For the environmentally conscious, knowing what is in everyday products is an important
step in protecting the environment and their families.
Many times, the shiny counters and streakless-glass from these products come at a price
that can be dangerous.
Many people are unaware of the pollutants and toxins present in the everyday cleaning
products they use.
For those who want to, there are plenty of alternative, natural ways to clean your home.
You can have a Better Life with many of these safe products.
If you are unaware of some of the dangerous chemicals that are in products right in your
cabinet, here are a few of the most common.
Aerosols are a mixture of fine particles in a chemical solution that propels them out of a can
through a nozzle, producing a spray.
Typically, you may see aerosol sprays in the form of glass cleaners, deodorants and hair spray.
While aerosol makes a fine dispensing system, it poses many health risks.
Accidentally inhaling too much aerosol can trigger lung problems, such as asthmatic attacks
The fine particles get into the lungs and can clog them up, making it difficult to breathe.
In some extreme cases, this can even trigger dangerous heart problems.
Skin irritation is another common complaint from those exposed to aerosols.
Rashes can form and the spray can cause eczema in rare cases.
Allergic reactions can also take place in certain conditions and can cause frost burns if the
aerosol is released too close the skin.
VOCs are Volatile Organic Compounds that are byproducts of many household items.
Some VOCs are naturally occurring and are responsible for the urban smog that arises
during hot seasons around the world, while others are produced by cleaning and
personal care supplies.
VOCs contribute to respiratory problems like asthma and bronchial irritation.
Prolonged exposure can occur fairly easily because the VOCs from household products
become trapped indoors, contributing to indoor pollution.
Typical products that release VOCs are: paints and glues, cleaners and disinfectants,
stored automotive products, air fresheners and pesticides.
As with anytime you use a chemical, make sure that the area is well ventilated.
This will help reduce the amount of VOCs inhaled and also get rid of any pollutants that have
lingered in your house for a time.
You can also wear a cleaning mask if you are particularly sensitive, or switch to natural products
that do not contain VOCs.
Hormone disruptors are chemicals that can interfere with your body’s natural messaging systems
by blocking or mimicking hormones.
Also known as “endocrine” disruptors because the endocrine system regulates hormones, these
chemicals can cause a wide variety of health problems.
Prolonged exposure can result in serious health effects like ADHD, prostate cancer in men and
developmental problems in children.
The risk for children is greatest in pregnant woman and in early life when the immune and
endocrine systems are not yet fully developed.
The biggest problem with hormone disruptors is that they are in a variety of products, from
shampoos and soaps to non-stick kitchen products to canned foods.
If you are worried about hormone disruptors, then you need to research the products you buy
and, if the chemicals are present, then look for alternatives.
Avoid eating canned, processed foods and buy cleaning supplies and beauty products that only
contain natural ingredients.
This is an easy first step in protecting yourself and your family.
Although not as popular of a choice as it once was, ammonia is still present in many household products.
The most common is glass cleaner, but it can also be found in jewelry cleaners and polishing agents
Ammonia is still present in glass cleaner because it dries quickly without streaking, giving mirrors and
windows the clean look that most people want.
The problem is that it is a powerful irritant and can affect you immediately if you come into contact with it.
Ammonia can produce rashes if you get it on your skin and most commonly causes breathing problems
because it is easily inhaled when used.
If you accidentally mix bleach with ammonia, you will create a powerful toxin that can kill you if you are
exposed to it long enough, so take care whenever you use products with the chemical in them.
Vinegar and water make a great alternative to chemical glass cleaners and will leave surfaces streak free.
“Many people are unaware of the
pollutants and toxins present
in the everyday cleaning
products they use.
Fortunately, there are plenty of
alternative, natural ways to
clean your home.”
Before you use any household cleaning products, make sure they are safe and don’t contain any of these
About the Author
Nathan Armstrong is a green guy on a mission to educate the world one article at a time! He writes about how to make small eco-friendly changes around the home for a healthier life. His articles appear on lifestyle, green/eco and parenting blogs.
Have you used substituted harmful chemical cleaners with safe, natural cleaners?
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