While there are many effective household cleaning products available in your local supermarket, you might be surprised to find ingredients that are considered hazardous when checking the labels. Many commercial cleaning products contain harmful chemicals such as chlorine bleach, ammonia, petrochemicals, and VOC’s. Breathing the fumes of toxic chemicals, especially over time, can be damaging to your health. In addition, small amounts of residual product can be left on surfaces or in the air following cleaning, adversely affecting your home’s air quality. Following are some important facts that may inspire you to switch to nontoxic cleaners this Spring Cleaning season:
• According to a five-year EPA study, the air in an average American home has chemical contamination levels 70 times greater than outdoor air. The EPA maintains that half of all illnesses occurring in the US can be attributed to chemical contamination of indoor air. In fact, a 1985 EPA report states that household cleaners are three times more likely to cause cancer than outdoor pollution.
• The Consumer Product Safety Commission states that more than 150 chemicals found in ordinary household products are directly responsible for producing cancer, allergies, birth defects and numerous psychological disorders.
• 90% of all accidental poisonings occur in the home. In 1990 alone, more than 4000 children under the age of four were treated in the ER for household cleaner poisoning.
• The EPA states that the typical American household is “the number one violator of chemical waste per capita” with nearly 168 tons of household cleaners being released into kitchen and bathroom drains every year, potentially polluting our water supply.
Clearly, the benefits of removing toxic household cleaners from your home are many. It is easy to make your own all-purpose cleaners for just a few dollars. It’s as simple as filling a spray bottle with vinegar, water and a few drops of lavender essential oil! Lavender oil contains antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral properties and white distilled vinegar is effective for killing most mold, bacteria, and germs, due to its level of acidity. With just a few store bought items, you can clean every room in your home, stay healthy and improve the environment.
CLICK HERE for a shopping list and natural cleaning recipes you can make at home.