When Healthy Child Healthy World hosts a luncheon in the Hamptons, I become a lady who lunches for sure. Healthy Child is a non-profit that brings companies and communities together for collective advocacy for a healthier, safer world for generations to come. Healthy Child Healthy World was founded by James and Nancy Chuda, who lost their daughter to cancer linked to pesticide exposure in utero, a tragedy that could have been prevented. Did you know that 60% of what is applied to our skin topically is absorbed in the bloodstream? Everything we breath and touch has an effect on our health as well as our kid’s health. Gigi Lee Chang, the CEO of Healthy Child Healthy World, put it best: children make up 25% of our population and 100% of our future.
Sadly, this will be the first generation of kids not to live longer than their parents due to toxicity, obesity, and genetically engineered food. The mission to reverse this awful realization unites people all over the country. Today, I lunched with Gary Hirshberg of Stonyfield Farms, Gigi Lee Chang of Healthy Child Healthy World, Tiffani Theissen, (yes, Saved by the Bell) and LOTS of fabulous and interesting women, all of whom share a genuine value for making the world a healthier place. Who can’t get behind that?
The day was beautiful and the setting was perfect. Of course, the food was delicious and nutritious: kale salad, red quinoa, black bean burgers, salmon, corn, and Chloe’s Soft Serve Fruit for dessert. YUM. During lunch, we listened to an interesting panel discussion from Gary Hirshberg, Gregg Renfrew of Beautycounter, Robin Wilson of Healthy Space Interior Design, Dr. Richard Ash, The Ash Center, and Christina Anderson of Elizabeth Street. The point driven home is that we wrongly assume, as Americans, that when we shop, whether it’s at the grocery store, a high-end department store, pharmacy, or even farmer’s market, what we purchase is safe. From food to makeup, household cleaning products, sunscreen, clothing, etc. Unfortunately, our system is not built upon preventative healthcare, so our industry standards are sadly sub-par. Doctors are trained to fix health problems, not to prevent them. Until this changes, that’s where we come in.
While the mission of making the world a healthier, safer place, both today and in the future, seems totally overwhelming on a personal level, we can do our part. Gary Hirshberg was refreshingly insistent on making small changes. Collectively, this adds up. Don’t be overwhelmed if you can’t buy all organic foods, but do what you can. Buying organic is not only a step towards better health, it’s a step in the right direction for our progress as a nation. Each and every purchase made in the United States speaks volumes for our future. The things we choose to buy sends out the message that we prefer and support that product, that store, that brand. Buying organic, whole foods gives society a ‘yes’ that what we want is healthy food. In turn, each time we buy fast or processed food, we’re sending out the message that we support our current food industry. While many argue, myself included, that the price of local, fresh, unprocessed food is expensive, in the long run, we are investing in our future. Eventually, enough “votes” for real food will lower pricing. Increased demand forces a bigger supply. Simply put, we vote with our wallet, so one thing you can do is to use your vote for good.
If we want to make the world a healthier, safer place, it’s time to start making small changes, taking baby steps. This all starts with education. We’ve got to educate ourselves because we can’t really trust our current food, medical, or pharmaceutical industries. We must continue to research for ourselves, because things are constantly changing and new information is released daily. If you want to learn something new today, check out Healthy Child Healthy World. If you feel strongly about demanding the labeling of genetically engineered foods, check out Gary Hirshberg’s movement JustLabelIt.org and sign the petition to let those running your state, and our country, that food labeling is important. What else can we do? One suggestion, something we can all easily do is to take our shoes off upon entering the house, our own home and others. 85% of pesticides found in the home are brought in on the bottoms of our shoes. Another was starting with a nylon, instead of vinyl, shower curtain, and replace household cleaners with natural products next time you run out. Basically, just start reading labels and be more aware of what you’re putting inside your home, and your body.
In fact, if you take action today, in some way, (whether it’s doing five minutes of research on the web, leaving those shoes at the door, purchasing organic produce, or just pledging to become more aware) you could win a Weleda Body Wash and Body Lotion Kit! Weleda’s products are certified 100% natural and the first ingredient is water. If you’d like this Weleda revitalizing kit, just let us know in a Facebook comment on One Healthy Hamptons’ Facebook page with one way you already or plan to make a small change towards a healthier world. All comments will be considered and winner will be picked Monday, August 26th at noon via Random.org.