Creating a Non-Toxic Household

Text contributed by Lynn Tondat Ruggeri, Ph.D. and Laura Costa, Ph.D. from their book Safer for Your Baby: A Guide to Living Better with Fewer Chemicals

“Unlike any other time in human history, we are living in a world filled with hundreds of thousands of man-made chemicals. With over 1,000 new chemicals introduced each year into our environment and food chain, the potential for harm is staggering.

In an attempt to keep the public informed, there is a constant barrage from the media about the dangers of chemicals and additives in seemingly everything. This includes the foods we eat, the products we put on our skin, cleaning products, insect repellants, carpeting, and even plastic baby bottles.

All humans are susceptible to harm from chemicals, but children are even more vulnerable to harmful chemicals than most adults:

  • A child’s smaller size and weight results in a higher dose (amount of chemical per body weight) compared to an adult.
  • A child is more vulnerable because body systems such as the nervous, immune and hormonal systems are in critical stages of development. Starting even in the first trimester of pregnancy, exposure to toxins during sensitive developmental stages has been shown to have lifelong health consequences.
  • The liver is the most important organ for removing toxins from the blood. However, a child is more vulnerable to toxins because his or her liver is not yet fully mature and is incapable of functioning as well as an adult’s liver.”

NotJustSkin recommends Safer for Your Baby: A Guide to Living Better with Fewer Chemicals by Drs. Ruggeri and Costa as well as the resources below for their clarity, completeness of research, and depth of explanation on the topic of chemical safety for children and adults. Fortunately, there are choices for food, cleaning products, toys and furniture that are safer for you and your children. These resources will help you understand and find the healthiest options.


  • “SAFER FOR YOUR BABY: A Guide To Living Better with Fewer Chemicals” by Lynn Tondat Ruggeri, Ph.D. and Laura Costa, Ph.D. This booklet:
    • Provides simple ways to protect you and your family from harmful chemicals commonly found in personal care products, food, cleaners, toys, pesticides, decor and more.
    • Is designed for new and expecting parents, but is valuable for anyone who wants to live a healthier life.
    • Can help make a difference for a lifetime. Join us in making that difference for yourself and your family now and for generations to come.
  • The Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Database is detailed, ingredient-by-ingredient safety guide to cosmetics and personal care products.
  • An organization of families and professionals founded dedicated to helping children and adults choose diets that avoid additives for better behavior, learning and health, and to generating public awareness of the potential role of foods and synthetic additives in behavior, learning and health problems.
  • Chemical Body Burden Before we are even born, synthetic chemicals and heavy metals of all kinds begin building up in our bodies.This chemical “body burden” is the focus of the information you will find on this web site.
  • Developmental neurotoxicity of industrial chemicals, a technical review article including a large number of chemicals and known effects.