Have you ever heard the term “greenwashing”? Probably not, but chances are you are mislead by greenwashing on a daily basis. Every time you go into a supermarket or big box store to purchase cleaning products, gardening products and even personal care products you are likely looking at a whole lot of greenwashing. You will even find greenwashing in food products.
So what is greenwashing? Greenwashing is a spin on the term whitewashing. It is a form of deceptive marketing that leads consumers to believe that a product they are purchasing is actually safe for the environment or that it is environmentally friendly, meaning it is good for you. Companies will in fact spend a substantial amount of funds on advertisements that make their products “appear” eco-friendly.
Companies have learned that doing good for the planet is a good thing. They have also learned that making their products look as if they are actually “healthy” for not only our environment but for your newborn is good for profits.
With a twist of wording on labeling, products appear as if they are environmentally conscience and safe.
There are so many products out there “claiming” to be natural, pure, eco-friendly and even organic. You will see products with green leaves, green grass, fresh herbs, fresh fruits like lemons or oranges, or wild flowers like lavender, all intended to make us think of nature.
The problem is, that unless a product carries the USDA Certified Organic Label, the USDA has no authority to regulate these product claims. The more you and I wise up about the need to remove toxins from our lives, the more these companies will greenwash in an effort to redeem themselves and keep those profits flowing.
A study done showed that the majority of environmental claims found on products were at the very least misleading. It may be an effort on their part to try and convenience consumers that they truly have our health and wellness at heart.
So what can you and I do to ensure that we are not being mislead?
Words to Be Weary Of
- Allergy Friendly
- Dermatologist Tested
- Fragrance Free
- Derived from……
- Free of….
This is probably the easiest way to begin protecting yourself and your family. If you are not familiar with words in the ingredient list…..you might want to leave it on the shelf.
Examine the Claim
What does it mean when a product claims to be pure or organic? We have discussed this in an earlier post. It’s a real eye opener and sadly, it’s reality.
Seek Out Product Verification
It is a good think to look for verification certificates like the USDA Certified Organic label. In that case a product should be 100% organic.
There is also the OTCO label. Buyer beware here. This label indicates that they use organic ingredients in the making of their product. There may still be other ingredients you don’t want in your foods mixed in with the good stuff. Again go back and read the labels.
Personally I look for the USDA Certified Organic label first, accepting some of the other verifications ONLY if there is simply no other option or I make my own. It’s fun!
Even though living a truly natural lifestyle may be difficult it is so worth the effort you will put into it. If may all seem confusing to start with but soon you will become very aware and a very savvy health conscious shopper.
FDA Disclaimer: These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. The recommendations above are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent disease.
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