Hat Tip To James
I grew up my entire life with taking shoes off at the door. It was always the policy of our home when I was a boy, and one that I never altered once out on my own. James and I are always polite with newcomers to our home when alerting them to leave their shoes in our entryway before coming into our home. No one has ever been offended, and once in our home with wood floors it all makes sense. But there are more reasons to take shoes off than just because we do not want to mar the wood. There are health reasons to0, as a new research shows.
In a new study, and the largest ever conducted, 22 pesticides were commonly found in the dust of homes in Salinas, California. Salinas is an agricultural community, but not all the pesticides found were agricultural pesticides. The Environmental Protection Agency and National Institute of Environmental Health have found that low level chronic pesticide exposure as found in these homes can cause numerous health problems, especially for fetuses and young children. The study was by the California state Department of Public Health and researchers with the Center for the Health Assessment of Mothers and Children of Salinas (CHAMACOS) with the University of California, Berkeley. Protection Agency.
- Another new study published in the journal of Environmental Science & Technology, found that toxic coal tar, a known carcinogen used in driveway sealants (among other places), is tracked into homes from driveways and parking lots.
- Lead is commonly tracked into homes on shoes. Lead was removed from paint by law after 1978, and from gasoline in 1996. Lead is still remarkably prevalent, and should be removed from the environment, especially for children. Even low levels of lead can cause a reduction in IQ. Elevated levels of lead in blood range from behavior disorders and anemia to mental retardation and permanent nerve damage. Other heavy metals, such as mercury, can also be tracked in on shoes.
- Taking shoes off at the door is especially important if you have carpets. Carpets are a sink hole for toxins of all kinds that are brought into the home on shoes and boots, including pollens, lead, pesticides, and more. The cumulative levels of chemicals can become quite significant given that it is hard to clean carpets frequently and well enough, to remove the pollution buildup.
- Infants and young children spend a great deal of time on the floor, and due to their size they are closer to the floor, and also put toys that have been on the floor into their mouths. With their growing central nervous systems and developing immune systems, toxic chemicals can be especially damaging.
- Pets are vulnerable to exposure because they commonly lie on the floor or carpet.