Published on Friday, 06 April 2012 10:47
The Danish Consumer Council has released a report listing the 58 cosmetic brands that have voluntarily removed endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) from their products. The Danish Government has been a leader in protecting consumers from exposure to toxic chemicals through consumer products. They were one of the first nations to ban bisphenol-a (BPA) and are currently the leader in the European Union on banning/removing EDCs.
Why should we be concerned about EDCs? EDCs are chemicals that are capable of disrupting the normal functioning of our endocrine and immune system. This disruption causes our hormones to become unbalanced and our immune system to malfunction. Additionally these chemicals are capable of affecting the human reproductive system, causing infertility, miscarriages and abnormal development of the human fetus in a mother’s uterus. EDCs have also been connected to prostate and breast cancer. (You can read more about EDCs/hormone disruptors by following the link)
What we find truly refreshing and amazing about this announcement is the willingness of the Danish Consumer Council to openly attack those companies that have decided not to comply with the removal of EDCs from their products.
“While the EU Commission is currently debating whether or not to ban parabens in personal care products for children, 58 brands no longer use the parabens or any other EDCs in their cosmetic and personal care products for children or adults in Denmark. The Danish Consumer Council is pleased with this development, but wants more international brands to phase out the EDCs.
The producers behind the 58 cosmetics brands on the Danish market have proven that it is not necessary to use EDCs in cosmetics and personal care products. Massive consumer pressure has led to a phase out of the 17 substances found in the most dangerous category 1 on the EU list of substances that have endocrine disrupting effects.”
So what companies chose not to remove EDCs from their products? Here is a list:
Biotherm (Via L’Oreal)
Garnier (Via L’Oreal)
Helena Rubinstein (L’Oreal)
Kerastase (Via L’Oreal)
Lancome (Via L’Oreal)
La Roche-Posay (Via L’Oreal)
Maybelline (Via L’Oreal)
Redken (Via L’Oreal)
The Body Shop
Vichy (Via L’Oreal)
Yves Saint Laurent (Via L’Oreal)
We are envious to watch a government do what it is supposed to do to protect their residents. Just last Friday we saw our own U.S. Food and Drug Administration continue to demonstrate the ability of corporations to buy off the health and safe concerns of consumers in America by denying the growing science demonstrating the health risks posed by BPA and their decision to once again take no action to protect our public health.
What the Danish Government has done is what our own agencies should be doing to protect consumers. They Danish Consumer Council has not banned these EDCs but may be doing something more powerful. By publishing a list of those who have voluntarily complied and those who have not, attention is focused on those who chose to not adopt the EDCs ban. Consumers now know what companies value consumer safety and they can now chose if they are willing to expose themselves to EDCs by using those products that still contain EDCs. The Danish Consumer Council understands that information is power and providing consumers with basic disclosure of information on the risk of ingredients used in cosmetic and personal care products is key to consumer's having power.
We want to thank the Danish Government for moving forward with this effort to remove EDCs from cosmetics and personal care products. You can view the entire list of companies that have and have not removed EDCs from their products by following this link.
You can read the Danish Consumer Council media release by following the link. You can stay up to date on the DCC’s campaign to remove EDCs by following the link to their website.
To read more about ingredients you should avoid in cosmetic and personal care products, follow the link to Coily Embraces list.
Published on Tuesday, 20 March 2012 11:59
I have very vivid memories of my childhood and wanting to become a physician. I spent many hours, actually days/months/years, playing “Doctor” with my stuffed animals. I had everything you could imagine in my “office”. Each animal had their own medical chart. I had bandages and other “equipment” to perform procedures. If my patients were “sick”, I could cure them.
I was also very fortunate that my mother, a registered nurse, encouraged my dream to become a doctor. When I was running low on charts or bandages she made sure that I got more. She encouraged my pretend play and made sure that no one diminished my dreams. I know that this “pretending to be a doctor” and the support of my mother played an important part in my becoming the physician I am today.
Recently I was watching Disney Junior with my youngest daughter when I saw an advertisement for Disney’s newest cartoon Doc McStuffins. The show is based on the adventures of a young African American girl and her ability to talk to and treat the ailments of toys. As I watched the commercial and the sneak peek episode, I saw myself. I remembered those days when I “talked to my toys” and cured whatever ailed them. I remembered how those dreams of a young girl laid the foundation for a future career.
Many readers know that we have expressed our concerns here in Coily News about the lack of diversity among medical professionals. We have written about studies that demonstrating that the lack of diversity among physicians is tied to increasing disparities in the quality of healthcare received by many Americans. As the United States continues to rapidly become a “majority minority” nation it is crucial for patient care that we have medical professionals that reflect that diversity. But how will we ever achieve this crucial public health goal? Disney’s Doc McStuffins is important part of the answer.
In this day and age when children of color are bombarded with media images of “success” that are based on becoming a professional athlete or an entertainer, we should not be shocked that most of our children’s dream career are one of those two. I see parents spending time and money (large amounts of both) on a child's sports and/or music lessons and develpment. It seems that parents and children are consumed with winning a “golden ticket” (American Idol) or being the number one pick of the NFL or NBA draft.
What we have not seen for our children are media images that promote careers in medicine. For every Robert Griffith III, LeBron James, Beyonce, Jay-Z and Rihanna there are millions of children who do not achieve career success in sports or entertainment. Lost in this focus on sports and entertainment are great role models such as Dr. Ben Carson and U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Regina M. Benjamin (Xavier University of Louisiana Alumnus). Just five decades ago these two individuals would have been household names that all of our children would have known. Parents would be dreaming about their children growing up and becoming the next Dr. Carson or Dr. Benjamin and not the next great athlete with their own Nike shoe.
Disney’s Doc McStuffins provides us with a new opportunity to change our children’s focus away from sports and entertainment. Doc McStuffins will be viewed by millions of small children each day. The children who watch Doc McStuffins will start their lives believing that it is "ok" that they dream to be a physician. They will have an alternative view of life that provides a real career path that is not based on dribbling a ball or singing a song. Parents will now have a tool to reinforce the importance of education and the real possibility of becoming a physician. This is a wonderful and exciting development and we should all be “singing” words of praise for Disney.
It was not too long ago that Disney’s release of the Princess and the Frog was viewed by many in “the community” as a half hearted attempt to embrace diversity. I heard many friends and family criticize the movie for not truly providing a role model for African American children. They said that Tatiana was not brought to the same level of “being a princess” like the other Disney princesses that had came before her. Many felt it was not the uplifting and positive story we had all wished for our children.
After watching Doc McStuffins, I believe that Doc McStuffins is the Disney character and program we had all hoped for. Not only does Doc McStuffins provide much needed diversity for Disney, it provides us with the ability to refocuses our children on new possibilities for their future. Those new futures may end up playing an important role in ensuring the well-being of all Americans. Imagine in a few years there will be another young lady, who will remember watching Doc McStuffins and playing doctor with her stuffed animals, whose “golden ticket” will not come from a singing competition but in the form of an acceptance letter to the medical school of her dreams. Now that is something worth celebrating.
We want to close by thanking Disney for developing and airing Doc McStuffins. You can visit Doc McStuffins Disney Junior page by following the link. Doc McStuffins premiers on Disney Junior on Friday, March 23 at 7:00am EST.