Ways to Reduce Toxins and Chemicals in the Home
Written by: Lindsay Shugerman
December 29, 2014
Filed Under Housekeeping
Contributed by Info Guru Lindsay Shugerman
It seems like every month brings news of new hazards from the things we take for granted in our homes. So it’s no wonder that people are anxiously looking for ways to reduce toxins and chemicals the home. We just want a healthy environment for ourselves and our families.
Of course, you could build a whole new green home, using only non-toxic and organic materials. But for most of us, that’s just not an option. So we need ways to lower the levels of dangerous or irritating substances in the home we already have.
The good news is that even small changes can indeed improve the safety of our home. Here are ten ideas to get you started on the way to a healthier home for everyone.
10. Start with your closet
The clothing sold in the average department store or boutique can include a disturbing number of toxins and chemicals. In some, it’s the material itself — synthetics made in labs instead of materials from plants or animals. And then there are the dyes, the chemicals used in processing and shipping and potential toxins used to keep items wrinkle-free during transit.
Simple switching to organic and natural clothing can immediate reduce the number of chemicals your body (and every surface in your home) touches every day.
9. Opt for eco-friendly furniture
Furniture is one of the biggest offenders when it comes to toxic off-gassing and unwanted chemicals in most homes. Instead of buying furniture made from chemical-laden pressed board and toxic finishes, choose solid wood furnishings finished with natural oils and waxes.
8. Sustainable floors with green finishes
The flooring in your home is another huge factor in the amount of toxins and chemical simply because of how much of it there is. That’s why replacing carpets and treated wood floors with sustainable choices like bamboo or unfinished wood is a better choice. Use natural oils to seal your floors for a beautiful look without the volatile chemicals.
7. The right air filters
Removing dust and chemicals from the air in your home is an important part of creating a healthier home. That’s why it’s so important to make sure you have the right size and kind of filters for your furnace, air conditioner and air purifiers. And don’t skimp on changing them…even a week over the recommended replacement date can affect the quality of your indoor air.
6. Water filters for your shower
Most people are familiar with water filters on kitchen faucets and ice makers. But a filter on your shower might be even more important. Why? The amount of water flow from showers and baths is far greater than from all other household faucets combined. That means your shower could be releasing toxic chlorine gas into your home! A shower filter can remove up to 95% of chlorine from your shower, making your home a safer place to breathe.
5. Choose beeswax or soy candles
Did you know that even occasionally burning synthetically made, colored or scented candles in your home can add long-lasting toxins that can linger in your home?
There’s no need to give up on candles entirely. Just buy 100% beeswax or soy candles scented with only pure essential oils.
4. Choose your body care and cosmetics carefully
The chpices we make when we buy a soap or a lipstick can add more toxins to our life…or can enhance our commitment to living a healthier, low chemical life. Look for cosmetics made from natural botanicals and pure essential oils.
3. Buy organic foods
The food on your plate should be as pure as the healthy home you’re trying to create. Look for organic fruits and vegetables, non-irradiated spices and naturally raised antibiotic-free meats.
2. Use natural pest control
Bugs and spiders are annoying, it’s true. But the chemicals many people use to banish them are far worse.
Instead of reaching for a can covered in warnings, look for pest solutions based on natural botanicals. They can be just as effective without all the side effects.
1. Rethink your cookware
If you’re serious about finding ways to reduce toxins and chemicals in your life, it might be time to take a second look at your cookware. Non-stick coatings and certain enamels can add chemicals you don’t want in your food.
Replace those potentially hazardous pots and pans with cast iron cookware and high-temperature glass pots. You’ll eliminate the risk of seasoning your food with a bit of paint or coating!
Reducing toxins doesn’t have to mean tearing down your house and starting from scratch. Every step in the right direction helps, and all those little positive changes can really add up to a healthier home.