Our environment plays a huge role in our daily decisions. It is well known that if unhealthy food is within reach, you will likely eat it. Living a healthy lifestyle extends far beyond diet and exercise. When it comes to staying healthy, one of the most important things you can do is keep your home clean.
Making small changes to your home can improve your happiness, energy and well being. Here are 6 ways you can make your home a healthier place to live and it’s all free!
OPEN YOUR WINDOWS
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, indoor air quality is one of the top five environmental health concerns. Indoor air can be unhealthy due to mold, pet dander, along with vapors and fumes in everything from furniture and carpets to perfumes and cleaning products. Open your windows as much as possible and breathe in that beautiful Hawaiian fresh air. Be sure to open windows and doors on opposite sides of the house to get air moving all around.
DON’T MICROWAVE PLASTIC
Heat causes chemicals to leach out of plastic and into our food and beverages. According to studies out of NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City, these chemicals can potentially increase one’s risk of high blood pressure and insulin resistance. Even plastics labeled “microwave-safe” are not truly safe. Transfer and reheat your food in microwave-safe glass/ceramic containers or on the stove top instead.
VACUUM AND DUST OFTEN
Dusty and dirty floors and counter tops are often primary culprits for indoor allergies. The best way to beat these allergens it is by dusting, mopping and vacuuming frequently. If possible, use a vacuum with a HEPA filter to remove harmful particles from indoor air and vacuum two or more times per week.
WASH YOUR PRODUCE
Many fruits and vegetables sold today are treated with pesticides, and residues of these potentially harmful chemicals often remain on their surfaces. Washing your produce is not only to remove dirt and germs but also to reduce traces of these pesticides. Wash your fruits and vegetables by rubbing them under running water for about two minutes. If you have time to take an extra step, consider submerging your produce in a solution of one teaspoon of baking soda and two cups of water for two minutes or more (the longer you soak, the more chemicals will be removed). Note: Organic is the best choice because it is not only better for your health, but also for the environment, and the people who grow our food. Washing will not remove all pesticide residues so buying organic is best, especially for the fruits & vegetables with the highest pesticide levels.
REVIEW LABELS CLOSELY
Take the time to learn how to read and understand labels on the products you buy. Not only do you want to steer clear of foods high in sugar and food additives, but also be sure to review your cleaning and beauty products. Especially products labeled poison and/or danger. Learn which certifications to look for and opt safer cleaning and beauty products instead. It’s an ongoing process, but it is worth it!
AVOID AIR FRESHENERS
There and many hazardous chemicals found in air fresheners and they may be damaging to your health. Scented air freshening products, like sprays, plugins and candles pollute the air with toxic ingredients and all contain irritants to the airways. If you want to freshen up your home, try an alternative, brew mint tea or grind up a fresh orange, or use organic essential oils which are harmless to your health and your home’s indoor air quality.
It is scary how often we expose ourselves to toxins in our own home. Hopefully some of these simple reminders will help you make your home a safe and healthy place to live!