Natural Feminine Menstrual Products for Down There!
- As you all know, I am a HUGE advocate of traditional, ancestral REAL foods and nourishing our bodies in a more natural way. I am also a firm believer in the saying, “Don’t put anything on your body that you wouldn’t put in it.” In my other recent blog article, “Would You Eat What You Put on Your Body?”, I wrote about why this aspect is equally as important to consider, in addition to the food that we put in our body.
As I shared in “Would You Eat What You Put on Your Body?”, when I first began my health journey years ago, I did not initially recognize the importance of addressing this category. Then I realized just how vital it was to reduce the toxic load by also looking at what is applied onto the body. I slowly began transitioning away from the common toxic self-care products and towards more natural versions or eliminating them all together.
As the real food lifestyle is a JOURNEY, not a sprint, it takes time. No one is perfect in this - just chip away at it! I still chip away from time to time. I recently chipped away at another piece – feminine care products.
Years ago, as one of my very first steps into reducing toxins going into my body via self-care products, I changed over to organic feminine products, specifically organic cotton tampons. Most recently I took another step – I changed from regular usage of organic feminine care products to a more sustainable and cleaner feminine care product – a menstrual cup. Let me tell you, it’s been wonderful! Guys, don’t stop reading - you have women in your life! Share this with them too!
Let’s talk about WHY I encourage all women to change to less toxic feminine care products. The typical feminine care products out there are sanitary napkins (pads) and tampons. As you can tell, I like to share about my own journey…YEARS ago, I used Playtex tampons and Always sanitary napkins. Little did I know how TOXIC they actually were to my body.
Here are common toxic ingredients found in conventional feminine care products: (source http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-mercola/feminine-hygiene-products_b_3359581.html andhttps://gerson.org/gerpress/the-dirty-secrets-of-feminine-hygiene-products/)
- BPA (Bisphenol A) and BPS (Bisphenol S): Used for making the products more moldable (plasticizing). These chemicals have been linked to cancer, heart disease, and even disruption of embryonic development.
- Pesticide residue: from the genetically-modified cotton.
- Diuron: One of the herbicides used on cotton, has even been defined as a "likely" human carcinogen by the EPA and it's also linked to birth defects.
- “Fragrances”: a term that can mean a wide variety of synthetic chemicals that can go into the products unchecked. These so called fragrances contribute to all sorts of problems from cancer to infertility. They also create the PERFECT environment for bacterial growth.
- Parabens & Synthetic material: Can attribute to skin irritation, yeast infections, and other problems!
- Dioxin: The bleaching process, that makes your pads look shiny white, often employs the usage of the disinfectant chlorine dioxide, which produces trace amounts of a toxin called dioxin. Dioxin is a carcinogenic and it’s linked to reproductive problems, endocrine problems and developmental impairment at certain levels.
There are many benefits of using natural feminine care products:
For starters, using products made of organic cotton, free from chemicals such as chlorine, synthetic fragrances, and fertilizers is not only non-toxic and nicer to your BODY, but it’s also nicer on our ENVIRONMENT.
Chlorine used in the products is harmful for YOU and your PLANET.
Chemical fertilizers used in growing conventional cotton can leach into the soil and have negative effects on our planet via the ecosystems within it.
By using natural care products, you will greatly reduce the toxic load on your body and, when disposing of these, the earth too!
Fortunately, there are several alternatives to conventional feminine care products!
- Organic cotton tampons and pads. (This may be your first step for you to take as they are similar to what you are already using, just now non-toxic!) If you are going this route, I like these products: Seventh Generation Chlorine Free Organic Cotton Tampons - Regular -- 20 Tampons (you can find other absorbencies/sizes too) and Seventh Generation Pads, Ultra-Thin, Regular, with Wings, 18 pads (Pack of 6) (can find other absorbencies/sizes too) and Natracare 8002 Organic All Cotton Tampons With Applicator 16 Count (Pack of 3). (You can find other absorbencies/sizes for all of those).
- You could also use a menstrual cup, which is WONDERFUL! Don’t be grossed out. Menstrual cups collect blood rather than absorbing it. I procrastinated on trying a cup for a long time and I wish I would have started using it sooner! The Sckoon Cup is the one that I use. Another one out there is the Diva Cup: the Diva Cup Menstrual Cup for menstrual period (pre-childbirth) & Diva Cup Menstrual Cup for menstrual period (size 2) (for post-childbirth) are also great options!
Here's the Sckoon Cup!
Here are some of the many benefits of using a menstrual cup:
- Reusable and super cost-effective (about $30 for one and you only need one for years – versus a box of tampons or pads every month)! Saves you money!
- Extremely comfortable!
- Nothing besides medical grade silicon up there!
- Less leakage when properly inserted. There is a tiny learning curve here – a suction is what ensures that all liquid will be collected in the cup only. (When tampons shift of become saturated, that’s when messy and embarrassing leakages occur!)
- Holds much more than what tampons can absorb. They come in a couple different sizes so be sure to pay attention to that.
- Don’t dry out - Cotton in tampons can strip your vaginal walls of naturally occurring lining, making your lady parts more susceptible to disease and infection.
- The best of all is that they don’t need to be changed as often, 8-12 hours (including overnight) versus 4-8 hours. That means no fumbling with tampons and pads in public places or when you are out and about!
SO WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR? EITHER CHANGE OVER TO ORGANIC, NON-CHLORINE PADS/TAMPONS or BEST, USE A MENSTRUAL CUP!
FINALLY, if all that didn’t sway you to make the change, here are a few more important facts on feminine care products: (source http://ecowatch.com/2015/10/26/cotton-glyphosate-cancer/?utm_source=EcoWatch+List&utm_campaign=88851ce481-Top_News_1_1_2016&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_49c7d43dc9-88851ce481-85918929 )
- A study in La Plata, Argentina found that 85% of tampons sold contained a chemical compound, called GLYPHOSPHATE. This is said to be carcinogenic (cancer causing) and linked to use by Monsanto
- Additionally, 62% of these tampons had AMPA, a chemical compound of glyphosphate itself.
- Most of the cotton in the U.S. is genetically modified (GM), enabling the cotton to withstand many more toxic fertilizers and chemicals during the growing process. In fact, according to a U.S.D.A. agricultural report, 94% of cotton crops in the United States had some sort of genetic modification, be it for herbicide tolerance or insect resistance.