Why There's Antifreeze in Your Toothpaste: The Chemistry of Household Ingredients

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Chicago Review Press, 2007 - House & Home - 288 pages
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A Selection of the Scientific American Book ClubExplaining why antifreeze is a component of toothpaste and how salt works in shampoo, this fascinating handbook delves into the chemistry of everyday household products. Decoding more than 150 cryptic ingredients, the guide explains each component's structural formula, offers synonymous names, and describes its common uses. This informative resource can serve curious readers as a basic primer to commercial chemistry or as an indexed reference for specific compounds found on a product label. Grouped according to type, these chemical descriptions will dissolve common misunderstandings and help make consumers more product savvy.


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Interesting book if only the science behind it was correct. Several claims he makes (e.g., 'theobromine is a caffeinelike stimulant' and 'is the moodenhancing drug in chocolate) are completely ludicrous. I read a few pages and decided to give this one a miss.

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Page xiii - In case of contact, immediately flush eyes with plenty of water for at least 15 minutes.
Page xiii - ... hazard may be acute. Outside or detached storage is preferred. Separate from incompatibles. Containers should be bonded and grounded for transfers to avoid static sparks. Storage and use areas should be No Smoking areas. Use non-sparking type tools and equipment, including explosion proof ventilation. Containers of this material may be hazardous when empty since they retain product residues (vapors, liquid); observe all warnings and precautions listed for the product. 8. Exposure Controls/Personal...
Page xiii - ... pressure mode, or a supplied-air respirator with a full facepiece operated in the pressure demand or other positive pressure mode and equipped with an auxiliary escape type self-contained breathing apparatus operated in the pressure demand mode.
Page xiii - Keep in a tightly closed container, stored in a cool, dry, ventilated area. Protect against physical damage.
Page xiii - Very large doses can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and prostration. Dehydration and congestion occur in most internal organs.

About the author (2007)

Simon Quellen Field is the author of Gonzo Gizmos and Return of Gonzo Gizmos and the creator of the popular website www.scitoys.com. He lives in Los Gatos, California.    

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