A group of more than 200 scientists and medical professionals has issued a consensus statement in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives urging that antimicrobial chemicals like triclosan and triclocarban should not be used in consumer products. The experts say that these substances offer no health benefits and are actually causing health and environmental harm.
According to the FDA, approximately three-quarters of all antibiotics used in the U.S. are fed to livestock for non-therapeutic purposes. This routine administration of antibiotics promotes the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, which can spread to animals and humans. And as antibiotic-resistant bacteria spreads, medicines used to treat human diseases can become less effective. Antibiotic resistant infections kill 90,000 Americans each year.
Augmenting food with preservatives is not a recent practice. For thousands of years, we have canned fruits with sugar, preserved meats with salt, and pickled vegetables so that they could keep in hot humid environments.
Government and private organizations have long been encouraging us to eat healthier diets. We have seen food pyramid charts for decades and the “5 a day” campaign has boosted our consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables.
The carefree nature of Halloween has made the holiday a favorite among children and the young-at-heart. It’s a day when fantasy can be indulged. Collectively, Americans spend billions of dollars adorning stoops with Jack-o-Lanterns, filling candy bowls with treats, and transforming themselves into zombies, witches, and other creations.