There are a lot of things that we hear are bad for us these days (gluten? lactose? I’m never giving up grilled cheeses) and not all chemicals are bad, we are made of chemicals! However the production and use of synthetic chemicals is dangerous for ourselves and our environment in a wide variety of ways, not least of which being plastics which we use for food storage that mimic the hormone estrogen, and then fill landfills when they’re thrown away. Cutting all synthetic chemicals out of your life is hard work, but taking a few small measures can really make a difference in the health of your family!
Here are five easy ways to use fewer synthetic chemicals:
- Try to replace all your plastic food storage containers with glass whenever possible. Water bottles, Tupperware, and Ziploc baggies can all be replaced with glass containers. You will also save money by re-using containers rather than buying plastic ones over and over!
- Cut down of packaged foods. This is not only good for your long term health, but also your weight! Try to stick to the outside ring of the grocery store whenever possible- fruits, vegetables, the deli, and fresh baked goods are all much better for you food that sits on the shelf for weeks thanks to preservatives and is packaged in plastics.
- You can get healthier when you are leaving the grocery store too with reusable grocery bags! Keep cloth bags in the trunk of your car and instead of packing all your food in plastic bags in checkout that will likely sit in your closet or in a landfill for years, use cloth bags that are healthier for the environment.
- Reducing the chemicals in your life can be as easy as cracking open a window! In a five-year study the EPA found higher concentrations of toxic compounds inside homes than outdoors, some of which that have been linked to cancer and birth defects. To remedy this problem open your windows whenever possible and use exhaust fans in the bath and kitchen. Recently, I joined Norwex as a distributor and love their products. Norwex cloths are a great way to cut down on the amount of cleaning products you are using throughout your home.
- Household cleaning products are notoriously chemical-filled. Instead of buying dangerous chemicals in plastic bottles to use in your home, buy one empty spray bottle and a big bottle of vinegar. Fill the spray bottle with half vinegar and half water to clean windows, countertops, mirrors, sinks, and more. The vinegar smell goes away when it dries and you have a clean home with a healthier and cheaper alternative!
Cutting all chemicals out of your life is impossible, however little steps can make a big difference! What are other ways you try to keep your family and the environment healthy?