Green Cleaning for Your Home: Create a Non-Toxic Environment
Author: Shannon Miller Lifestyle
You would never knowingly place your family in harm’s way.
That is why you keep things clean at home.
We all know a filthy home attracts and harbors germs, right? Well, sometimes cleaning, even with the best of intentions, can lead to more problems; different problems that can harm the health of you or your family.
J.A. Archer of Maid Brigade, Jacksonville, explains that certain toxins within our cleaning products could interrupt our body’s natural immunity functions, and exasperate problems such as asthma. Bleach and ammonia are two common ingredients in cleaning products. These chemicals release harsh fumes that can take your breath away, or worse, cause an asthma attack. Strong fragrances in some products can do the same.
According to scientists and researchers at Gaiam, a leading wellness company, here are the 8 big chemicals to avoid in your cleaning products:
- Chlorinated phenols. These chlorines are hard on the lungs, especially for people with asthma.
- Diethylene glycol. Look in window and mirror cleaners. These actually can harm your nervous system.
- Phenols. Also exasperate respiratory problems.
- Nonylphenol ethoxylate. Look in your laundry detergent for this. It is now banned in Europe for releasing very harsh chemicals.
- Formaldehyde. Can lead to respiratory problems.
- Petroleum solvents. Look in your floor cleaners for this. Your body depends on mucous membranes to protect the body from harmful germs in the air. Petroleum solvents disrupt that mucous membrane.
- Perchloroethylene, causes liver and kidney damage.
- Butyl cellosolve. This is a known carcinogen. It is very harmful to the liver and kidneys.
The list may seem scary but it’s important to be aware of possible toxins that reside in a typical cleaning cabinet. You can play it safe by replacing many of these dangerous substances with cleaners that use natural ingredients such as Mrs. Meyers Clean Day, Method, or Seventh Generation.
You can also create your own low cost cleaning kit, safely! Great cleaning agents and practices include:
- Baking soda
- Washing soda
- White distilled vinegar
- Plain non-toxic liquid soap
- Tea tree oil
- Empty and Clean spray bottles
To make a non-toxic window cleaner, for example, mix 1/2 tsp of the liquid soap with 3 tbs vinegar and 2 cups of water.
To make an all-purpose cleaner, mix 1/2 tbs washing soda (made by the baking soda companies), a little soap, and warm water.
To get rid of mold, mix 2 tsp tea tree oil with 2 cups of water.