more about Toxic Soup…

Learn more about Unacceptable Levels…

More eye-opening films:

What are your fave eco docu films?

Have you ever been abducted by aliens? (just kidding).


About Lynn Hasselberger

Lynn Hasselberger is co-founder of GDGD Radio; The Green Divas Managing Editor; and Producer of The Green Divas Radio Show. She's also a mom, writer and award-winning cat-herder who lives in Chicagoland. Sunrises, running, yoga, lead-free chocolate and comedy are just a few of her fave things. In her rare moments of spare time, she blogs at and A treehugger and social media addict, you'll most likely find Lynn on twitter (@LynnHasselbrgr @GreenDivaLynn & @myEARTH360), instagram and facebook. She hopes to make the world a better place, have more fun, re-develop her math skills and overcome her fear of public speaking. Like her writing? Subscribe to her posts.


8 Responses to “Great. My family is part of a chemical experiment.”

  1. Ben Ralston says:

    Hi Lynn,

    Interesting and very well researched article!

    I live in Slovenia, where there are many vineyards – ALL those growing their own vines spray them with chemicals. You wouldn’t believe how much some of them spray – one guy I know sprays once a week.

    It’s sad to say, but those of us who are awake, even just a little bit, to the dangers of man-made chemical pollution are in a minority.

    Love, Ben

  2. chezsven says:

    I'm afraid Ben is right. I go around, doing my errands, asking cashiers if they know there is BPA in the receipts. "What is BPA?" they say. I suggest to cashiers that they ask if people want a plastic bag. I went shopping and was wondering what to buy that did not have toxins in it. You are so right that we have all become guinea pigs. The only way to do something about it is to protest, and become "health activists" and "carcinogen abolitionists." People will catch on soon enough. We need to help them put 2 and 2 together. Toxic chemicals cause cancer, as the Presidential Cancer Panel declared in other words. Instead of focusing on research for a cure for cancer, lets regulate the toxic chemicals that are causing it. I write about this in my blog.

    You asked about documentaries. I watched Blue Gold and A Chemical Reaction. I am working with Swedish director Stefan Jarl to bring his new film Submission to an American audience.

    We are fighting a war here on Cape Cod, where I live, because the utility company wants to spray up to five herbicides under the power lines.

    We cannot give up. We must support each other. Thanks for all that you do.

    It makes me really angry when I think about what the chemical industry has managed to get away with …. murder!

  3. Lynn Hasselberger says:

    Hi, Ben!

    Glad you like the article. When I was about 9 we moved from a busy street out into the "wholesome" countryside. We thought it was fun to run outside when the crop dusters came. We'd stand there as they went overhead before swooping back around to the field across the road. Not sure quite how that impacted me, although I wasn't able to conceive children. The good news in that: I have a WONDERFUL son who we adopted. He is the one who inspires me to raise awareness.


  4. Lynn Hasselberger says:

    Haven't seen Chemical Reaction yet, but its on my list. Why do they want to spray herbicides–to make it easier to access the powerlines?!

    I know many people who just don't want to know. Somehow they think that will make their lives easier. So I keep screaming from the rooftops.

    I'll check out your blog…


  5. Lynn Hasselberger says:

    What's the link to your blog?

  6. chezsven says:

    The blog is called Chezsven, Wellfleet Today.

    I write about living on Cape Cod and being a green innkeeper.

    Federal law requires removal of vegetation. MA law allows herbicides. The utility company has fixated on herbicides. I documented our efforts last summer and fall until I realized they were reading, so I no longer mention their name in my posts.

  7. […] grains and vegetables are processed to make packaged foods. These foods are often preserved with chemical additives and fillers that can make any minerals they still contain impossible to […]

  8. Jack says:

    Thanks for this, Lynn…another docu to watch…2 of my favorites that are not on your list:

    Food, Inc.
    The 11th Hour