How Your Home Makes You Sick

. . . years of research show indoor air quality is a serious threat to your family’s health

Scientists have warned for years that outdoor air is contaminated with harmful pollutants.

Indeed, dozens of the most dangerous chemicals—from vehicles, power plants, homes, manufacturing and agricultural facilities, dust, and forest fires—are systematically spewed into the air we breathe.

While extensive research and effective public policy have helped reduce outdoor air pollution in the US compared to the rest of the world, these toxins are still causing significant health issues here and abroad. In fact, numerous studies suggest air pollution contributes to respiratory disease, childhood asthma, lung dysfunction, heart disease, cancer, and even premature death.

And now—after previously classifying numerous individual air pollutants as carcinogenic—the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has finally concluded that outdoor air pollution as a whole is a carcinogen (cancer-causing substance).

Yet even more toxic than outdoor air pollution is…

Despite outdoor air pollution’s reputation to negatively impact our health, indoor air is an even bigger threat. Surprised?

With most Americans spending 90 percent of their time indoors, the EPA has documented typical levels of indoor pollutants at 2-5 times—in some cases over 100 times—higher than outdoor levels.

Is indoor air quality really that bad?

Absolutely! Our modern lifestyle—from simple pleasures like grilling on the porch to the new carpet in the living room—exposes us to a steady stream of harmful toxins inside our home. Practically everything entering our homes—even in our cars and businesses—is made of synthetic materials that emit hundreds of dangerous chemicals. With research still pouring in, the news only gets worse. Studies show convincing associations between low-level exposure to these chemicals and diseases like allergies, It is virtually certain that you and your loved ones have been negatively impacted already.

We’ve already written on the dangers of some of the most common household items containing toxic chemicals. Most are products of modern convenience that—along with dust, mold, and mildew—release dangerous fumes or particles into the air you breathe inside your home. Besides affecting a whole range of physical abilities, here’s another article that explains how exposure to indoor toxins result in learning disabilities and behavioral problems in children.

While the specific risk varies for everyone, children and the elderly suffer most. Children breathe in more air relative to body weight. Plus, they’re still building their immune system. And the elderly…they already face compromised immune function due to the effects of aging, poor nutrition, and prescription drug intake.

An even greater danger with indoor air pollution.

When outdoors, small amounts of pollutants can disperse into the atmosphere. So the harmful molecules you breathe are more diluted. But inside the home, these toxins accumulate to magnify your exposure levels.

As you probably already guessed, the winter season poses the greatest threat as you button your house up tight to keep the heat in and the cold out. Without letting adequate outdoor air in or indoor pollutants out, you can’t help but suffer the negative effects of breathing in these toxins.

Best ways to restore indoor air quality

Despite the shortcomings of modern living, improving your home’s indoor air quality is simple. It starts with just a few changes to your cleaning routine, living space, and lifestyle. Doing these can help you avoid almost certain disease resulting from the toxic overload of harmful chemicals.

  1. Eliminate common aerosol fresheners and household cleaners. These products contain harmful carcinogens and neurotoxins that become concentrated in your home’s air and quickly accumulate in your body after exposure. Instead, search the internet or at your local health store for all-natural products—or even make your own—that are safer and more effective than those brands containing toxic chemicals. If you do choose aerosol cleaners or air fresheners, use sparingly and only in well-ventilated spaces.  Otherwise, try using essential oils like lavender, basil, lemon, rosemary, orange and more to freshen up your home’s air. And, for a superior cleaning alternative, give our durable and incredibly versatile Beyond Health Cleaning Cloth a try. With your very first experience, you’ll see why it’s the easiest, most complete system for safely cleaning up around the home.
  2. Replace those unsafe personal care products. Soaps, body wash, deodorants, shampoos, skin creams, toothpastes, and more release toxic vapors into the air you breathe. Instead, use any number of safer, non-toxic products available for cleaning your body. We know it’s an ongoing challenge to sort through ingredient labels, so we’ve done some legwork for you—and offer our readers non-toxic natural products for your skin, hair, face, and teeth.
  3. Buy eco-friendly home furnishings and building materials for your home. Replace appliances, electronics, furniture, carpets, draperies, linen, building materials, and more with products certified to meet strict chemical emission limits.
  4. Buy houseplants. Plants aren’t just for providing us with oxygen. They naturally purify your home’s air by absorbing toxins through their leaves and roots, and even converting them to usable nutrients. Plus, plants can help regulate humidity, reducing the toxic growth of molds and mildew. Strategically place several of the best air-filtering houseplants throughout your home to immediately improve your indoor air quality.
  5. Filter your air and water. No matter the source of your indoor air-borne contaminants (even tap water releases dangerous chemicals into the air), they accumulate in your cells and cause toxicity and disease. You can eliminate this risk with our Beyond Health water and air filtering systems. Their superior design assures effective removal of harmful dust, pollens, odors, vapors, chemicals, heavy metals, and more…providing only clean air and water for home use.

Already suffer the effects of chemical exposure?

After eliminating all known sources of contamination, the four most effective ways we know of to detox your body are getting regular exercise, eating a nutrient-rich diet of mostly organic fruits and vegetables, using high-quality supplements (like our Beyond Health brand), and taking regular sauna baths.

If you have a compelling story of contamination by airborne chemicals, we’d love to hear about it? Please tell us what you did to minimize or eliminate your exposure…and the steps you took to restore your body to good health.

 

Sources:

http://www.epa.gov/region1/communities/indoorair.html
http://www.newsmaxhealth.com/Headline/sick-house-syndrome-conserving-energy-indoor-pollution/2013/11/25/id/538603

 

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