What Cancer Risk do Pesticides Pose to the General Population?

If you don’t work with dangerous pesticides in your daily life or spend an inordinate amount of time spraying your home garden, how much are you affected?

chemicals are found in the air we breathe, the water we use for drinking and bathing, in the food we eat, and in the health and home products we use.

Children appear to be in the greatest danger, and not so coincidentally, childhood cancers are on the rise. Studies have found that children from homes that have a higher use of pesticides (including insecticides and herbicides) have a higher rate of cancer − especially leukemia and lymphoma. These two cancers are rare, except in children repeatedly exposed to these chemicals at home.

The risks are not limited to leukemia and lymphoma, nor is the threat only to children. A 1990 case-control study examined brain cancer rates relative to pesticide use. The researchers found that those families using pesticides had significantly higher rates of developing cancer. Subsequent studies have found consistent results.

Some cancers take longer to develop, so studies must have a longer duration in order to produce accurate results. Ongoing research is working to identify if the development of different cancers later in life is due to childhood exposure to pesticides. Cancers being studied for this factor include prostate and bladder cancer.

Professor of pediatrics and the Director of the Pediatric Environmental Health Specialty Unit at the University of Washington, Dr. Catherine Karr, said, “We are starting to get to the place where there is enough science, it just starts to add up to say that we can’t really ignore anymore…the role of environmental factors like pesticides in health.”


Here is a solid 10-point cruelty-free action plan for ridding your home and animal companions of fleas (you probably won’t need to take all 10 actions, but the more you do, the more successful your flea-elimination program will be―just see what works for you):

1. Purchase a good flea comb and use it every day to remove adult fleas from your animals’ coats. This will provide instant relief as well as helping you keep tabs on the flea population.

2. Bathe your animals with a gentle shampoo containing calendula, oatmeal, or aloe once every week or two. Throw their bedding into the washer while you’re at it.

3. Vacuum your house as frequently as possible, and stow the vacuum bag inside a plastic bag in your freezer to kill any fleas or flea eggs that you happened to vacuum up.

4. Give your animals a B-complex vitamin supplement every day to boost the health of their coat.

5. Make a natural flea repellent by adding six or seven drops of the essential oils of rosemary, peppermint, eucalyptus, tea tree, and citronella to a cup of water and shaking well. Use a spray bottle to apply the solution to your dog’s coat every other day. (Do not use this on cats―they are too sensitive to essential oils.)

6. Black walnut capsules are a good flea repellent for dogs―adjust the dosage by bodyweight and give several times a week.

7. Diatomaceous earth, which consists of fossilized algae, will kill fleas by causing them to dehydrate. It is very important that you buy the natural diatomaceous earth sold in gardening centers rather than the kind that is used in pools. The latter has been treated and contains dangerous chemicals. Spread diatomaceous earth on your carpets and hardwood flooring and leave it down as long as possible, then vacuum it up along with the dead fleas. It’s a very light powder, so be sure not to let your animals (or children) breathe it in while it is being applied.

How pesticides affect our elderly

 Recent studies show that by the year 2030 one out of every five Americans will be age 65 or older. This fact sheet provides a summary of factors that could increase the pesticide risk for older adults.

What effects could result from pesticide exposures in the elderly? 

The liver and kidneys become less able to remove pesticides from the body as we age. Pesticides may speed up aging of the liver or kidneys if these organs are injured during an exposure. Older adults may become even less able to remove pesticides from the body after the liver or kidneys are impacted.

The longer a pesticide stays in the body, the more likely It builds up to levels that may cause injury. Older adults may have health problems after a pesticide exposure, because their bodies can no longer remove pesticides quickly.

Chemicals such as prescription drugs or pesticides can react with each other once they are inside the body.

 These chemical reactions may cause unexpected health effects in older adults for two reasons. First, older adults may take more prescription medications.

  • Second, chemicals stay in the bodies of older adults longer, so they have more time to interact with a pesticide that enters the body.

Toxic Pesticides effects on newborn babies

Profound Studies conducted in 2006 found up to 287 industrial chemicals, pollutants and pesticides in 10 newborn babies, measured in umbilical cord blood. The contaminants included 133 carcinogens, 157 chemicals that can harm the brain and nervous system and 151 chemicals linked to birth defects.

Kinda make you wonder how can you not know at least some of the effects toxic pesticides and pollutants effect human, come on….

Myths about the danger of pesticides

Here are eight of the seemingly plausible myths we hear from agrichemical corporations every day:

  1. Pesticides are necessary to the feed the world
  2. Pesticides aren’t that dangerous
  3. The dose makes the poison
  4. The government is protecting us
  5. GMOs reduce reliance on pesticides
  6. We’re weaning ourselves off of pesticides
  7. Pesticides are the answer to global climate change
  8. We need DDT to end malaria, combat bedbugs, etc.