When we think of health, what comes to mind is exercise and eating well, but there are other factors. We often hear about environmental toxicities and the carbon footprint. Contaminants in our drinking water and pollution should be taken into consideration when we think of health. The real question is; are we overlooking yet another factor that’s right under our nose? With allergies on the rise, as well as asthma and the plethora of diseases plaguing our population, is there something else that we need to examine?
I strongly believe environmentally outside and in our home are a huge factor when it comes to having an effect on our health. If you’re still using Tide and other chemicals as your household products, you better read up on the ingredients. Your home is your haven, but inside even the most pristine houses lurks hidden dangers that can cause disease and illness to you and your family. Indoor toxicity can cause an array of illnesses without you even knowing it. Let’s examine a few indoor toxicities that can have a great impact on your health for which you may want to look into alternatives.
According to the US Environmental Protection agency (EPA) nearly one out of 15 homes is estimated to have elevated radon levels. Over time, breathing in radon gas can damage tissue and could possibly lead to lung cancer. The good news is that testing your home’s air with do-it-yourself radon kit is easier than ever.
According to the EPA 30 to 50 percent of all structures have damp conditions that could encourage the growth and spread of bio-pollutants of mold. In warm conditions the percentage is much likely to be higher. Mold grows on the walls, carpets, or other materials and portions of it are transferred into the indoor air that you breath, which may cause allergic reactions (rhinitis, dermatitis or skin rash) and other immunologic effects. Some indications include stained ceilings, musty earthy smell, and black, pink, orange, or green spots on the walls. Evaluate your home and perform the removal.
Dust is a collective term used to describe the wide variety of organic or inorganic particles that collect in our homes, which include toxic byproducts. Pesticides, PCBs, mold spores, viruses and more are just some effects of dust. What makes dust so dangerous is that when you walk all the unsavory particles are circulating in the air and when you breathe in you absorb it.
Cleaning products are loaded with harsh chemicals and toxic residues. This applies to a whole variety of spray cleaners, toilet bowl cleaners and detergents. Some of these products can lead to cancer and cause damage to the central nervous system.
These endocrine disruptors are ambiguous in today’s environment. Most commonly they are used to soften plastics, but are also used in products like fragrance, hair spray, and nail polish.
Here are some solutions:
Purify your air quality. Invest in a high quality air purification system to minimize air pollutants. This can cut back on sneezing and allergic reactions.
Dust your home. Rather than pushing dust around, or worse, stirring it in the air, many ultra microfiber products are made to pick up everything in their path including microscopic attachments.
Use high quality door mats. A chief way chemicals, pesticides and other contaminants enter your home is through dust and dirt you track on your shoes. Trapping dirt right at your door via doormats can go a long way toward reducing dust and toxins in your home’s air.
Cleaning products are loaded with caustic detergents. Look for environmentally friendly products that contain no hazardous ingredients, petrochemicals, dyes, fragrances, or animal by-products.
With this said, it is obvious that there is plenty of food for thought about in-house toxicity. More now than ever, it is clear we must take into consideration other facets of well being. This is one area that needs a light shined on it and it is very important we spread the word. We can only do what we have control of. This is a no-brainer to me.
Maria Dello is a nutritionist at Dellonutritionals. Her office is located in Manhasset on 75 Plandome Rd.