This link floated into my monkeysphere today: The top 12 cancer causing products in the average home. Included:
Among many other cancer causing products commonly found in the home, this dirty dozen list has made it to the Hall of Shame. The Cancer Prevention Coalition (CPC) and Ralph Nader have released a “Dirty Dozen” list of consumer products used in most American homes, and manufactured by giant U.S. corporations.
The “Dirty Dozen” products contain a wide-range of carcinogenic and other toxic ingredients and contaminants to which most of us are exposed daily.
I would be surprised if anyone reading this doesn't have at least one item on that list in your house (I'm guilty of brushing my teeth with toothpaste). My issue is threefold:
1) In most of these cases, the cancerous chemicals are unlabeled, meaning I have to take it on the faith of Smartklean's scientists that they're in here.
2) While I am no chemist, I am familiar with a few of the items on their list, and some of their claims are either pretty misleading or just patently false. Saccharine, for example, *can* cause cancer. In rats. If you give them an astonishingly high amount every day. In other words, it's just about as deadly as water (and MUCH less deadly than sugar). Flouride, which this list has as a "potential carcinogen" isn't. The ignorant fear of flouride is some weird holdover where people were scared about the government putting "stuff they didn't understand" in the water supply. The worst thing flouride does is slightly stain the teeth of young children. The best thing it does is protect your teeth which only have about a 35 year lifespan.
The point is -- if a non chemist can easily point to two obvious examples of falsehood in the article, it really weakens the rest of the article. If someone says that "flouride is bad" and I know it isn't, and then also says "Talc is bad," I'm more apt to not believe her.
3) This blog is hosted by a web site that sells alternatives to some of the products mentioned. How convenient. Now, I'm not saying that a corporation selling alternatives to chemical products is by definition going to lie about the danger of its competitors, I will approach it with a cautious eye.
How do people here react to these lists? Does the paranoia they inspire help or hurt what may otherwise be a legitimate point? Am I making a mistake by ignoring their warning and using Lysol to clean up counters?