Going on a detox diet? Do you realize that to get the best results from it you should detox your home too?
When you detox your body it’s important to avoid as many toxins as you can both from food and the environment to lessen the toxic assault on your body and to prevent them building up again.
Experts have said that your home could contain between 500 – 1000 different chemicals which you breathe in and get into your body where they could cause you harm over time.
Just recently experts at the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists in the UK published a paper to inform pregnant and breast feeding women about the potential danger of chemical exposures in their homes that could harm their babies.
Although it has been criticized as scaremongering, in defence of the report, Michael Coleman, professor of toxicology at Aston University says “It’s patronising to say we shouldn’t tell people about the potential risks just because we’re not certain”.
Experts have long been claiming that house pollution is worse than outdoor pollution. A whole host of toxic chemicals lurk in your soft furnishings, furniture, carpets, paints, cleaning products, air fresheners and candles.
So before you embark on a detox program here are some simple ways to detox your home as well.
Choose natural cleaning products such as eco-friendly washing powder and biodegradable washing- up liquid.
Avoid using fabric dryer sheets that are loaded with toxic chemicals that get deposited on your clothes and absorbed through your skin and use reusable, chemical-free dryer sheets or natural dryer balls instead like these Organic Wool Dryer Balls
Instead of your usual air freshener choose chemical free products made with essential oils.
Consider investing in an ionizer. It will purify the air by replacing positive ions which can trigger fatigue, depression and breathing difficulties with negative ones to freshen the atmosphere.
Make It Yourself
Have you noticed that terrible chlorine smell that wafts up from many commercial dishwasher tablets and liquid detergents? They are packed with toxic chemicals that can irritate your skin, eyes and lungs.
A healthy alternative is to make your own:
Simply mix together 2 cups of borax, 2 cups of bicarbonate of soda, and half a cup each of salt and citric acid in a large container with a lid. Give the mixture a good shake before you use it. Use 1 Tbsp per load.
Kitchen worktops and dishcloths are the perfect breeding ground for bacteria but there is a lot of controversy over the use of anti-bacterial sprays.
Experts have said that there is no evidence that they do any good and there’s reason to suspect that they could create antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
Many contain triclosan but some scientists are concerned that it may harm people’s health.
Dr. Sarah Janssen, a physician and senior scientist with the Natural Resources Defense Council, an environmental advocacy group. said “Triclosan is what we call a stupid use of a chemical,” “It doesn’t work, it’s not safe and it is not being regulated.”
You could use a multi-surface spray that contains natural essential oils but good old fashinoned natural soap and water works just as well.
Ditch the chemical toilet cleaner in favor of a natural one. Make you own with 4 oz vegetable based dishwashing liquid, 2 cups baking soda, 2 oz water, 2 tbsp white vinegar. Mix ingredients together adding vinegar last and put in a clean squeezable bottle. You can even add 1/2 tsp essential oils such as lemon or pine to give it a fresh smell.
Furniture, Soft Furnishing and Carpet Toxins
One of the most toxic items in your home is your carpets. Hard to imagine but they can contain over 100 different chemicals from dyes, bonding materials, backing glue, fire retardant, stain resistant, fungicide and anti-moth treatment.
The chemicals can outgas for years afterwards so if you really want to detox your home consider getting rid of them in favor of cotton rugs, hardwood, natural linoleum or ceramic tiles.
An alternative is to get them cleaned regularly with a steam or carbonating-cleaning process. Don’t forget that unless you take your shoes off after you have been outside your carpets pick up and retain chemicals that you bring in from outside.
The first thing I did when I first heard about all the chemicals that carpets contained at a seminar I went to given by a speaker from People Against Cancer was to arrange to have my carpets cleaned.
Avoid furniture and carpets that have been treated with stain guard due to the presence of PFC’s.
A lot of household items are made of particle board or chipboard but most of it contains formaldehyde, a potent toxic chemical that has been linked with cancer. It becomes less and less toxic over time but can take up to 10 years for it to completly outgas.
Replace it or seal it with a non toxic sealer.
Would you ever have believed there were so many toxins in your home?
Dangers of Paint
Most paints give off volatile organic compounds (VOCs), chemicals that evaporate in the air as well as formaldehyde and heavy metals.
You breath in the VOCs and they get absorbed into the bloodstream where they can have an affect on the nervous system and organs.
It’s known that professional painters who are exposed to high levels of paint vapors for long periods of time, end up with damaged nervous system, liver, and kidneys.
Researchers have found that some chemicals cause cancer or reproductive and developmental effects in laboratory animals.
Both the Environmental Protection Agency and the guidelines drawn up by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists warn that to avoid any health risks for themselves and their unborn babies, pregnant women should avoid painting projects and should limit their time in freshly painted rooms, especially when oil-based paints are being used.
But, it makes sense for everyone to avoid using conventional paint. Even many of the ‘non-toxic’ paints from conventional companies still contain VOC solvents, chemical pigments and fungicides.
I started using Eco Paint quite a few years ago. They come in a wide range of colors and are just as good as commercial paint.
Did you realize how much you can do to detox your home and make it your low pollution sanctury?
How have you made your house healthy? Let me know in the comment box below.