View Full Version : De-Plasticize Your Life: 3 Harmful Plastics to Avoid
10-16-11, 04:03 PM
By Alli Kingfisher and Kelly Lerner
In everything from our food-storage containers and shampoo bottles to our flooring and kids' toys, plastic is pervasive. But with a few simple steps, you can get harmful plastics out of your life for good.
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10-16-11, 04:05 PM
I wasn't sure where to post this, but it seems to fit better here than in "Environmental Toxins".
It would be interesting to share the steps we've taken to eliminate or reduce plastics in our homes. I'll bet each of us has a tip somebody else hasn't thought of!
10-16-11, 06:27 PM
Getting rid of processed food, not buying water in plastic bottles (got a water filter), not drinking soda, and not buying fast food/meals out really cut down on the amount of plastic.
I also got a shower curtain that didn't need a plastic liner — the fumes off the liners would give me terrible headaches.
10-16-11, 07:45 PM
Almost the only plastics in my home are #2, polypropylene, which although from petrochemicals is apparently the safest plastic, and #4 and 5, the polyethylenes. These 3 have not been shown to leach anything...doesn't mean they don't, just that it hasn't been found. I will admit to occasional use of baggies because I prepare a very large meatloaf, a whole chicken etc at one time and freeze. To freeze liquids, I use polypropylene containers. #1, PET was found to leach antimony a few years ago although you usually still see it on the "safe" lists. It leaches when exposed to high temperatures and when reused often. BEWARE of all the new stuff out there screaming BPA FREE!!! 99% of them are a farce. They removed the BPA but substituted similar chemicals that just happen to also be estrogenic so they haven't done a thing to lower toxicity. If you see the #7 or NO recycling symbol, then avoid the product completely. So, what I've done:
1. As above switched to safest plastics
2. I try to use mason jars for just about all the home made condiments etc and of course, all my fermenting. I have had ZERO luck freezing anything in them though. No matter how cool and how much room I leave in the jar, they break in the freezer.
3. I have a distiller that I used in winter to avoid plastic water bottles. However I could not use it about 8 months of the year because it produces a tremendous amount of heat. Believe it or now, the distiller raised my power bill MORE than the cost of equivalent gallons of water. So, I recently bought a Big Berkey filter with fluoride filters. It is gravity fed so I've eliminated both plastic and power!
4. Although I've read some unfavorable things about silicone, especially the coloring agents, I have switched most cooking utensils to silicone figuring they are probably safer than the other stuff and are not in contact with food for any length of time.
5. I have to admit I use polypropylene reusable water bottles because, the glass ones are way way way too expensive and not big enough and the biggest reason, they are just too heavy for me to carry around. Stainless steel has nickel which I'm allergic to (although supposedly it won't leach with just water) and can't find any big enough anyway.
6. I have quite a collection of canvas shopping bags so the only time I get plastic bags at the grocery store is to put meat in and when I need some for trash.
7. I've substituted stainless steel mixing bowls for all the plastic ones. The bigger glass ones are just too heavy and I've broken a few, wasting a lot of food and hurting my feet, lol. Nothing stays in the SS bowls long enough to really get nickel. I don't use them to store anything.
8. I use glass pitchers for tea, water kefir etc.
9. Like Reesacat, I have a cloth shower curtain and cloth liner.
10. I've turned down the guilt and paranoid meter so that, when I have to use plastic I don't fret about it knowing I'm doing the best I, personally, can :)
10-16-11, 08:37 PM
I have had success freezing food in glass when I use a wide container with a low top though unfortunately any container I have found fitting this description has a plastic top.
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