There are environmental pollutants and toxins everywhere these days, this is not news to anyone who pays attention. What is alarming, however, is how completely toxic materials have infiltrated just about every facet of our daily lives, including the seemingly innocuous items we buy.
Recently, the beloved seltzer brand LaCroix was just hit with a class-action lawsuit over allegedly including ingredients in their seltzer water which can also be found in roach poison. If that’s not shocking enough, the Center for Environmental Health in California recently uncovered dangerous levels of the metal cadmium in numerous articles of jewelry sold by such chain stores as Burlington Coat Factory, Nordstrom Rack, Ross and Walgreens.
The levels of cadmium in the jewelry were not unsubstantial either. Cadmium levels allowed by law in children’s jewelry are about 0.03%, the amounts unearthed by the recent investigation were between 40-100%. That much cadmium exposure, especially on a daily basis through jewelry which is regularly worn, can have dire health consequences. Although there aren’t stringent regulations against cadmium content in jewelry intended for adults, cadmium content is never something you want in your jewelry.
Breathing in cadmium or ingesting it can lead to osteoporosis and kidney disease and is on California’s Proposition 65 list of toxic and cancer-causing chemicals. Something this dangerous clearly has no place in anything that people use regularly, but as with most things, manufacturers are more concerned with cutting costs than consumer health and cadmium is a metal alloy which is both inexpensive and versatile.
It’s disconcerting to think that something so widely available is so poisonous, but this should serve as a wake-up call to consumers who are used to spending money on products without knowing where they’re sourced or what dangers may be lurking beneath the surface.
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