8 Common (but unknown) Toxins Lurking In Your Home, And What To Replace Them With
Toxins are lurking. They are in our home and we are exposed to them every single day, several times a day. And we wonder why we live in a sick culture. All these little toxins alone or with few and far between exposures probably wouldn’t do much harm. But the fact is, they are everywhere and we are constantly in contact with them. Which means they add up and build up in our bodies. And that’s where the danger lies. So what do we do about it? Well, simply, we get rid of the toxins. Here is a list of 8 common (but unknown) toxins in your home and what to replace them with.
Plastic storage containers that we put our food in, plastic wrap that we cover our food with, and plastic water bottles. While the FDA banned BPA from baby bottles, it has not banned it from other plastics. According to Harvard, “Studies have found that certain chemicals in plastic can leach out of the plastic and into the food and beverages we eat. Some of these chemicals have been linked to health problems such as metabolic disorders (including obesity) and reduced fertility. This leaching can occur even faster and to a greater degree when plastic is exposed to heat. This means you might be getting an even higher dose of potentially harmful chemicals simply by microwaving your leftovers in a plastic container.” https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/is-plastic-a-threat-to-your-health#:~:text=Studies%20have%20found%20that%20certain,including%20obesity)%20and%20reduced%20fertility. Plastics are an easy thing to swap out to remove toxins in your home.
So what do we do instead of using these harmful plastics? Replace them with things such as stainless steel or glass. 8 toxins in your home and what to replace them with
Let’s start with reusable water bottles. There are lot of stainless and glass water bottles to pick from. I personally like stainless ones because they keep your drinks colder longer, and hello, kids always break the glass ones. Here is a list of great stainless water bottles:
Klean Kanteen Double Wall Insulated Water Bottle This water bottle is made of food grade stainless steel, BPA cap, and their Strong as Steel guarantee.
Yeti Rambler Stainless Steel Kitchen grade stainless steel and dishwasher safe.
Hydro Flask Standard Mouth Bottle Double walled, pro-grade stainless steel.
Food Storage Containers
Instead of using plastic containers to store your food, use glass. This is a great 24 piece set. And as I’m currently writing this post it is on sale! These are great because they are reusable, affordable, don’t get stained, and best of all don’t contain the harmful chemicals some of the plastic ones do.
2. Non-stick pans
Ever wonder why food doesn’t stick to these? Because they are made with and/or coated with toxins that are released when the pan is heated up. And what happens to those chemical toxins when they are released from the pan? They go directly into your food and also into the air you are breathing. In fact, a bird expert I know told me they don’t even use non-stick cookware around their birds either because it’s so harmful even to birds.
Cast iron or Ceramic cookware are great swaps to clear out toxins in your home.
Ceramic cookware does not leach toxins into your food or emit toxic fumes into the air. It is eco friendly and long lasting, so while it may be a more expensive option, in the long run it is also a money savvy option. When picking your ceramic cookware, make sure you are not getting “ceramic coated” or “non-stick” ceramic because those will still have the chemical/toxins we are trying to avoid. It is rather difficutl to find 100% ceramic cookware without non stick coatings added. But this company makes thiers free of PFAS and PFOA. This is their two piece set and here is their 16 piece set.
As far as cast iron, while it is a great choice over non-stick cookware and other options, cast iron does leach some iron into foods. The studies aren’t conclusive as to exactly how much iron. So if you are trying to increase your iron intake, cooking with cast iron could be a good thing. If you don’t want the additional iron, you may want to avoid cooking acidic foods in cast iron for long times with high heats (you may also notice a metallic taste in the acidic foods). I recommend the Lodge brand. This 5 piece set is on sale at the time this post is being written.
If you’ve been around my blog for any amount of time, you probably know I despise candles.
Most candles out there are made with paraffin wax. Paraffin wax, when burned, creates the carcinogens benzene and toluene. According to Hayward Score, “In fact, the petro-soot released from paraffin candles are the same as those found in diesel fuel fumes and can be as dangerous at second-hand smoke. In 2001, the EPA concluded that burning paraffin candles emit harmful toxins and increase health risks with multiple exposures.” https://www.haywardscore.com/articles/the-truth-about-scented-candles/#:~:text=Toxins%20in%20Scented%20Candles,are%20known%20carcinogens)%20when%20burned.
Not only that, the wicks in candles manufactured overseas can have a lead core so when you burn those candles you are puting dangerous amounts of lead into the air. What’s more, are the synthetic fragrances. Fragrances are considered trade secrets so companies don’t have to disclose what makes up the scents so we really have zero idea what we are inhaling. However, we do know, that a lot of the most common fragrances are irritants and can cause allergic reactions plus can be carcinogenic. Don’t risk it with the synthetic fragrances.
Oh this is a fun one for me. Diffuse essential oils instead. As I’ve preached before on this blog, you cannot use just any old essential oil and assume it’s safe. The FDA regulations on labeling essential oil bottles is really not impressive. For instance, I could take 5% pure essential oil and add it to a bottle of whatever else I want (again trade secrets so I don’t have to say what’s in the fragrance) and slap a label that says “pure essential oil” on it, because it does have SOME pure essential oil. We just don’t know what else is in it. And if the bottle is made up of only the “pure essential oil” how do you even know it was treated properly (no pesticides on the crops, distilled at the right temp for the right amount of time, etc to maintain the integrity of the oil)? You don’t.
Well, you do if you use Young Living Essential Oils. They are the only company that lets you visit their farms and see the process, and the only company with a Seed to Seal Guarantee, ensuring the safety and quality of their essential oils. Read more about it here. You can grab your diffuser and essential oils here. I always recommend this Premium Starter Bundle because it comes with a great diffuser and 12 different essential oils. You can read more about the oils in the kit here.
