Toxic Free – Book Review

Review by Michael Smith (Veshengro)

How to Protect Yours Health and Home
from the Chemicals That Are Making YouToxic_Free_cover Sick
by Debra Lynn Dadd
Tarcher/Penguin September 2011
Paperback 250 pages
ISBN: 978-1-58542-870-0
Price: US$ 15.95

The very first comments that I would like to make about this book is that scaremongering does not become and is not really a good idea.

While the writer certainly is right about artificial sweeteners such as aspartame, and others of its ilk, sugar is not a poison and there are no toxic chemicals being used in refining sugar at the refineries; at least not in the UK nor the rest of the European Union. Either the USA has different, rather dangerous standards, which then make me more than glad that I live over here and not there or the author talks, as our Digger friends would call it, bull dust.

This is not the first book that I have ever reviewed that has scaremongering very high on the agenda, I must say, and I ask myself each and every time what an author gets out of a practice such as this. Unless, that is, such an author has links with certain manufacturers and suppliers.

Reading this book – the first that I have ever read by this particular author – I must say that I must wonder what poisons are permitted for use by the FDA in the United States. Lead core wicks in candles would something that would be an absolute “NO, NO” in the EU and, in fact, I have never come across a single candle with that kind of wick in my 50+ years on this Planet, neither in Britain nor in other European countries.

The term “toxic free” and the permanent quotes with the term “how to be toxic free” are grammatically wrong. But then again, it makes great copy. “Toxin free” - yes. “Toxic free” - No. Toxic is what a substance, a toxin, is to you and I and often also to the rest of the Planet.

The author is neither a trained medical doctor, nor a food or environmental scientist, nor a scientist of any kind, nor even a trained naturoparth, what the Germans would call a “Heilpraktiker”. Her “knowledge”, as is evident, comes from other books and scare stories by other people with a serious vested interest in scaring people to buy this or that “natural” product.

While there is a lot of good information in this book in some of the “How to be toxic free” sections, those are tainted by the author's use of i8nfor from very biased and dubious sources.

Alone for the serious scaremongering that is taking place on almost every page I cannot recommend this book.

It is very rare indeed that I am totally negative about about a book or a product but I must say that I am in this case. I cannot understand for the life of me how the publishers even considered taking on this book.

The New York Times calls the author the “Queen of Green” but I honestly cannot see how they arrived at that conclusion.

While, as I have said, there is some good and valuable – common sense – information in this book it is all wrapped up in half truths and falsehoods much like claim by some about FEMA concentration camps and such like. The positive (and negative) information can both be found for free at many places on the Internet.

© 2011