If you are constantly sick, or have allergies, or generally want to clean up your house and your health, here’s some changes you can make. I’ll be writing a 3-4 part series. Heck, it could be 5, it depends on how creative I feel. 🙂 I don’t want to bombard all the information at once as it can be overwhelming.
When I started on this path, I was really lucky to have a friend that could show me some resources and help along the way. I was really fortunate. I didn’t do everything at once, I made changes over time. She told me the story that when she started her chemical free journey because of her kids help, there was nothing. No help, no guide, and she had to figure it all out on her own.
This is why I decided to write this blog. Because if you have kids with chronic allergies or you yourself have health issues, the first place we should look is what is our body burden, or chemical load on our body systems. If our bodies are processing chemicals, they can’t process all the normal functions they needs to. If you have any kind of ailment, whether it be skin, allergies, anything, consider the amount of chemicals your body has to process. They show up in the least expecting places.
I’m going to try and not be too sciencey and help you on your journey with what to look for. As you start on this path, you will start to recognize some of these ingredients, be more aware of what you are using and where to go for help. That’s my intention. Of course, I am here to help.
First off let me introduce you to a couple of awesome resources:
www.ewg.org is the environmental working group. They research all the consumer products for us and rate whats good and whats not so good. From that you can make your own decisions. They even have a phone app that you can scan bar codes as you shop!
www.epa.gov the environmental protection agency are researching issues to protect the environment and the humans.
www.thetruthaboutcancer.org has some additional research items talking about new findings about how body burden impacts us and some ingredients declared carciogenic.
So what changes should we make? Lets start with one.
This is a lifestyle change, a journey. If you are game for making all these changes at once, go for it! There are some factors to consider of course, so I am laying this out in a step by step plan to take into consideration time and finances.
- For the first 30 days, change your Laundry Detergent, Fabric softer and Dryer sheets.
Laundry was the last thing I changed, but knowing what I know now, it should probably have been the first.
Laundry detergent. The reason why its a heavy burden on us is that ‘that laundry smell’ you love? Its considered the number one toxin in your home and is the highest household air pollutant.
Now, the reason why I say its #1, Not only is laundry the number one toxic smell in your home, it is that you are wearing your clothes all day, which means that the ‘fragrance’ whether you smell it or not, is disrupting you all day long, AND its close to your skin. It’s on your sheets and towels, so all night long too. Its acts like a sticky molecule and stays with you, all the time.
Fragrance is manufacture’s way of adding anything they like. Under the label fragrance, they can call it a trade secret and no one has to reveal it. Tide Pods score an F by the Environmental Working Group. (ewg.org). This is what they say: skin irritation/allergies/damage, acute aquatic toxicity, nervous system effects, respiratory effects, biodegradation; Disclosure Concern: non-specific ingredient. YIkes! Check it out here
Fabric Softener and Dryer Sheets. They contain these nasty chemicals that don’t just harm you, but they also end up down the drain, in our water systems and who knows where.
- Benzyl acetate: Linked to pancreatic cancer
- Benzyl Alcohol: Upper respiratory tract irritant
- Ethanol: On the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Hazardous Waste list and can cause central nervous system disorders
- Limonene: Known carcinogen
- A-Terpineol: Can cause respiratory problems, including fatal edema, and central nervous system damage
- Ethyl Acetate: A narcotic on the EPA’s Hazardous Waste list
- Camphor: Causes central nervous system disorders
- Chloroform: Neurotoxic, anesthetic and carcinogenic
- Linalool: A narcotic that causes central nervous system disorders
- Pentane: A chemical known to be harmful if inhaled
What can you do? Plant Based detergents are quite common now, or you can make your own: I have some Recipes here. Not only will you be helping yourself and your family, but you will be helping the planet. Think of that feeling when you shave your legs and get into clean bedding knowing that it is not harming you. 😉
By the way, they tend to be WAY less expensive. Making your own costs about half of traditional pods and Thieves Laundry Detergent last longer so you don’t use as much.
Using dryer balls not only helps your clothes smell amazing, but saves money too! The balls circle the clothes in the dryer more effectively due to their weight distributing air to dry things faster. To avoid static, use at least 3. You can buy them from Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Smart-Sheep-Reusable-All-Natural-Softener/dp/B00GA9P5P0/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1434992123&sr=8-1&keywords=dryer+balls
Just add a couple of drops of essential oils to one of the balls and add them with your clothes.
TIP: Add a few drops of lavender to your dryer ball when you dry sheets for an extra calming luxury! ZzzzZzzzzZzzzzz
Step 2 is about Cleaners and their impact on you. Cant wait to hear how you feel after a month of laundry changes. 🙂