April in NC is beautiful…… blooms everywhere. But also pollen……EVERYWHERE.
If you’ve never experienced full blown pine pollen you have NO FREAKIN’ IDEA what a mess it makes everything. It actually hasn’t been as bad this year as in past years because we had a weird snap of really warm weather in early February. Some years it’s so think you can practically shovel it.
Which brings me to spring cleaning. I think people love to give everything a deep clean in the Spring because the days are brighter, our energy picks up, and we want to start the season fresh. Add in pollen…..and you have no choice but to Spring Clean.
The thing is, a great deal of what is used in the average US household may be doing us more harm than good. Many common household cleaners are packed full of harsh chemicals that are toxic to our systems. Remember, anything you put ON you gets IN you. Plus we all are breathing (well I assume you’re breathing if you are reading this), so we breathe in chemicals that can cause us some serious trouble. Look at the increase of health issues at all ages in our country.
Autoimmune diseases certainly are on the rise. Research suggest that our increasing environmental exposure to toxins and chemical is at the root of the increase.
Here are three ingredients to ban from your house and some effective alternatives
Chlorine is everywhere - in toilet cleaners, laundry whitening agents, mildew removers, cleansers, even tap water.
We are way over-exposed to this one. It’s absorbed through the skin, not only from cleaning agents but if it’s used in your city’s water supply to kill bacteria, you are even showering in chlorine. You also inhale the fumes when cleaning. It can cause difficulty breathing, chest pains, cough, eye irritation, increased heartbeat, or rapid breathing when inhaled but on top of all this, it’s a major source of thyroid dysfunction.
Easy subs – vinegar or baking soda. Try equal parts hydrogen peroxide and water plus some lemon essential oil for a whitening substitute without the hazardous fumes.
When you see the word “fragrance” or “parfum” on a label, then that product likely contains this toxic chemical. It shows up in air fresheners, dish soap, laundry detergents, toilet paper, and fabric softeners, just to name a few.
Pay attention here: This chemical is a known hormone disruptor, which means that it leads to count
less health issues. Much of the exposure to these chemicals are aromatic, but you can also absorb it through the skin by using scented soaps or lotions.
Crazy thing – it’s incredibly easy to avoid them. Read labels. Use oils. Instead of that artificial air freshener, fire up the diffuser and get actual health benefits AND good smells. I love diffusing citrus blends. They are so uplifting, they keep the air clean, and support your immune system.
This one is often found in “multi-purpose” cleaners, kitchen cleaners, and window cleaners. Generally recognized by its sweet smell, this chemical belongs to a group of toxins called glycol ethers. Not surprisingly, laws don’t force manufacturers to list this ingredient on the label, even though the on the EPA’s website it’s known to cause sore throats, pulmonary edema, liver and kidney damage, and narcosis.
Easy fix – In a spray bottle, combine equal parts warm water and vinegar. Add 10-20 drops essential oil(s) of choice. I choose On Guard blend for its cleaning and immune boosting properties or citrus oils. On Guard is a combo of Wild Orange, Rosemary, Eucalyptus, Clove, and Cinnamon. doTERRA makes a fab cleaner concentrate with it as well that we always have on hand. A couple tablespoons plus water and you get an all-purpose cleaner that is safe and effective (We use it in the carpet cleaner too – much safer)
Here’s an easy way to make all-purpose wipes with On Guard Cleaner Concentrate.
We HAVE to be as mindful of what we are using to clean with as we are with the foods we eat. I suspect our society has opened itself up to so many health problems because of the chemicals we choose to expose ourselves to in the guise of making our homes cleaner and more smell-goody. I’m going to spend this month sharing easy (and cheap) cleaning recipes on Facebook and Instagram. Be sure you’re following me so you don’t miss any. You can also get my free download with a few of my favorite recipes by filling out the form below. Check out more info on the dangers of cleaners
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