by Emily Stewart
For most of us, it’s hard to imagine a world and a life without toilet paper. But actually, less than a third of the global population uses toilet paper daily. And as it turns out, foregoing the T.P. might just be the best thing for our bodies and our planet.
Most of us assume that toilet paper protects us from dangerous bacteria and disease, but studies show that alternatives, like bidets, are actually safer and more effective. The chemicals found in a standard issue toilet roll will surprise you. Toilet paper fibers contain the much-hated chemical BPA, a xenoestrogen that the FDA has indicated is linked to increasing the risks of cancer, heart disease and infertility.
Of course, the primary problem with our toilet paper addiction is that we go through an enormous amount of it. Everyday, 27,000 trees go down the toilet as waste paper. And we consume thousands of gallons of excess water to flush the wad of paper through our sewer systems. If we each swapped just four rolls of traditional paper for recycled paper this year, we would save one million trees and 356 million gallons of fresh water.
To learn more about the impact of our $30 billion T.P. habit, check out this latest video from the Hidden Costs series.