Healthy Child Healthy World, one of my favorite and most trusted sources, has just released an invaluable resource to help parents and other adults keep children safe from toxins: Easy Steps for a Healthy & Safe Nursery. This interactive eBook is 40+ pages and packed with user-friendly information and tips.
I love that the Easy Steps eBook begins with a section entitled "How to Use This Guide" which directly addresses the toxic information overload that so many parents encounter when they first discover the number of toxins in our everyday environment. Next, the eBook briefly discusses why we need to pay attention to chemicals in the environment, including a discussion of childhood diseases that are on the rise -- a great section to share with partners and other caregivers who might need a little convincing that baby products can be unsafe.
The bulk of this eBook, though, is all about solutions. Here are some features you'll find within Easy Steps for a Healthy & Safe Nursery:
- 3 Rules to Remember: simple guiding principles that can help new parents save money and avoid toxic chemicals while navigating the crazy world of baby products
- Furniture and Decor section, including how to make do with a conventional mattress if you can't afford a more natural one
- Baby Care section, including easy DIY recipes for baby care products like shampoo, soap, and lotion
- Baby Gear section, including tips for assessing the safety of second-hand baby gear
- How to green your diaper bag
- 10-minute Makeover: 3 easy and free ways to make your baby's nursery a healthier environment
- Additional Resources: books, apps, and websites
- Condensed version of guide available as handy brochure (download here)
I really like that this guide focuses on simple, inexpensive, doable steps: perfect for busy, sleep-deprived parents. I also believe any shade-of-green parent could find something useful in this guide because it manages to be quite comprehensive. I would only add two small suggestions. First, I wish the guide had plugged cloth diapers a little bit more! While the guide addresses diapers and diaper care, it focuses on disposable diapers. I get this, because 90% of parents use disposables, but cloth diapers are so inexpensive (esp. compared to the "greener" disposables) and really quite easy. I say this as someone who used disposables for a year before switching. Second, the guide recommends buying an organic or Greenguard certified mattress if possible. I would simply add that while Greenguard certification is highly meaningful and an excellent indication of safety, even if a mattress contains organic materials (organic cotton, for example) and claims to be "organic," it might contain other undesirable materials or chemical treatments. So always find out exactly what your crib mattress is made of. Read more about crib mattresses here.
This Easy Steps for a Healthy & Safe Nursery eBook is part of Healthy Child's Healthy Nursery Toolkit, which also includes a brochure (download here), as well as an infographic and webinar (coming soon). Healthy Child today also released a new report titled "The Toxic Takeover of Baby Nurseries: Chemicals of Concern Found in Almost Every Common Product and Furnishing." The report focuses on the links between early exposure to chemicals in everyday household products and childhood diseases and behavioral disorders.
I highly recommend Easy Steps for a Healthy & Safe Nursery, particularly for expectant or new parents.
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Quiz: Are Cloth Diapers Right for You?
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