10 Simple Tips to Protect Yourself Against Harmful Chemicals in Your Home
Every day we are exposed to a barrage of harmful chemicals and unnatural substances that can wreak havoc on our health. These chemicals can be found in common household cleaning and beauty products that we are often unaware of. Not only are the effects harmful to your health, but they can contribute to damage in our environment as well. Read on to learn about 10 Simple Tips to Protect Yourself Against Harmful Chemicals in Your Home!
Simple Ways to Protect Yourself from Harmful Chemicals at home:
1. Read the Label
Avoiding some of the more commonly known toxic chemicals found in beauty products and household cleaners is a good start, but which ones should we avoid? In most of your beauty products this includes parabens and phthalates. Paraben's have been found in breast tissue and breast cancers and can penetrate the skin and act like a weak estrogen in the body.1
In many of our household cleaning products is a common chemical: chlorine bleach. When mixed with hot water, bleach can release chloroform, which is believed to be a carcinogen, or cancer causing agent. When shopping for cleaning products do your best to avoid buying cleaning agents that contain bleach.
2. Wash your Hands
Washing your hands goes a long way in protecting yourself from environmental chemicals and residues that can be left on your hands. Washing before eating is especially important to avoid ingestion of any lingering beauty product or cleaning product.
3. Prevent Mold
Mold spores are found in the air we breathe, but over time excessive mold contamination may cause health problems. Breathing in mold can cause allergic and respiratory symptoms. To avoid mold growth try to keep the indoor moisture levels low in your home. If mold does happen to grow, using a vinegar and water solution can be helpful to reduce the growth.
4. Avoid Fragrances
Fragrances in products are known to commonly contain phthalates, which help the fragrance last longer. This chemical has been linked to adverse health conditions such as cancer, reproductive toxicity, endocrine disruption, birth defects & respiratory problems. It can be tricky to avoid fragrance containing cleaners and products since manufacturers are only required to list the word “fragrance” on the label. Even if a product states “fragrance-free” or “unscented” it is wise to check the ingredient list to be safe.
5. Make your own Cleaning Products
This is by far one of the easiest, most affordable and healthiest ways to avoid toxic chemicals found in cleaning and household products. We’ve compiled a list of recipes to use when swapping out your store bought cleaners for home made ones. Some of the most common ingredients to stock up on include: vinegar, baking soda, essential oils, castile soap and lemon juice.
6. Avoid Non Stick Cookware
Non-stick cookware contains PFOA and PFOS, which are chemicals found to be carcinogenic. Investing in copper-clad pans is a worthy investment to avoid these toxins.
7. Avoid Wrinkle Resistant Clothing
The fabrics used in wrinkle resistant clothing have been treated with formaldehyde, and do not wash out. The safest fabrics are made with organic cotton, wool, bamboo, soy, silk and linen.
8. Use a Water Filter
The water you use commonly contains an irritating level of chlorine. By purchasing a filter, you will be able to block out most of the toxins from your water. The best filters are either reverse osmosis or water distillation systems.
9. Avoid Chemicals in Food
This one is a no-brainer, but can be tricky as even so-called “healthy” foods can contain chemicals. Choosing organic foods is one way to reduce the amount of chemicals found in your food. Also, looking for non-GMO food and foods that do not contain ingredients such as MSG, sodium nitrite and artificial food coloring can go a long way in reducing unwanted ingredients from your food.
10. Remove your Shoes
When entering your home removing your shoes can be a great way to not only keep your floors clean but also avoid tracking in harmful amounts of pesticides, lead, cadmium and other chemicals. In addition to removing your shoes, regularly vacuuming, sweeping and mopping helps to remove pesticides as well.
As you can see, we can be exposed to chemicals from the foods we eat to the household products we use in our home. This list of 10 Simple Tips to Protect Yourself Against Harmful Chemicals in Your Home is a good place to start when aiming to protect ourselves and family.
We hope this shed some light on the many chemicals that can be found right under our noses!
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