New York Times - Eat Like a Mennonite

January 18, 2013

By FLORENCE WILLIAMS

Excerpt: On the second day of my chemical-detox diet, I was very hungry. I’d been eating like a rabbit, all carrots and greens that I’d gathered, barehanded, from the baskets of the farmer’s market, no gloves or plastic bags allowed. I cooked up some quinoa that I bought packaged in paper from the supermarket sometimes known as Whole Paycheck. I was effectively a vegan because I couldn’t find meat or cheese that wasn’t wrapped in plastic, and I didn’t have access to accommodating livestock.

My 7-year-old daughter and I were participating in a pilot study conducted in 2011 by the Silent Spring Institute and the Breast Cancer Fund (a follow-up study was published later that year in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives). We had urinated into some glass containers a few weeks earlier, back when we were “normal” Americans, and now we were spending three days trying to reduce our exposure to plastics before supplying our urine again.

Testing Exposure Reduction Strategies