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Why Natural?

An Aussie Mum's Guide To Eco Friendly Babies: Why Natural?

Monday, February 7, 2011

Why Natural?

In a world riddled with consumerism and convenience items, the niche for naturally made, chemical free products- from food to bedding, nappies and clothing- is growing rapidly.  News stories and research papers that inform us of the toxic effect of pesticides on food, the dangers of chemical leaching plastic, the environmental impact of too much waste is opening our eyes to new solutions and modern takes on old products.

Take nappies for example.  Not only do disposable nappies cause a considerably large amount of non-biodegradable rubbish, the chemicals inside (the ones that keep baby 'nice and dry' and supposedly help prevent nappy rash) are actually causing skin irritation.  rather than just revert to the old terry squares though, mums now have access to a huge range of reusable nappies that fit like a disposable, come with flushable organic liners for easy cleaning and look like something made by a leading fashion designer.  Brands include Peapods , Cushie Tushies, Nurture Nappies and Itti Bitti. Or, when you want to use and lose, companies like Little Takas are now producing biodegradable disposables made from renewable materials.

The BPA debate has also found it's way to Australia.  For those not in the know, BPA (Bisphenol A) is a chemical present in many plastics- including some baby bottles- that can leach into food or liquid.  Though the BPA organisations and many plastics manufacturers tout it's safety, some countries are now banning it's use due to concerns over safety.  Though Australia has not made that step, they are more and more BPA-free products available including bottles, bowls, containers and drink bottles.  I'll go into this a lot more in another post, once I've manged to collate some info on safety/dangers of BPA.  

Of course, food is a big area of interest when talking about natural and organic vs. commercially produced.  Whether it's packaged baby food or fresh fruit and veg, what we put into our mouths (and the mouths of our babies and children) is one area many parents don't want to compromise on.  This issue will be a big one- there are many references I'll need to dig up before going into it, but the short story is, we are what we eat and if we feed our kids a plethora of pesticides, food colouring, preservatives and packaged foods, we are drastically increasing their risk of behavioural and learning disorders, low immune systems and skin conditions.  Again, there are many companies- many of them small local businesses- catering to the desire for fresh, natural, healthy foods from convenience items to organic fruit, veg and meat.  

If this hasn't convinced you that a greener lifestyle is worth the effort and cost, don't worry.  I'm not here to preach or criticize- in fact, I'm just learning about a lot of these issues myself and on a limited budget, sometimes price will win out over preference.  I'm just trying to make as many small changes as I can in the hope that it will make a BIG difference in the long run.

I hope you enjoy my blog and get some useful advice!  Amy


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