How to get started with non toxic living
Are you worried about chemicals in your home? Do you want to start living a more natural lifestyle? It might seem daunting to get started with non toxic living, but it’s actually not as difficult as you might think.
There are lots of ways to get started on a non toxic lifestyle, from reducing your exposure to toxins, to detoxing your home, to eating non toxic food. In this article, I’ll share some simple steps that you and your family can take to reduce your exposure to toxins and live a healthier life.
Let’s dive in, mama, and I’ll share everything with you.
Remember: Rome wasn’t built in one day. Focus on each small improvement and don’t stress about making the switch to a non toxic lifestyle all at once.
It’s about balance. Most of us aren’t able to or don’t want to live completely chemical free (we need medicine, gas, etc.). Instead, it’s about making everyday improvement to avoid unnecessary chemicals. Because there are some good alternatives out there!
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Table of Contents
What is non toxic living?
Non-toxic living is a lifestyle free from harmful chemicals in your home and body.
Studies show that the average household contains around 400 different toxins that can potentially harm our bodies. They come in the form of softening phthalates in toys and kitchenware, pesticide residues in fruit and vegetables, hormone-disrupting parabens and fragrance in shampoos and cosmetics, dioxins and heavy metals in edible fish, and SO much more!
As moms, we want the best thing for our family. The last thing we want is a home filled with toxic chemicals that can harm us.
How are chemicals harmful?
Many of these household chemicals are there to help to make life easier for us, but they can be very dangerous if they’re consumed in large enough quantities.
Long-term health problems might include allergy or asthma, reproductive problems and birth defects, effects on the mental, intellectual or physical development of children, organ damage and cancer.
Benefits of non-toxic living
While some chemicals are unavoidable, there are many ways that you can reduce your exposure to them. These are some of the benefits of non toxic living:
- Better health
- Improved gut health and immunity
- Diminished inflammation
- More energy
- Clearer skin
- A cleaner environment
- Better air quality in your home
- Peace of mind
Children are more susceptible
Chemicals can be harmful for everyone in the family, but especially for our children.
A child’s brain is particularly susceptible to the effects of toxic chemicals, as they are very fragile during development. What’s more, kids interact with toys and clothes in a different way than us. They suck on it and sleep with their favourite teddy bear. At the same time, children are more sensitive because their skin is thinner, so they risk developing allergies, skin irritation, or perhaps early puberty if they are exposed to chemicals, phthalates and hormone-disrupting substances.
One of the easiest ways to avoid exposure to toxins is by choosing:
- Natural toys like wood
- Organic and sustainable clothes
- Non toxic kids products (like diapers, high chair, car seat and bath toys)
- Non toxic household products
- Organic and non processed food
How to reduce your exposure to toxins
Toxins are all around us, and they can be harmful to our health. One of the best ways to reduce your exposure to them is by avoiding or reducing processed foods and drinks because they often contain harmful chemicals and preservatives. Instead choose organic food whenever possible as it hasn’t been exposed to pesticides and therefor is non toxic.
Many of the household chemicals hide in cleaners, like hand soap, skin care, shampoo and detergent. Find a non toxic alternative – one without perfume, dyes and parabens. I love using natural cleaning products like vinegar as it’s great for descaling and detergent – plus it’s very affordable.
Toxic ingredients you should avoid:
When you’re buying shampoo, clothes and household products, these are the ingredients you should avoid:
- Sodium lauryl sulfate
How to detox your home
Our home is where we spend the most time with our family. So, obviously you don’t want it riddled with chemicals and toxins.
First thing to do is remove all non-essential items from your home. The fewer things you have, the less opportunity there is for toxins to accumulate. The same goes for cleaning. By vacuuming and dusting regularly, you’ll remove any toxins that may have accumulated over time. Use natural or non toxic cleaners when you do the laundry, dishes and clean the surfaces and bathroom. There are many non toxic cleaners available that work just as well as chemical cleaners.
A natural way to detox your home is having plants that absorb toxins. According to a study from NASA, certain indoor plants can clean the air and remove up to 87% of poisonous elements in the air.
That’s a lot!
Some of my favourite plants are the snake plant, which removes trichloroethylene, formaldehyde, benzene, and xylene, or the aloe vera, which purifies the air of formaldehyde and benzene found in floor finishes, varnishes and detergents.
How to eat non toxic food
Another way to reduce your exposure to toxins is by eating non toxic food. Lots of foods are high in toxins, including processed foods, fast food, and artificial sweeteners. Instead, try to eat organic fruits and vegetables as much as possible. Organic produce has not been exposed to pesticides.
I know that organic food is more expensive. But a little goes a long way. For instance, we’re not all organic eaters at our house. But we always choose organic fruits, dairy, eggs and vegetables.
By following these tips, you can easily eat non toxic food without having to make any major changes:
- Buy organic fruit and vegetables
- Wash fruit and vegetables before eating
- Eat a varied diet to avoid getting too much of the same toxins
- Grow your own vegetables
- Avoid processed foods and drinks
How to choose non toxic products
When you’re looking for non toxic products, choose products that are free of harmful chemicals and toxins. You can find non toxic products, from reading the labels to checking the certifications such as USDA organic, NSF International, and Green Seal.
One of my favourite ways to live non toxically is by choosing natural materials, like wood, iron, leather or bamboo. I recently switched out our plastic straws with aluminium straws and I actually like them better because they cool down the drink (added bonus).