By Fredrica Syren:
Unfortunately, many items at home, as well as products we buy, contain harmful chemicals. The problem is a lack of restrictions to prevent manufacturers from using chemicals in their products. It is impossible to protect against all harmful chemicals. But it is possible to avoid several of them. By making an environmental effort, you reduce the risk of a toxic cocktail effect (when the interaction of several chemicals may have an unpleasant health effect). Here are some of my tips for a simple and quick start to eliminating chemicals from your life.
Chemicals you may be exposed to daily:
Formaldehyde—Found in glue, nails polish, paints and much more
Benzene—Found in plastic, detergents, paints and smoke
Chlorine—Usually found in lots of laundry detergent and household cleaners
Phthalates—Found in shampoo, soap and plastics
And this is how you reduce your exposure to chemicals at home:
- Air out your home regularly and have plants to clean air
- Skip plastic
- Switch to nontoxic beauty products
- Eat organic food
- Buy organic clothes
- Make sure furniture, rugs and sheets are chemical-free
- Skip non-stick cookware
- Use only fragrance- and toxic-free household cleaners— Remove toxic household cleaners and invest in nontoxic and green cleaners. Believe me, there are so many better options available in today’s market. Just make sure to look up the brands to be certain they are the real thing, not greenwashing. Or make it a lot easier and cheaper by cleaning with homemade household cleaners.
- Brush teeth with chemical-free toothpaste— And why stop there when you can also switch from plastic to bamboo toothbrushes and plastic-free dental floss?
- Remove your shoes indoors
- Skip take-out and processed food
- Use natural sunblock
- Invest in a good water filter
- Skip regular laundry detergent, bleach and dryer sheets
- Eat fewer animal products — Unfortunately, there are too many chemicals and toxins as well as pharmaceuticals in meat, fish, seafood and other animal products; so reducing your consumption of these will reduce exposure to these chemicals.