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Published on February 23rd, 2009 | by Stephanie Evans

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Use Natural Products to Clean Your Home

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Most people believe that keeping the home clean maximizes health. While this might be true in theory, research shows that clean houses are increasingly co-related with lowered immunity in families. The reason is that most conventional household cleaning detergents release chemicals called Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) that can be extremely toxic.. housecleaningtip.jpg

So don’t let yourself feel too good about relaxing on the couch after a day of scrubbing and dusting. Chances are that you could be breathing in airborne micro-toxins that damage your health over the long term.  So much for the assumption that a clean house makes a healthy house!

According to the EPA (http://www.epa.gov/iaq/voc.html), levels of indoor pollutants are much higher than those outside.  This is largely due to VOCs that evaporate into the environment from the ingredients in chemical cleaning products. Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are emitted as gases from certain solids or liquids. VOCs are emitted by a wide array of products numbering in the thousands. Examples include paints and lacquers, paint strippers, cleaning supplies, disinfectants, aerosol sprays, air fresheners and moth repellants.

It is not as easy to replace things like paints and lacquers unless you are willing to re-decorate your house with non toxic colors.  But when it comes to cleaning, you can make changes quickly and effectively. 

Buy Natural, Non-Toxic Cleaning Products
There are plenty of commercial cleaning products out there that use natural ingredients such as lemon, vinegar and baking soda to wipe away dust and grease just as effectively but without any toxic side effects. Environmentally friendly brands like Seventh Generation (www.seventhgeneration.com) and Method (www.methodhome.com) are safe for your home and your health.

Use Natural Cleaning Products
Since the ingredients used in natural cleaning products are those that you probably already have in your fridge or pantry, consider using them directly for your cleaning. Baking soda mixed with water is perfect for scrubbing the bath tub; oliveo il and lemon juice are great for polishing wood furniture; and vinegar is perfect for destroying molds.  If you would like to make your own natural cleaning products then check out an array of DIY natural cleaning recipes at www.reenita.com.
 
So if the health of your family is your primary objective then consider tossing out the toxic cleaning detergents (responsibly of course so that they don’t end up in landfill where they can pollute the environment) that you have been using for years and replace them with natural, non toxic alternatives.

 Article Contributors: Reenita Malhotra 





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5 Responses to Use Natural Products to Clean Your Home

  1. KellyGreen says:

    Also, try to use recycled cleaning products. I’m talking about used old t-shirts for rags, toothbrushes for scrubbing, etc. Some companies even started using recycled materials to make products. One of the best products I’ve seen made from recycled materials is the Fur-Zoff. It removes pet hair from furniture, clothes, and cars very easily. Not as wasteful as a lint roller either! A Fur-Zoff only costs $10 and lasts forever — very eco-friendly! They sell them at http://www.furzoff.net – I definitely recommend one to pet owners!

  2. Roland says:

    Great website, I really enjoy what I learn on here. To continue doing your good work please be more careful with statements like, “. . . research shows that clean houses are increasingly co-related with lowered immunity in families. The reason is that most conventional household cleaning detergents release chemicals called Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) . . . ” Correlation is never cause. There’s much more research suggesting that the correlation is related to lack of exposure to antigens that stimulate and program immunity, not VOCs. Certainly, VOCs are not good for us, but sloppy arguments, will only slow progress in educating others. Good solid reasoning, will win the day, even if it isn’t terribly catchy.

  3. graceonline says:

    Good article. I popped over to the web site you linked to (www.reenita.com) for some homemade cleaning recipes, but only found a couple after a few minutes searching. What did I miss? Also, I’m looking for a good, well-tested, dentist-approved homemade toothpaste recipe, if you know of one. No more plastic toothpaste tubes at our house!

  4. Jim H. says:

    I couldn’t agree more with the need to be careful when selecting cleaners for our homes, especially where children are involved. I prefer, low volatility, concentrated cleaners derived from plant sources. You don’t have to worry about VOCs and the fact they are concentrated means less packing, lower shipping (fuel savings) and ultimately lower costs …

  5. Pingback: Top 20 Home Improvement Sites: GreenLivingIdeas Makes The List! « Get Me Through The Week

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