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Rethink your Toxic Menstrual Products
During women’s reproductive years we use menstrual products monthly for from 3 to 7 days. Rarely do women think about the consequences of what is in their menstrual products. Both tampons and plastic pads have toxins.
These toxins are even more important because of the location of pads and tampons and the cumulative effect over time. The vaginal tissues are some of the most absorbent in the body. Toxins that go through the skin go directly to the blood without being filtered through the digestive system.
Tampons are made of cotton or rayon or a combination of the two. This may seem natural, but here are some facts for you. Cotton has high amounts of pesticides used to grow it and is genetically modified. Studies pesticides increase infertility rates. (1) Pesticides have also been implicated in miscarriage, premature birth, reduced fertility in both men and women and altered sex ratio with fewer boys being born. (4)
Conventional Sanitary Pads are made from Toxic plastic
Sanitary Pads contain BPA and Phthalates that impact womens hormones and fertility. Harvard researchers speculated that BPA both decreases egg quality and interferes with the environment of the uterus reducing the ability of the embryos to implant. A small study found that the average BPA level in women with recurrent miscarriage was three times higher than in the control group. (4) Another study showed that women with higher levels of phthalate before they were pregnant were more likely to have a miscarriage than other women. (5) And the studies go on and on.
For more information on BPA and Egg Health read my blog: BPA Villain of Fertility
HealthY Menstrual Options
Use organic tampons and pads. These are the same as conventional tampons and pads but are not bleached and do not contain chemicals such as BPA and phthalates. You can find them here.
Use a menstrual cup. These are reusable bell shaped cups that fit inside the vagina and catch menstrual flow instead of absorbing it like tampons and pads. They are often made of silicone or a more natural product like the Keeper which is made of rubber. Often they are sized in two sizes: size B for before you have a baby and size A for after. They can last 10 years in good condition. A popular one is Intimina Lily Cup Compact. Women like that it is is collapsible and fits easily in a purse. Also it is smaller than some and possibly easier to insert. One draw back is it is made of silicone. You can look at it on Amazon here: Lily Cup Compact-Collapsible Menstrual Cup.
Use Clothe Pads. These are reusable pads that attach inside your underwear with snap or Velcro just like regular pads. They come in different absorbancy. They are cleaned by soaking in cold water and then washing in your washing machine. Clothe Pads come in a variety of styles and you can even get a pattern and make them yourself.
Sea sponges are natural sponges that come from the ocean floor. I read that they are usually harvested with a knife and regenerate quickly. They work like a tampon and can then be rinsed out and cleaned with vinegar, baking soda and hydrogen peroxide and then reused. Some women report they are a great help with prolapsed cervix, even after menopause. This may sound crazy to you, but I encourage you to give them a chance. :)
You can get them through my affiliate link here: Jade and Pearl Sea Pearl Sponge Tampons.
Period Panties are panties that contain a pad inside of them. They are easy to clean just like regular panties and come in a variety of fun styles. Some of them are designed with pouches for pads to slip into and others are designed to be extra absorbent and not need a pad at all. It is advised not to wear them on the heaviest days/nights of your period to avoid leaks but they are great for light days. Amazon has a great selection so be sure to use my link to browse EvaWear Period Panties.
So you see there are lots of options for non toxic menstrual products I encourage you to try a few of them. You might be surprised at how much you like the non toxic menstural products and the benefits you your hormones and fertility are wonderful!
1. Smith EM, Hammonds-Ehlers M, Clark MK, Kirchner HL, Fuortes L. Occupational exposures and risk of female infertility. J Occup Environ Med. 1997;39:138–147. doi: 10.1097/00043764-199702000-00011. [PubMed] [Cross Ref]
2., 3. http://www.environmentalhealthnews.org/ehs/newscience/pesticide-exposure-may-impact-female-fertility
6. Dioxin and Furan Levels Found in Tampons
Jeffrey C. Archer, Ronald Mabry-Smith, Sina Shojaee, Jimmy Threet, John J. Eckert, and Vincent E. Litman. Journal of Women's Health. May 2005, 14(4): 311-315. doi:10.1089/jwh.2005.14.311. Published in Volume: 14 Issue 4: May 25, 2005
7. Ehrlich, S, PL Williams, SA Missmer, JA Flaws, KF Berry, A Calafat, X Ye, JC Petrozza, D Wright and R Hauser. 2012. Urinary bisphenol A concentrations and implantation failure among women undergoing in vitro fertilization.
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