What Toxins are Lurking in YOUR Home? (Part I)

Nancy Weiser, MBA, CHWC

 

There are three ways we are exposed to and may absorb toxic chemicals into our bodies:

 

  1. We ingest them through pesticides in conventionally grown (non-organic) foods and often in our water.
  2. We absorb them through skin products and shampoos. The average women has used 14 products on her body before leaving the bathroom in the morning.
  3. We inhale them in our homes when we use household cleaning products and cook with non-stick pans.

It is the ongoing and habitual exposure to the low levels of chemicals we may not notice that add up to our “body burden” or “toxic load” that accumulates over time. These seemingly harmless substances can affect our endocrine systems that regulate our metabolisms and our immune systems. Chemicals known as obesogens can wreak havoc with fat metabolism. Hormone disruptors and carcinogens can cause many health issues including memory loss.

The good new is there is a lot you can do to protect your health in your home. Here are a few ideas to keep in mind when considering how to clean up your clean up routine. 

 

Household Cleaning Options

There are cleaner and safer household cleaning alternatives brands such as Seventh Generation, Ecover, AspenClean, etc.and some private label supermarket brands.  Read the label to see what ingredients are used.  Always test the product in a small area first for any respiratory reactions, like you would a new skin product on a patch of skin on your arm. 

Make your own: Use a solution of 50% distilled water with 50% vinegar. You can add 2 teaspoons of alcohol and a few drops of an essential oil you like (try lavender, oregano, rosemary, lemon, orange or tea tree). Combine your ingredients in a spray bottle (glass is best), and start cleaning (after the small area test).

Try a castile soap like Dr. Bronner’s. This can be your everything soap for your house, your body and even your hair, and comes in several pleasing scents.

 

Here are some other options: 

Green Shield Organics All Purpose Cleaner and Biodegradable wipes

Whole Foods Market All Purpose Cleaner

Bar Keepers Friend for a very effective scrub cleanser

 

For more information on how to reduce the “body burden” that results from exposure to environmental toxins over time, go to: https://sharpagain.org/environmental-toxins/

 

Sources: Tools for Teaching Toxicity, www.laraadler.com

Slow Death by Rubber Duck: The Secret Danger of Everyday Things. Rick Smith and Bruce Lourie, 2009

 

Nancy Weiser, founder of Weiser Choices, is a board member of Sharp Again.

 

 

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