4. Fabric Softeners/Dryer Sheets
Fabric softeners are filled with toxins. According to the EWG, “Your fabric softener may contain phthalates, which disperse scent; synthetic musks such as galaxolide, which accumulate in the body; and much more. Fragrance mixes can cause allergies, skin irritations such as dermatitis, difficulty breathing and potential reproductive harm” https://www.google.com/search?q=the+dangers+of+fabric+softener&rlz=1C1VDKB_enUS991US991&oq=the+dangers+of+fabric+softener&aqs=chrome..69i57j0i22i30j0i390l2.4628j0j4&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8
Dryer sheets are no better. They are loaded with chemicals that can cause allergy attacks, asthma attacks and may be carcinogenic. Remember what I already said about fragrances. Again, you don’t know what you are getting and that is scary. The things we clean our clothes, sheets and towles with are big culprets for sneaking toxins in your home.
Wool Dryer Balls. Yep. They keep your clothes soft and static free (if you live in a dry climate and still get static, attach a safety pin to one of the dryer balls). You can add a few drops of your favorite essential oil around the last 5 minutes of the dry cycle too if you want to lightly scent your laundry. And bonus, wool dryer balls actually help speed up the dry time so you save money too! And they basically last forever so you don’t need to replace them often at all.
5. Shower Curtains
Vinyl shower curtains that contain PVC can release toxins in to the air that cause health problems such as: headaches, nausea, respiratory irritation and central nervous system, liver and kidney damage. So much for taking a nice clean shower, just to pump toxic chemicals into the air. https://ohsonline.com/articles/2008/06/study-pvc-shower-curtains-potentially-toxic.aspx
Cotton, linen, or hemp shower curtains are the safest choices. Here are some great options that are safe for you and eco friendly and wont put toxins in your home.
Hall & Perry, small family owned company who prides them self on quaity products. Their shower curtains are all woven, tassles are hand tied, and free of over 300 harmful products.
Dream Designs Natural Organic Hemp Canvas Shower Curtain – No Liner Needed – Odor Resistant – Washable (Sand)
Rawganique Organic Shower Curtains. No Outgassing, No PVC, No BPA, No Vinyl Curtains
The fact that there is aluminum in antiperspirants is a cause for concern. The studies aren’t conclusive on this one, but we do know alumium is in there, and we do know what we put on our skin is absorbed by our skin and into our bloodstream. We also know that antiperspirants block your pores (which stops you from perspiring). And you don’t really want anything blocking or clogging your pores. Some antiperspirants also contain the carcinogen benzene which has been linked to blood cancers. The FDA has said that no level of benzene is safe for humans, so I’ll pass on that ingredient.
I’m sorry to say this, but you’re going to sweat with this one. Instead of blocking the sweat pores with antiperspirants, we are just going to use deodorant. I have found two that I personally like, but everyone is different so you may have to try a few out. These are my two favorite brands and scents. I get them on my subscription order off Amazon so I don’t even have to think about ordering or buying them.
Native Deoderant Several scent options to pick from.
Schmidt’s Deoderant Several scent options to pick from.
Fragrance, fragrance, fragrance. Do we need to have this discussion again? Lol. Besides the potentially harmful synthetic fragrance you are spraying around and inhaling there are other types of air fresheners that are dangerous and potentially deadly. If you are curious about this information have a look see right here. Clearly air fresheners are not something I want to be inhaling or even getting on my skin.
It’s easy, just make your own with essential oils 🙂 Here are some of my favorite super easy, super inexpensive DIY air fresheners/room sprays.
Want to get something even easier than that? You don’t have to DIY anything. Just use a diffuser and diffuse some essential oils! Here’s my favorite essential oil starter bundle. It comes with 12 oils and a diffuser of your choice! Here are some more fun diffuser options you can pick from as well (because we all want more than one diffuser!)
It’s crazy to think that the products we are using to clean our homes are actually dangers in our home.
Many household cleaning products contain VOCs (volatile organic compounds). According to Lung.org, “Breathing VOCs can irritate the eyes, nose and throat, can cause difficulty breathing and nausea, and can damage the central nervous system and other organs. Some VOCs can cause cancer.” https://www.lung.org/clean-air/at-home/indoor-air-pollutants/volatile-organic-compounds And of course they are probably loaded with fragrances that “smell clean”. Um, again, I’ll pass on those synthetic fragrances. You need to be really careful, because even products labled “green” or “natural” can still contain products that are harmful to your health.
I’ve got a couple options for you here. You can clean with vinegar. It may not smell good, but at least it’s safer lol. When I was clearing out toxins from our home the first thing I eliminated was our household cleaners and I started using vinegar. But, man, my house stunk like my teenagers stinky feet! I ended up adding essential oils to it and it helped but then I stumbled upon Thieves Household Cleaner and it already smells great and cleans amazing! It is ultra concentrated so a little goes a long way. You seriously only need one capful in a 16oz bottle of water to clean with. (insert thieves household cleaner pic here). And you can use this stuff on everything. We use it on our luxury vinyl planks, our travertine tiles, our glass, granite countertops, toilets, bathtubs, even our sofas and carpets (when we had carpet, we just replaced it all yay!) You can even get an entire Thieves Starter Bundle or Thieves Cleaning Kit here too!
There you have it.
My little round up of 8 Common (but unknown) Toxins Lurking In Your Home, And What To Replace Them With. These are all easy peasy switches we can all make to create a healthier living environment for us and our families.