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7 “Detox” Tricks That You Probably Haven’t Thought Of

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When you think of what it means to “detox,” you probably imagine a cleanse or diet that can remove the internal toxins from your body and help you lose weight. You see, when it comes to detoxing, we’re quick to focus on eliminating the culprits within our diets. But have you ever looked at your home or environment as a detox starting place?

Turns out, there are a variety of common household items that contain hidden chemicals that can result in some pretty serious negative health effects. So with a new season and right around the corner, here’s how to detox areas of your life that you probably haven’t thought of.

Detoxing Your Home in 7 Easy Steps

Here are a few simple ways to start detoxing your home:

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1. Filter Indoor Air

After months of humidity and running the air conditioning unit on full blast, you probably can’t wait to crack open the windows and let the breeze “clean” the house. Unfortunately, that means letting a barrage of allergens and environmental toxins blow through your home as well. Replacing your air filter frequently is one easy way to combat toxins and allergens in indoor air, and improve indoor air quality. Another is to add extra filtration with a portable air filter. Check out a top-rated air filtration system here.

2. Use Natural Air Fresheners

Instead of masking odors by using candles and air fresheners, which can actually introduce more toxins into the air, try eliminating them by using baking soda. To get that pretty smell you love, try naturally derived alternatives such as simmering a bowl of potpourri on the stove or using essential oils. Plus, essential oils and aromatherapy scents boast some pretty remarkable health benefits including everything from helping to boost mental performance to reducing stress.

Another excellent natural air freshener is to bring the outdoors indoors this season with purifying plants. Check out our article 6 Air Purifying Plants That Remove Impurities, Says NASA to learn more.

3. Drink Clean Water (Use a Filter)

Chlorine is a common “cleaning” agent used in the treatment of tap water. Studies have shown that chlorinated drinking water can negatively impact the thyroid, immune system and even pregnancy, possibly increasing the risk of birth defects and miscarriage. Referred to as “the chlorine dilemma,” a better large-scale cleaning solution for water has yet to be found. As it stands, the best way to reduce your intake of toxins from your drinking water is to use a water filter.

It’s important that you’re aware of the chemical toxins present in your tap water, and choose the best water filter for you. Discover the toxins lurking in your faucet in our article 6 Scary Contaminants Found in Tap Water, and click here for a great selection of water filters.

4. Give Your Cleaning Supply Cabinet a Makeover

While conventional products may disinfect, they also leave behind additional toxins that have been linked to asthma, cancer, reproductive and hormonal problems. And a recent study even revealed a link between a common disinfectant and antibiotic resistance. EWG’s Guide to Healthy Cleaning lists hidden toxins in cleaning supplies and provides information on how to read cleaning product labels. Try some non-toxic methods, such as using diluted vinegar for windows, and baking soda paste for scrubbing. EWG’s DIY Cleaning Guide is packed with DIY recipes for non-toxic cleaners.

5. Ditch the Plastic

Storing, cooking and freezing food in plastic containing petrochemicals such as #3PVC (commonly used in food packaging and plastic wrap) and Bisphenol A (BPA) (commonly used in hard plastics like tupperware, water bottles and baby bottles) can cause these chemicals to leak into your food. Studies have linked #3PVC and BPA to a number of health problems, most notably cancer, reproductive system damage, impaired brain development, liver dysfunction and impaired immune function.

But not all plastics are created equal! When purchasing plastics, look for the resin identification number located in a triangle on the product. Opt for containers made of #1, 2, 4 or 5 plastics. Better yet, ditch plastics in favor of lightweight stainless steel or Pyrex glass containers. To learn more about the different types of plastic and which are the most hazardous to your health, check out 7 Different Types of Plastic and Which Are Most Toxic.

6. Really Clean Your Laundry

Laundry soaps, fabric softeners and dryer sheets, particularly those of the scented variety, are allergen and asthma inducing culprits. In fact, fragrances are among the world’s top five allergens. Additionally, many softening chemicals, referred to as “quats,” have antibacterial qualities, and overuse of such chemicals may cause the development of antibiotic-resistant superbugs.

To reduce your your exposure, choose toxin-free and clear laundry soaps. Skip fabric softeners and dryer sheets all together and substitute with 1/2 cup of white vinegar per load during the rinse cycle.

7. Protect Your Smile

Most toothpastes sold in the U.S. contains fluoride. Proper usage instructions are often confused with advertising tactics, making the use of fluoride potentially very dangerous. In fact, the health risks associated with fluoride are so serious that the FDA requires a poison warning on every tube of fluoride toothpaste now sold in the U.S. Risks from ingestion include stomach problems, permanent tooth discoloration, skin rashes, metabolism impairment and acute toxicity.

The best solution to eliminating the risk of fluoride poisoning is to switch to a fluoride-free brand of toothpaste. If switching isn’t an option, be sure to abide by the real rules of use and stick to a pea-size amount of toothpaste, and don’t swallow it.

We wish you all the best on your detox journey as you prepare your home for the change in seasons!

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