When it comes to healthy living, keeping a clean home is an important factor. With cold and flu season right around the corner, there are many reasons why you should be keeping germs away and sticking to your vitamin dosage.
However, although almost all cleansers on the market can kill off germs and bacteria, not every product you find on the shelves may be a healthy alternative for your family. Toxins, heavy metals and chemicals can be found in many mainstream cleansers at your local market, so it is important to know which ones belong under your kitchen sink.
Harsh cleansers and your health
Not all cleaning supplies are created equal, especially when it comes to your health. Environmental Working Group investigated more than 2,000 cleaning supplies found in American stores and determined that many of these products can pose serious health risks.
For example, fumes from several cleaning supplies were found to develop asthma in healthy adults. Their investigation also highlighted a New York State Department of Health study that discovered children born to women who worked around these supplies had an elevated risk of birth defects. Several harsh cleaners were also found to cause severe allergies, skin irritations and even include cancer-causing carcinogens.
Harsh cleansers and the environment
These products aren't just bad for your home, they can also wreak havoc on rivers, air and soil. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, harsh cleansers that make their way into drains, and eventually rivers, can cause severe reproductive effects on wildlife and negatively affect water quality.
What you can do
Unfortunately, cleaning products in the U.S. often do not come with efficient labeling to ensure that you and your family are not exposed to common household toxins. Fortunately, there are many ways you can still keep your home sparkling, green and germ-free during cold and flu season without turning to these unhealthy items.
Green cleaners: There are several brands on the market that use all-natural ingredients to disinfect your home. Many of them use natural scents like lavender, cucumber, mint and lemon, and since they have become widely popular, can be purchased in mainstream markets.
DIY: If you are feeling especially green, you can't go wrong with good old-fashioned vinegar, citrus fruit, essential oils, hydrogen peroxide and baking soda. These items have been used for decades before harsh cleansers and can still effectively clean your home today.
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