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Table 1 Some recommendations aiming at reduced exposure to health hazards during pregnancy and early postnatal life

From: Rationale for Environmental Hygiene towards global protection of fetuses and young children from adverse lifestyle factors

  Recommendations Targeted hazards
EDCs Mutagens Others
Everywhere Stop smoking tobacco and drinking alcohol x x x
Limit as much as possible passive smoking x x  
Avoid frequent close presence to power lines; limit the use of cell phones or cordless mobile phones    x
Limit the use of plastic or rubber toys and prefer products declared to be free of bisphenol A or phthalates x   
Stay in a cool place in case of heat > 30 °C    x
Personal care Restrict the use of cosmetics and lotions as much as possible x   
Prioritize unscented products and stop using perfumes x   
Do not color your hair; do not polish your nails x   
Avoid tattoos   x  
Food and drinks Prioritize food and drinks from glass container instead of plastic bottles or metal cans x   
Do not microwave food in plastic recipients x   
Use quality-controlled water in glass bottles x   x
Prioritize organic food whenever possible x x  
Avoid processed, especially nitrite treated, meat   x  
Avoid charred meat and consumption of bread or other cereal products that are darkened due to high temperature treatment   x  
Limit (once a week) consumption of predator fish (tuna, swordfish, …) x   x
Home care Wash new clothes before wearing them x x x
Avoid exposure to organic solvents   x  
Avoid as much as possible painting or coating (walls, doors, floors, …) x x  
Avoid scented cleaning products, air fresheners and fragrances x x x
Clean inside the house using damp clothes and reduce dust x   
Do not use insecticides x   
Ventilate the bedrooms and living rooms at home for 10 min, 1–2 times a day x   x
Outdoor Avoid the use of herbicides or pesticides x x  
Close the car windows and recycle air while driving on highways, in tunnels and in heavy traffic   x x
Prefer exercising in green areas and avoid heavily polluted air such as within 200 m of heavy traffic   x x
Others Avoid exposure to medical x-rays unless really necessary   x x