Wishing everyone a happy and healthy Thanksgiving!
Category Archives: organic
Airing tonight on HBO is a documentary that explores the chemical-laden flame retardants contained in much of today’s furniture.
Here is an excerpt from the article, Should Americans Fear Their Furniture? by New York Times author Jane Margolies:
“The pet hairs and red wine stains on sofas across America, it turns out, should be the least of our concerns. The real issue is what is in the foam cushions we curl up on every day: up to two pounds of flame retardants.
In their HBO documentary “Toxic Hot Seat,” scheduled to be aired on Monday, the directors James Redford and Kirby Walker disclose that these chemicals, as used in home furnishings, do not stop fires. They do, however, whoosh out of seat cushions when we plop down, hitching a ride on airborne dust and ending up in our bodies. They have been linked to cancer and other health disorders.
The film explores how a 1975 California law requiring retardants (Technical Bulletin 117) became widely adopted. And it follows the firefighters, scientists, health advocates, state legislators and investigative journalists who brought attention to the chemicals, leading to a recent reform of the California mandate — which the directors, who spoke from their homes in the San Francisco area, applaud.”
For the full article click HERE.
This issue was previous explored in the OMI blog “Makers of Flame Retardants Manipulate Research Findings.”
We at OMI continue to use a safer system that allows us to use organic wool as our only flame retardant. As a result, our mattresses are able to pass federal flame tests without the use of toxic chemicals or silica barriers. To use any form of chemical flame retardant in our products would violate our ethical standards and integrity. We stand by our purity so you and your family can have a safer place to rest your heads at night.
To learn more about OMI and the certified products we offer, click HERE.
From the ISPA (International Sleep Products Association), regarding our government acknowledging the use of chemicals in products:
“The Energy and Commerce subcommittee on the Environment and the Economy held a hearing today on the bipartisan Chemical Safety Improvement Act, a bill currently pending in the Senate. This is a significant action as the House rarely holds hearings on Senate legislation. The legislation would update the Toxic Substance Control Act (TSCA), which governs the use of chemicals in consumer products in the U.S. ISPA is a member of the American Alliance for Innovation (AAI), which was formed to make sure that any legislation to reform TSCA did not burden the industry. ISPA joined members of the AAI in supporting the compromise legislation.
Despite broad support, there has been an effort by some Senators, states and environmental groups to make changes to the legislation because they are concerned with the bill’s preemptive effect on state chemical laws. Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) is leading this charge and spoke at a recent hearing about making changes to the bill because she fears the compromise bill will limit California’s Proposition 65 and other state chemical laws. The AAI and ISPA support the bill, in part, because of its preemptive effect. The hearing and further action by the house could put pressure on the senate to not make significant changes to the current bill.
Any action on the legislation is not expected until next year at the earliest.
Efforts to reform TSCA in the past have failed but those were partisan efforts. ISPA will continue to follow the progress on this legislation.”
According to the National Sleep Foundation’s 2013 poll on exercise and sleep, getting more exercise will not only benefit you by gaining a better quality of sleep, but will also help you fall asleep faster and have fewer sleep problems.
Here are the National Sleep Foundation’s definitions of the types of exercise found in the chart below.
“In this self-report measure, vigorous was defined as activities, which require hard physical effort such as: running, cycling, swimming or competitive sports. The next level, moderate, was defined as activities, which require more effort than normal such as: yoga, thai chi and weight lifting. Light activity was defined as walking, while those who do not do any activity classified themselves into the no activity level.”
To view the full summary of the Sleep in America Poll®, click HERE.
Where do you fall on the chart?
Here is an excerpt from the article “Are You Sleeping on an Oil Field?” by Channaly Philipp, about the health risks of traditional foam mattresses and the benefits of organic:
“If you sleep on a conventional mattress (like most people do), you’re spending a third of your life lying on toxic chemicals. If this little-known fact has you tossing and turning, read on.
Since the 1960s, mattresses have been made of polyurethane foam, a material derived from petroleum that emits volatile organic compounds (VOCs). The popular memory foam mattresses are made from this material.
But VOCs are only part of the cocktail of chemicals in foam mattresses. Required to be flame-resistant, foam mattresses are imbued with flame-retardant chemicals that can cause cancer and nervous-system disorders.
Walt Bader, a sufferer of a condition called multiple chemical sensitivity and the author of “The Toxic Bedroom,” had several mattresses analyzed by a lab in Atlanta in 2005. One memory foam model was found to emit 61 chemicals.
The next year, he published the first definitive list of chemicals outgassing from memory foam mattresses.
“Nine of these chemicals are recognized as carcinogens by just about every significant health organization in the world,” Bader said on his website. “And do you know what has happened? Nothing.”
The outgassing is not only nefarious to people who suffer from respiratory issues, but some of the chemicals are also known carcinogens and endocrine disruptors.
As more people become educated about what they’re sleeping on, they are turning to organic mattresses and bedding in greater numbers.
….Organic mattresses, made of natural materials such as wool, cotton, and rubber latex, present an alternative to conventional mattresses and are becoming increasingly popular.
Wool is a natural fire retardant, and is excellent for regulating temperature and air circulation—a boon for anyone suffering from night sweats. The natural materials are also resistant to dust mites, which are a trigger for asthma and allergies.”
