Hundreds of chemicals have been detected in unborn babies. Tens of thousands of chemicals going into food, water, and health products remain untested for safety. Now more than ever, it's important to cut out the toxins invading our lives.
Thankfully, someone stepped up to help make that easy for us! Health-conscious people have banded together and are taking a stance. And with numbers about harmful chemicals like the above, it's no wonder the EWG has stepped into action.
What is the EWG?
This is more of a who question.
The EWG is the Environmental Working Group. This passionate group began with Ken Cook. He banded together with a team of chemists, epidemiologists, and toxicologists to rate and research the safety of the chemicals surrounding us in daily life. Above all, they desire to help others take advantage of their ratings to create healthier lives. As they put it, their "mission is to empower people to live healthier lives in a healthier environment."
The EWG is a non-profit organization, careful to be clear that their advocacy methodology stands to better the world for all.
They've gathered metrics on everything from responsible farming and manufacturing techniques to rating over 80,000 products on their safety for our usage, helping build conservation programs to course-correct the damage done to the planet's health and our own.
Why They Formed and the Difference it's Making
Although there are plenty of people out in the world who care about the planet's health, few groups have gone as far as the EWG in their multi-decade mission to expose health issues to the public. They help educate, perform groundbreaking research, and push authorities in Washington DC to adjust health regulations. Why?
The Danger in Drinking Water
Water may have once been a clean substance to drink from the tap. But the days of unaltered water have long gone. Dozens of additives are in both tap and bottled water, possibly more.
Bottled water can also cost more water to make the plastic bottle itself than the amount it contains. It often leaves microplastics seeping into the water when exposed to the sun or sitting for some time (the longer, the worse it is). But tap isn't much better.
Both contain harmful bacteria and chemicals.
Tap water, as the EWG reports, continues to grow contaminated with toxic materials known as PFAS. PFAS stands for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (like perfluorooctanoic acid). These are harmful chemicals used as an industrial surfactant, seeping into our water from products like furniture, personal care products, and more.
It's hard to know where and how to get clean water. Your tap water might be contaminated. One thing to do is purchase a filter. Another is to check with the Environmental Working Group.
The EWG rates water sources on their transparency with process and source. They clarify which water is pure and safe versus toxic (containing things like PFAS and carcinogens). Without their help, many would simply keep on drinking toxic substances every day.
Harmful Farming Secrets
Many foods are genetically modified and sprayed with toxic chemicals (pesticides). The EWG is supporting a law forcing companies to disclose the status of their GMO foods. They've also continued to expose a loophole in the law that could exempt thousands of foods from being disclosed as GMO products. All this background work to help us make healthier decisions in purchasing food, well, they have a hand in it.
The industrial agriculture controversy isn't new. But with farming issues, the EWG has taken action. They have exposed harmful farming practices, putting both the consumer at risk as well as the worker who is even more exposed.
While they are working toward helping people cut down exposure to pesticides and such, they also help the consumers. They not only rated foods but also offered a couple of PDFs highlighting which foods they consider "dirty" and "clean." (The "Clean Fifteen" and "Dirty Dozen" cheat sheets.) That way anyone can know which pesticides they put themselves at risk to when at the grocery store.
Harmful Chemicals in Household Products
Now, we know many household cleaners are toxic. They cause serious damage. And it's not just the bleaches under the sink but the ones we put in our hair, on our skin (moisturizers and sunscreen), and in our mouths (toothpaste).
Toothpaste has severe effects on the oral microbiome. It either helps balance the microbiome or leads to whole-body inflammation and possibly even more serious issues. Shampoo can ruin your hair, thinning it until nothing is left. Even causing hormonal issues with the use of dyes, sulfates, and more.
The EWG has even taken a look into the health of diapers. They saw that with each new-born using thousands of diapers just in their first year, it needed to be investigated whether or not the materials were safe for their health.
Beyond that, they've looked at all kinds of home issues...even linking some US policies to continually allowing for more exposure to flame retardant chemicals, not less.
The EWG even highlights a few alarming stats for cosmetics. They note that 29 ingredients banned for cosmetics in Canada are used in the US, 15 banned in Europe, and dozens of ingredients banned for hair dyes are used in the US and North America.
The EWG Rating (What it Means)
The exposure to harmful chemicals for Americans is high. One of the best ways to cut back on the toxins in our lives is to look for certifications. Big marks like theirs help us know whether a product is safe or not right away. And the USDA green mark isn't the only one that matters on products.
When the EWG rates product safety and ingredients, they compare it to their database on the studies on related health issues. The only way to get a verified mark is to have no chemicals they deem as concerning. It's a strict standard, taking your health seriously.
When you see the EWG mark, you know you can trust the product.
Our Decision With the EWG
On our ingredients page, you'll see a number under the EWG section. That number represents a hazard scale. Each of our ingredients is rated.
Like the EWG, we care about transparency. We want natural ingredients to drive our health, not synthetic and dangerous toxins. All of our ingredients are rated in their "skin deep database."
At Wellnesse, our founder has spent over a decade formulating recipes of natural ingredients safe for you, safe for the planet, and more effective than conventional methods.
Katie set out to do something big - to help us all band together to make this toxic world into a healthier place for our kids to grow up in.
As a part of the Wellnesse community, we can all take part in that.
By tossing the toxic products in our homes and replacing them with natural alternatives, we can reclaim health for the world one home at a time. And there is no better time.
Now, with all our ingredients marked by the database, showing their health ratings, we can move toward a cleaner planet with healthier people on it.
Being backed by the EWG's clear evaluations means that we have clear steps forward to that bright future.
Our Whitening Toothpaste balances the oral microbiome, cleaning your teeth and helping them grow stronger and whiter naturally. Our haircare collections help boost hair growth, bolstering it rather than thinning it out and causing scalp issues. Our all-natural ingredient list is safe and beneficial for you and the world. Join us in moving toward a healthier planet with healthier families.
You can also become a subscriber to EWG for more up-to-date info on the movement of world health issues.
The Environmental Working Group. Retrieved 2020, December 31. https://www.ewg.org/