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What are surfactants? 

When you read the ingredients list of thousands of everyday products, you’re likely to see surfactants (pronounced sur-fact-ants). The word derives from a combination of surface, acting, and agent – and it describes what they do. Surfactants are chemical substances that are added to products to help break the surface, or surface tension of liquids … Continued

World Health Day 2024

This week sees the return of WHO’s World Health Day which promotes key themes for health across the globe. The theme this year,  ‘My health, my right‘ includes the right to good mental health for the first time, drawing much needed attention to the links between mental health and poor air quality.   Air pollution … Continued

Microplastic effects on health

Microplastics are everywhere – in our water and food, everyday household items, beauty products like shampoo, children’s toys, our home furnishings, and our rivers. Microplastics can also pollute our indoor air. So what is known about the effects of microplastics on human cells?   A study led by researchers at Hull York Medical School was … Continued

Bob Woods MBE gives a personal commentary on rising cancer rates

So many people will have sympathy for King Charles’ cancer diagnosis as we would sympathise for any of our own family, friends, and colleagues who contract this awful condition.    In 1950, fewer than 4 males per 100,000 would die from cancer but in 2005 it exceeded 15 per 100,000 a fourfold increase despite vast … Continued

Microplastics in water

Microplastic levels water in plastic bottles are up to 100 times higher than previously thought. That’s the startling conclusion reached by scientists at Columbia and Rutgers universities. One quarter of a million tiny microplastic particles known as nanoparticles were detected in an average 1L bottle of water. Previous studies have detected microplastics in bottled water, but … Continued

World Car Free Day

Friday 22 September 2023 is World Car Free Day. The aim of the day is to cut CO2 emissions by giving up our cars for a day and travel in a more sustainable way. It’s also an opportunity for us to see what towns and cities could look like without cars, and how our environment … Continued

What are ultra processed foods?

Ultra processed food (UPF) is the term used to describe foods where multiple ingredients have been combined to produce foods such as crisps, biscuits, mass produced breads and cakes, sugary drinks, cereals, pizzas, sausages, and other processed meat products.    Foods are classified by the NOVA system which places foods into four categories, including ultra … Continued

The link between mental health and the air we breathe

Air pollution causes up to 36,000 deaths every year in the UK – it is the most worrying environmental health risk we face today. But the effects of air pollution on our mental wellbeing are less well documented. In this post we present a roundup of the latest evidence that air pollution might be the cause of a range of … Continued

It’s strawberry season!

Strawberries are synonymous with Wimbledon, and this year will be no exception, even if it rains! A whopping 8615 punnets are consumed each day during the tournament, all grown in Kent from LEAF-registered farms, a charity that promotes balancing organic with chemical practices.     But aside from this great sporting tradition, strawberries are a … Continued

PFAS linked to hypertension in new study of mid-life women

PFAS might be a factor contributing to cardiovascular disease risk in mid-life women a new study published on 13 June 2022 finds. In this extensive study more than 1000 women underwent almost 12,000 ‘person years’ of follow-up. A staggering 470 women who tested in the highest percentile of serum concentrations of PFAS developed hypertension when compared … Continued

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