For the full article, click HERE.
Check out these strange sleep laws:
- Tulsa, Oklahoma has a law that prohibits people from sleeping while wearing boots. However, wearing shoes to bed is perfectly acceptable.
- In Minneapolis, Minnesota it is illegal to sleep naked, even in your own bed, in a home that you own.
- In different parts of Maryland, a woman may not go through her husband’s pockets while he is sleeping.
- In Clawson, Michigan they have a law that makes it legal for a farmer to sleep with his pigs, cows, horses, goats, or chickens.
- In the state of Washington it is illegal to sleep in another person’s outhouse without having their permission first.
- In Logan County, Colorado it is illegal to kiss a sleeping woman.
- Although it is thought to be common knowledge that sleeping while driving is highly dangerous, Tennessee ensures that there is no confusion by having a law that makes driving a car while sleeping illegal.
- Pilots in Tulsa, Oklahoma must sleep 10 hours before flying two planes in one day.
- Pennsylvania law prohibits people from sleeping on top of a refrigerator outdoors.
- In Delaware it is not only illegal to sleep on a public bench it is also illegal to pretend to be sleeping.
- Sleep laws do not apply to just humans but to animals, too. In Santa Ana, California it is illegal to let a horse sleep in a bakery.
So when you go to sleep tonight, make sure you are not wearing your boots while sleeping on top of your outdoor refrigerator (but only if you are in Tulsa or Pennsylvania).
As you are transitioning your bedding from summer to winter, think about adding a layer of comfort to the surface of your mattress with a natural rubber topper.
This 2″-deep natural rubber topper offers surface softness without taking away the support of your mattress. It’s made with a single core of USDA certified organic natural rubber latex sap, and covered with our signature OrganicPedic® knit quilting.
For more information about OMI pillow tops, click HERE.
When buying a new bed, you might generally think about finding the right mattress, then dressing up your bed with new linens. Often the foundation for a mattress is completely overlooked. A foundation not only provides support, but can also help the mattress in other ways.
First, the foundation ensures proper air circulation, which helps lessen the chance of mold and mildew. Second, it provides fabric-to-fabric contact so the mattress does not rub against a rough surface such as the wood or metal of a frame. Lastly, it allows you to adjust the height of the mattress from the floor.
Natural rubber mattresses are recommended to be placed on wood-slat foundations, while innerspring mattresses should be placed on box-spring foundations.
OMI offers both types of foundation:
Our 8″ box-spring foundation is constructed with 2″-thick boards of cabinet-grade, untreated, kiln-dried fir. The heavy-duty steel springs (free of potential toxins from solvents and oils) are covered with a layer of durable organic cotton canvas, padded with organic cotton batting, then upholstered with the same organic quilting materials as our mattresses.
Our wood-slat foundation is made of cabinet-grade, untreated, kiln-dried fir. A layer of durable organic canvas is placed over the 2″-thick boards, padded with certified organic cotton and pure wool batting, and upholstered with the same organic quilting as our mattresses. Slats are spaced approximately 2.5″ apart. The wood-slat foundation is made in several different heights: 2”, 3.5”, 8”, 10”, and 12.”
You don’t need a foundation if you have a platform bed. The slats on the platform bed should be between 2” and 3” apart and between 2” and 3” wide. If your platform bed consists of a solid surface, the mattress will not ventilate properly and will be subject to mold or mildew. We recommend our Wool Underbed Pad to protect your mattress from rubbing on the slats and developing wear over time.
For more information about OMI or to find a retailer near you, click HERE.
With the weather getting cooler and the food getting warmer, soup is the first thing I start to crave. Favorites like chicken soup and tomato soup are always great, but this fall I wanted to try something new. There are so many great ingredients that you can throw together to make a delicious-tasting (and healthy) soup! These great recipes are sure to broaden your soup horizon.
From Top Left to Right:
It’s almost time for the sweaters and the boots to make their way to the front of our closets and to send back the shorts and tank tops. Maybe you are in need of a new pair of boots or want some cute new tops to go along with your favorite pair of jeans. This year try to shop a bit more consciously.
Try shopping at a second-hand store. Consignment stores are a great option for purchasing designer clothing (at a great price) or even clothes that are in excellent condition that someone else didn’t want anymore at a great price. Thrift-store shopping is also a wonderful option because many thrift stores use proceeds to help non-profit organizations, such as Goodwill. In addition to shopping at either consignment or thrift stores, remember you can also donate your unwanted clothing as well.
While looking to add to your closet but not wanting to over-purchase, try an eco-conscious 5-in-1, skirt or dress. Sold in stores across the US, you can find many different styles to fit your needs. Thieves Boutique has a beautiful drape-style dress that can be worn as sleeveless, halter, long, medium or short to get the most bang for your buck. They also have a beautiful selection of clothing by sustainable designers.
Another way to shop is trying an organic or eco-conscious brand for your everyday clothing. Threads 4 Thought is a personal favorite. Not only do they use organic cotton, but they give to large charities as well as promoting a cleaner environment by recycling. It doesn’t hurt that their clothing is absolutely adorable as well.
Remember when shopping to bring your own reusable bags to reduce waste and carpool with friends for fun and to reduce your carbon footprint.