Make Your Home a Healthy Habitat
A healthy home is a happy home, and in order to make your house the happiest abode on the block, there are some healthy habits to follow. Whether you’re a family of one or a full house, there are plenty of ways to make your home a healthy habitat for those living within. The following seven tips will transform your house into a home that has your well-being in mind.
Give Your Air Filter a Chance to Breathe
Your heating and air conditioning unit acts as the lungs of your home. Over time, allergy-causing dust particles, pet dander, and airborne allergens can clog your HVAC system, wreaking havoc on not only your utilities, but also your health.
In order to keep your home and its inhabitants breathing healthy, check and clean your air filter at least once a month. Regular cleaning prevents dust build up and keeps the air you breathe clean. If you notice dust building up around vents, you may need to replace your air filter or have your ventilation system cleaned.
Try Green Cleaning
You’d think a healthy cleaning regimen would lead to a healthy habitat, but many cleaning products on the market contain toxic ingredients like phosphates and petroleum. Although these products cut through the dirt, they also leave behind harmful residue.
Green cleaning products such as ammonia and chlorine-free all-purpose cleaners are a healthy alternative to chemical-heavy cleaners. When it comes time to buy your arsenal of green cleaning supplies, look for words like biodegradable and all natural on the label.
Just Say No to Teflon
Non-stick cookware is convenient, especially if you’re in charge of cleaning the dishes every night. But Teflon and other non-stick cooking utensils and cookware contain PFCs (per-fluorinated chemicals) that emit cancer-causing carcinogens when heated.
Although a Teflon pan has never caused cancer directly, it’s better to cook safely by using stainless steel or cast iron cookware. When combined with all natural cooking spray, non-stick alternatives work just as well as Teflon.
Filter That Tap Water
Just because your tap water is clear doesn’t mean it isn’t full of contaminants that are bad for your health. Likewise, if you think you’re playing it safe with bottled water, think again. Bottled water has almost as many contaminants as tap water including lead, chlorine, and pesticides.
In order to take the chemicals out of your home’s water, filtration is the cleanest, healthiest solution. If you’re worried about the health of your home’s water, residential water treatment systems are a great way to put the fresh back in fresh water even if it’s from the tap.
Send Those Dust Bunnies Packing
Dust causes allergies, clogs your home’s ventilation system, and it’s not very pretty to look at. Dusting on a regular basis cuts down on household allergens and makes your abode a healthier place to live and breathe.
Surface dust is the easiest thing to control, but the dust that collects under furniture and behind appliances should also get regular attention. While you’re at it, avoid the cleaning chemicals by using microfiber cloths instead of dusting sprays.
Say Goodbye to Pesticides and Insecticides
Pesticides and insecticides are formulated to destroy insects and rodents of all varieties, so it’s no surprise they’re also dangerous for you. In fact, chemical residue from these treatments aren’t only bad for the environment and the local groundwater, but for your living habitat as well.
Instead of using toxic chemicals to keep bugs and other critters under control in and around your home, try taking preventative measures like keeping the kitchen clean, putting food in airtight containers, and sealing any cracks around doors and windows.
Go Green and Grow Green
There are a number of benefits associated with eating organic fruits and vegetables, so take advantage of your home’s backyard by growing a vegetable garden. Whether you go the potted route or you build a raised garden bed, organic gardening is fun, easy, inexpensive, and a healthy option to the chemically grown produce found at the grocery store.
By following the living tips above, you’ll turn your homestead into a healthy habitat in no time.
Ms. Jensen is a leading advocate for families and children and was the founder and president of ACES, The Association for Children for Enforcement of Support.
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