Household Cleaning Products and Toxic Exposure

April 1, 2015

The chemicals and ingredients in many household cleaning products are widely documented to be hazardous to your health. To learn more, Eco News Network caught up with Zabada and its CEO and Founder Damian Pike who hopes to change the way we clean. We share findings from a recent study by the View More: Of Western Australia*in partnership with Zabada, which investigated the impact of household cleaning products on indoor environments.

“The term ‘green’ doesn’t necessarily mean that the product is healthy for you and the environment,” says Pike. “There are thousands of chemicals that have not been regulated by government bodies and thus can still be harmful to a consumers health.”

According to Pike and Zabada, we should all ridding chemicals from our homes and looking for alternative cleaning products and natural cleaning methods.

“Some green cleaners have also been known to react with other chemicals in your home as they can create harmful secondary pollutants. Due to this, it is important to read the label or alternatively switch to microfiber cleaning, a 21st century solution to eco-friendly cleaning” Pike adds.

Here are a few things that the University of Western Australia study revealed and that Zabada shared with Eco News Network.

  • One of the most popular disinfectant and antibacterial agents used in consumer cleaning products is triclosan, which has been shown to encourage antibiotic resistance, is suspected to be an endocrine system interrupter (including suppressing the thyroid hormone), and is a persistent environmental pollutant (has been found in the tissue of dolphins and influences their growth and development!)
  • Bleach accounted for over 37 percent of childhood injury from cleaning product exposure in the US between 1990 and 2006.
  • Exposure to ammonia has many known acute symptoms – including headache, dizziness and skin irritation. It has also been shown to cause long term damage to the lungs and throat.
  • There are more than 250,000 children treated for chemical exposure as the result of exposure to cleaning products in the home each year in the U.S.
  • The long term effects of chemical exposure from cleaning products are becoming more evident and are far reaching. It has been shown that long term exposure has been associated with cardiovascular hazards including heart stress, links made to chemical exposure from cleaning and breast cancer, and strong evidence that chemical sensitivity and allergic asthma are exacerbated by exposure to cleaning products.

Another recent study by Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, published in PLOS One on December 10, 2014, showed that repeated maternal prenatal exposure to phthalates is associated with deficits in intellectual development in seven-year-old children. Phthalates are commonly found in detergents and other household items. Too much exposure to other cleaning ingredients has been shown to cause acute symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, and skin and airway irritation.

Zabada_KitchenPack_V2According to Zabada, the company’s chemical-free cleaning cloths remove 99 percent of viruses and bacteria just by using water. The microfiber’s deep-cleaning shaves off and traps dirt, grease and bacteria deep in the fiber, and only releases them when the fibers are washed. The company says that Zabada fibers consistently outperform traditional cleaning methods and other microfibers on the market.

Want to know more? Check out Zabada at

Photos courtesy of Zabada.

* The University of Western Australia study was commissioned in partnership with Zabada. It was a literature based research investigation of household cleaning: comparisons between the use of conventional domestic chemical cleaning agents and fiber/microfiber-based cleaning methods by chemists Shannan J. Maisey and Sandra M. Saunders, Atmospheric and Environmental Chemistry Research Group School of Chemistry and Biochemistry of the University of Western Australia. Published in May 2013.

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