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Personal Health and Sustainability

". . . we must recognize our grave duty to hand the earth on to future generations in such a condition that they too can worthily inhabit it and continue to cultivate it."
pope benedict xvi - caritas in veritate

Reducing your personal pollution:

sticker with logo
Designed by Joni Cheung, Boston College '17

Learn and Change

Inform yourself on what's in the products you buy.

  • The FDA does not regulate what goes into cosmetics so check your personal care products for toxins with Cosmetic Database and a smartphone app, Think Dirty, that allows you to look up products quickly.
  • Reduce the Perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs) in your life! (Teflon, scotchguard, etc.)  connected to liver toxicity, thyroid and immune system disorders, infertility, and developmental disorders. Learn more at Mind Disrupted.
  • Silent Spring Institute has great info for personal and community action, including reducing toxins in your home, personal care products, cleaning supplies, etc.
  • Green Science Policy Institute has many great resources for learning and taking action on reducing toxics in sofas, in children’s products, and in other consumer goods.

Purchase products that are low in toxins and don't have harsh chemicals. Here are some websites to help you find out what common products are better for the environment and your health:

  • Seventh Generation produces environmentally friendly, plant-based household cleaners and detergents that are just as tough on dirt as your regular cleaners.
  • Use Stainless steel water bottles to avoid bisphenol A (estrogen mimic) found in plastic water bottles. Some great alternatives are Hydro Flask & Healthy Human water bottles.

Do It Yourself Options

  • Many household cleaners have harsh chemicals that affect your health and the environment. TURI provides some great recipes for do it yourself cleaners that you can make with common household prodcuts.
  • EcoPledge of Boston College has started a Green It Yourself campaign in an effort to provide the BC community with ecofriendly options! Check out their videos here.

Look Out For You Pets

  • Your pets' medicine and toys can also be ridled with toxins and harsh chemicals that are bad for you and themm. Green Paws provides a comphrehensive list of the common flea and tick treatments for dogs that have been sorted into three potential risk levels.

Take Political Action

  • Alliance for a Healthy Tomorrow  - aims to prevent harm to our health and environment by creating laws and policies that result in phasing out toxic chemicals in consumer products and replacing them with safer alternatives. 
  • Campaign for Safe Cosmetics will help you stay up to date on the latest legislation, including ways to help.
  • Safer States health and environmental groups fight for—and win—solutions to the problems of our nation’s flawed chemical policies. State by State.


Information courtesy of Laura Hake, Boston College Biology Department, and Joni Cheung.