Keeping a toxin free home is getting more and more important and so we’ve listed 5 ways you can create a toxin free home.
Everyday our bodies absorb toxins; whether through our diet or our environment toxins can easily find their way into our bloodstream. We don’t always have the time to think about what’s best for our health and wellbeing; while we’re aware of lurking toxins our home is one place we tend to think of as relatively toxin free.
Unfortunately this isn’t always the case. From cleaning products to how we cook food, our homes harbour toxins that many of us don’t even know exist. From cooking a healthy meal to cleaning the bathroom these simple acts use chemicals we unknowingly inhale, ingest or absorb. The good news is there are small, simple steps you can take to drastically reduce toxins in your home; not only are these great for your health and wellbeing, they’re great for the environment and your bank balance too.
5 ways to create a toxin free home
1. Cleaning Products
There’s no better feeling than a sparkling clean home but have you ever thought about what’s in your cleaning products? Cleaning sprays are often packed with synthetic fragrances that can irritate your skin and lungs if inhaled. In fact the chemical odour from many household cleaners can be particularly dangerous to asthma sufferers, having a serious effect on the lining of the lungs.
When we look at the list of ingredients in cleaning products the chances are we wouldn’t voluntarily drink these but this is what’s happening everyday as we unwittingly ingest chemicals picked up from the surfaces of our home.
Great natural cleansers such as lemon and vinegar can be used safely on a variety of surfaces; from wiping down kitchen counters to cleaning your windows this is a natural and chemical free option that really works. The high acidity in both the lemons and vinegar helps lift limescale and calcium deposits and the alkaline helps remove stains.
You can make your own lemon and vinegar cleaner by adding lemons to white vinegar. Allow this to infuse for at least a week before adding equal amounts of distilled water. Help reduce plastic waste by using an old empty cleaning bottle or invest in a glass spray bottle.
2. Air Freshener
Traditional air fresheners are another product that are often loaded with chemical fragrances that can cause air pollution and negatively affect air quality; they’re also impossible not to inhale. Air fresheners tend to mask odours rather than help cleanse the air; the best way to remove smells or odours from a room is to get clean fresh air circling the area by opening doors and windows. Also make sure soft furnishings in the room are cleaned using bicarbonate of soda; rub this into the area you would like to treat, leave to sit for a while and then hoover the area.
Essential oils are another great alternative to air fresheners and can be used in a homemade diffuser or spray. To make your own diffuser mix essential oils into a glass jar and add wooden skewers; choose oils with clean, cleansing smells like lemon or tea tree oil. You can also make your own room spray by mixing essential oils with distilled water and rubbing alcohol into a spray bottle. Make sure you purchase high quality, pure, essential oils that aren’t mixed with anything else.
3. Toxin Free Cookware
When we think of toxins, cookware is one of the last places we expect to find them. But cookware is often coated with toxin heavy materials like Teflon, brominant flame retardant coatings and BPA plastic. Each time we use cookware these coatings can leach into the food we eat and ultimately into our bodies.
It’s also important to think about what our cookware is made of. For example, when exposed to acidic foods copper can break down and leach into our food; while copper is an essential nutrient for the body too much consumption can have a detrimental effect and has been linked to stomach ulcers.
Invest in good quality cookware and avoid buying pots and pans that have chemical coatings on them; good quality cookware will last you a lifetime if looked after properly.
4. Toxin Free Foods
Now you’ve sorted your toxic free cookware it’s time to make sure you’ve got a toxic free diet to go with it.
Eat your greens
Food manufacturers often use pesticides to control pests and diseases but residue from these are often left of produce, just one of the reasons why it’s so important to wash fruit and vegetables before eating them. Always try and choose organic options or, better yet, learn to grow your own. Most vegetables are easy to grow and can even be planted on small outside spaces like a balcony or a patio. Not only is this a cheap, environmentally friendly option but nothing beats the feeling of eating something you’ve grown yourself!
Say no to grilling
Think about how you cook your food; if you’re a meat eater it’s likely you’ve enjoyed grilled red meat before, and whilst this can be a great source of protein, grilling meat is bad news when it comes to toxins. When red meat is grilled the high temperatures can create polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (known as PAHs) which have been linked to cancer.
Incomplete burning of charcoal during grilling can also lead to PAHs. When it comes to cooking opt to roast or fry meat which will reduce the risk of PAHs; try to limit red meat consumption which the body finds harder to digest instead opting for white meat such as chicken or turkey.
5. Toxic Free Beauty Regime
The power of coconut oil
When it comes to eliminating toxins from your beauty regime try and opt for natural products as much as possible. Organic coconut oil is a great all rounder; not only is it cheap but it’s high in fatty acids and saturated fats which are great for both your hair and skin. Warm coconut oil and apply this liberally to your body, wrapping yourself in either a towel or dressing gown, letting this penetrate your skin for 45 minutes before rinsing off in a warm shower.
If your hair is dry and in need of a bit of TLC coconut oil can be used as a mask by warming the oil and combing it through your hair, paying particular attention to the ends. Leave this on for as long as desired, or for really dry, damaged hair leave this in overnight before rinsing off with warm water.
Coconut oil can also be used to remove makeup in the first step of a double cleanse; warm some oil in your hands and gently massage this into your skin, careful to avoid contact with your eyes. Use a clean, warm flannel to wash your face, removing any makeup residue before finishing with a non foaming cleanser.
Toxin Free hair care
Shampoo is another bathroom staple that is due a toxin makeover. Most shampoos contain sodium laureth sulfate that can strip the skin of natural oils, causing dry skin which can easily become irritated and lead to other conditions such as eczema. Shampoo bars are a great alternative; not only are these great for the environment by reducing single use plastic use but the majority of these are sodium laureth sulfate free! They’re smaller than a bulky plastic bottle taking up less room in your bathroom cabinet and often contain more washes than a traditional bottle of shampoo, all for a fraction of the cost.
A Toxin Free Future
How we live our modern lives means we’re never going to be completely toxin free; despite this it’s always a good idea to be as close to nature as possible, filling our homes with natural, organic products and creating a toxin free home. Not only are these natural and organic products good for our mental and physical wellbeing but they are kinder to the environment as well as being cheap and easy to source.
Making your own products and exploring natural alternatives is such a satisfying feeling that you’ll soon find yourself researching and exploring other non toxic alternatives to make your home a safe and happy place.