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6 Cautions about Pesticides and Herbicides

6 Cautions about Pesticides and Herbicides

When you spray pesticides to kill garden or household critters, douse your lawn with chemical herbicides, or spray your dog for fleas, you’re also exposing your kids (and yourself) to these toxins. Think about it: These concoctions are designed to kill insects and weeds. Even if you use them as directed, they still have the potential to cause a wide range of health problems in people because of their toxicity. Here are six cautions and alarming thoughts:

1. No one guarantees the safety of pesticides. Just because a product is registered with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) doesn’t mean it’s safe.

2. Pesticides have been traditionally treated as “innocent until proven guilty” by regulatory authorities. A generation ago, pesticides were considered to be relatively safe and effective chemicals that produced significant benefits to society.

3. Many older pesticides have not been thoroughly tested by today’s standards. These pesticides are still commonly used even thought complete testing of these older pesticides will take at least another 10 years.

4. Most pesticides in use today have not been tested for their health effects on children. This is a major problem. Recent scientific studies involving laboratory animals show that many pesticides damage the developing brain and nervous system.

5. Certain types of pesticides mimic hormones. Scientists have discovered that some pesticides have the ability to mimic or compete with hormones (the chemicals in our body that trigger development and functioning.

6. Many herbicides are know, probable, or suspected carcinogens (cancer-causing chemicals).

Read more: Nature, Health & Safety, Natural Pest Control

Adapted from Raising Healthy Children in a Toxic World, by Philip J. Landrigan, M.D., Herbert L. Needleman, M.D., and Mary Landrigan, M.P.A. Copyright (c) 2001 by Philip J. Landrigan, M.D., Herbert L. Needleman, M.D., and Mary Landrigan, M.P.A. Reprinted by permission of Rodale Press.
Adapted from Raising Healthy Children in a Toxic World, by Philip J. Landrigan, M.D., Herbert L. Needleman, M.D., and Mary Landrigan, M.P.A. (Rodale Press, 2001).

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Annie B. Bond

Annie is a renowned expert in non-toxic and green living. She was named one of the top 20 environmental leaders by Body and Soul Magazine and "the foremost expert on green living." - Body & Soul Magazine, 2009. Learn Annie's latest eco-friendly news on, a website dedicated to healthy and green living.

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+ add your own
2:17PM PDT on Sep 24, 2012


4:32PM PDT on Sep 13, 2012

Thank you for sharing.

4:31PM PDT on Sep 13, 2012

Thank you for sharing.

12:28PM PDT on May 16, 2012

Thank you

8:43PM PDT on May 2, 2012

thank you for this article

12:09PM PDT on May 2, 2012

Interesting how it is so difficult for Americans to realize that poison POISONS THINGS!!! Spreading poisons around your home and yard is insane. What in the world are they thinking?

6:04AM PDT on May 2, 2012

Thanks for the article.

5:21AM PDT on Apr 21, 2012

I don't use pesticides........

1:39AM PST on Feb 24, 2011

People should be more careful using weed killer and realize the serious effects it can have on people around them, I have been effected twice in the last year with "Pulmonary irritation from weed killer" I ended up in Hospital last year with it, and in the last few days again I was effected by it at work.

5:10AM PST on Dec 5, 2010

Thanks for the info.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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