Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Review: Healthy Child Healthy World

Book review time! I finally finished "Healthy Child, Healthy World: Creating a Cleaner, Greener, Safer Home" by Christopher Gavigan (with contributions by a bunch of celebrities). I want to start by saying that while this book scared the crap out of me and made me want to throw away everything in my house and buy all organic...I also found it to be incredibly informative, helpful and eye-opening. The book starts with a forward by Meryl Streep discussing the controversy behind Alar, the chemical that was once used on apples and other fruits to enhance growth and regulate color. She explains how it was used without regulation for many years (but not without protest) until a study was finally conducted on children and infants. The study PROVED what people had been suspecting for years, which is that Alar is incredibly hazardous to children. What this shows us is that maybe all the hype about chemicals in our drinking water, household cleaners, food, carpeting, etc. isn't just based on rumors and speculation. Perhaps these things do contribute to the health problems that so many children are facing these days. And if protecting our kids from potentially harmful chemicals isn't reason enough to buy into a greener lifestyle, perhaps protecting the planet is. And once we accept responsibility and decide to make these important changes, we are faced with a big question: Where do we begin?
As I said in a previous post, the key is to start small. The book lists all kinds of ways to live a cleaner, greener, safer lifestyle. Some things are easy to change. For example, start making everyone take off their shoes before entering your house. Shoes track in all kinds of dirt, bacteria, feces and other totally disgusting stuff. Why track that all over a house where a child plays? Another easy fix is to purchase a water filter. This can be as easy as a tap mounted filter, or an entire home system. Either way...the key is to drink safer water. Of course, the book also lists many things that are not so easy. They suggest replacing all carpet with organic bamboo flooring. Now come on...who has the means to rip out an entire house of carpeting and tile and replace it with expensive organic flooring? And personally, I can't imagine getting cozy in a house full of hard, wood floors. But I guess that is just me. I would rather invest in a good vacume and a steam cleaner...both with a HEPA filter of course :-)
I could honestly go on and on about all the great tips this book has to offer (even the over-the-top tips that no one can afford). And if there is one reason to go out and buy this book...it is for the list of Healthy Resources in the back. They list healthy choices for baby clothing, food, household cleaners, beauty products, toys, bedding, etc. And the best part is that they list brand name products that you can actually find at the grocery store and Target like Aveeno products, Method products, Earth's Best products, etc. But they also list some great websites for other brands that you can't find every where. I have included a few of my favorites under my "Green Websites" tab. Oh, and I am also excited that they list Shaklee "Get Clean" products. Yet another reason why I am happy I use and distribute them :-)
So in conclusion, I would highly recommend this book to anyone who is interested in "going green" for their kids...and their planet. It was easy to read and offered a TON of great resources. But be careful...this book has the potential to turn you into a green freak. I know I am on my way to becoming one :-)

1 comment:

  1. I like the leave your shoes off suggestion! I want to and don't want to read the book. I am playing the "what I don't know can't hurt me..." haha. No, but seriously these are great ideas and things that I am definitly thinking more and more about. I "might" pick up the book!

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