The previous Great NEWS post shared New Year, New You Part 9: Magic Moments Momentum and today we begin our Health Hazards alert series with Top Ten Yard Health Hazards. How much do you know about the green space, lawn and yard health hazards to you and your family? Today we will learn about the Top Ten Yard Health Hazards that lurk in the bushes, flowers, grass, shrubs and trees when we are spending time outdoors.
This new Health Hazards series will offer clear, concise and compelling information to help you be better prepared to protect your self and family. What we don’t know can harm us and even kill us slowly. This series will provide valuable information and insights on how to avoid and minimize these health risks with simple strategies and smart suggestions. In less than 2 minutes a week you will discover serious health risks and understand the danger while also learning what action steps and healthy habits to implement.
This article is being written after experiencing a record breaking cold winter and knowing that spring is just around the corner. Many people have been dealing with cloudy days, cold, ice, rain, snow and winds and they look forward to the chance of sunny and warmer days ahead. They are busy planning and preparing for landscaping, picnics and yard projects. Even if you live in a warmer climate many of these same health hazards are a concern for you.
When adults, children or pets spend time breathing, playing or walking on or near treated green spaces and yards they are being exposed to many harmful chemicals and compounds.
Top Ten Yard Health Hazards
1. Fertilizers made from fossil fuels are a double trouble risk to your family, pets and the environment at the same time. Synthetic fertilizers have many caustic and dangerous chemicals that can burn your eyes, nose and penetrate your skin. They cause your yard to be artificially stimulated to grow faster which stresses the plants and demands more water. Most chemicals in fertilizers harm the soil and earth worms. Fertilizers also end up polluting the lakes, rivers, oceans, streams and water table and causes excess algae blooms that can kill fish and wildlife. There is a massive dead zone where the Mississippi River dumps fertilizers into the Gulf of Mexico. Compost teas, mulching, native plant landscaping and probiotic teas are natural alternatives.
2. Weed and Feed yard products are even worse because they also contain chemicals to kill weeds and this makes them more toxic to you and the environment. Compost tea, mulching, plant essential oils and probiotic teas are natural alternatives.
3. Herbicides like Roundup are used to kill grass and weeds by being sprayed on crops, sidewalks, soils, streets and structures. It ends up in the air, food, soil and water. These are organophosphates and almost identical to toxic Agent Orange. They are known to cause birth defects, cancer and genetic damage. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says they are extremely toxic to bees, humans and wildlife. Google Agent Orange in Viet Nam to see the hazards to humans.
4. Fungicides, insecticides and pesticides from the various plant nurseries and stores are organophosphates and nerve agents and very similar to Agent Orange. The same EPA warning applies. Compost tea, mulching, plant essential oils and probiotic teas are natural alternatives.
5. Lawn care and treatment service companies often spray a combination of weed and feed with fungicides and insecticides. The same EPA warning applies.
6. Pest Control companies usually spray toxic insecticides and pesticides around the inside and outside of a home. People and pets end up breathing it or touching without even knowing it. It can cause asthma, cancer and genetic damage. There are natural alternatives made from the earth or plant compounds. Boric acid, diatomaceous earth and essential oils (citronella, marigold, neem, orange) are examples for natural pest control.
7. Home building materials, rail road ties and treated lumber are additional sources of toxic compounds that can damage your health and leach into the soil. Look for natural and safer alternatives.
8. Some top soil sold in bags or bulk may come from sewage sludge at waste water treatment plants and contain harmful chemicals and compounds. These contaminants usually include dangerous chemicals, cleaners, heavy metals, hormones, industrial waste, Over the Counter medicines (OTC), plastics, prescription medications and synthetic antibiotics. Just imagine all the toxic things that go down the drain and sewer and you can imagine the risk of this ending up on a garden, yard or farm where people, pets or plants could come in contact with it. Imagine eating plants fertilized with it.
9. Chemical dumps, runoff and spills are a serious health hazard in many areas. Many chemical facilities and industrial complexes have accidentally or intentionally dumped or released toxic chemicals into the air, soil or water and these compounds can end up on our green spaces and yards. Many neighborhoods and parks in cities are on land that where exposed to hazardous chemicals with a long toxicity life.
10. Sprinklers are an indirect health hazard because they cause people to over water parks and yards which depletes clean water sources needed for human consumption. Then people must fertilize and mow more often which causes more environmental harm. They also spray chlorine and fluoride which are toxic to people and pets. Most golf courses for example use massive amounts of chemicals, fertilizers and water which impact the people and plants on and around them. This money would be better used for healthy habits and organic foods. Home swimming pools are also a health hazard because of the toxic chemicals used to keep the pool clean and water free of algae. Community salt water pools are a better choice and reduce the chemical and water usage.
What many people do not realize is that walking and talking in a well manicured neighborhood or park can actually be a health hazard. It often exposes people to higher levels of toxic chemicals and compounds that can cause breathing issues, cancer and genetic damage.
Learn about the toxic chemicals and compounds that are sold or used in your area and take action to prevent all the toxic ones you can. Boycott toxic products only if you really care about your health and that of your family and friends. If you thing there is a chance of toxic chemical exposure find some clay powder to apply to the area to help neutralize it.
Meet and talk with your city leaders, community and neighbors to be sure your environment is as natural and safe as possible. There are always numerous choices and often times the toxic one that looks cheaper initially is actually the most expensive one in the long run. Is a $20.00 dollar herbicide or insecticide worth a $200,000.00 medical bill or even death?
This Great NEWS post shared the Top Ten Yard Health Hazards to help stop the toxic tsunami of dangerous chemicals that is occurring and start the safe and sustainable use of natural green space, landscaping, parks and yard care. The healthy habits we choose each day will determine how happy, healthy and in harmony we live. Remember we can not control the world around us…we can only control what we do, say and think to be a shining example of possibilities and potential. This Top Ten Yard Health Hazards post is offered to help us do our part to protect the people, plants and planet.
What is your current Gap?
What areas in your environment are toxic and would benefit from some natural alternatives?
Mastery Action Plan (MAP)
What mastery action plans will help you reduce your risk and toxic environmental burden? Place some symbols on your Life MAP to remind you about reduce, reject, recycle, repair, repurpose and replace unhealthy options with healthier ones.
Call to Action:
What comments, commitments or concerns come to mind regarding your green spaces, parks or yards? What new resources will help you avoid the health hazards and begin healthy habits?
Next week the Great NEWS blog will share:
Beauty Salon Health Hazards
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