Detox Your Home
It’s easy to be so overwhelmed by the toxic soup we’re surrounded by – the flame-retardants from the sofa, the wifi connecting us to the world – that we choose to do nothing. But even if you do one thing, like order a water filter, it can go a long way to reducing your toxic load. Here are two simple changes you can make today.
What’s in your water
When people ask me, ‘what is the one thing I should change,’ my answer is usually ‘get a water filter.’
Drinking plenty of purified water allows nutrients to flood your cells while pushing toxins out. Your body is like a river, as long as the water is flowing, you can dump stuff in there and it will stay clean.
In countries like Australia and America where the water is fluoridated, this is even more important.
Fluoride is toxic to children’s growing brains and research suggests that the greater the exposure the lower the child’s IQ. That’s according to a major 2012 review carried out jointly by Harvard and China Medical University.
In the UK we are lucky in that the majority of water is not currently treated with fluoride, however hormones from the contraceptive pill are a major problem. More than 2.5 million women take birth control pills in the UK. These hormones are excreted and end up in our sewage systems and rivers. Even at very low concentrations, these chemicals have harmful effects on fish. ‘Do we want to wait until we see effects in humans, as we did with thalidomide and BSE, or do we act before harm is done?’ says toxicologist Professor Richard Owen of Exeter University in an article about the issue in The Guardian.
Then there’s chlorine, ‘Cancer risk among people drinking chlorinated water is up to 93% per cent higher than among those whose water doesn’t contain chlorine according to studies from the US Council of Environmental Quality.
Which water filter should I buy?
Having experimented with several water filters I believe the best option is Reverse Osmosis (RO). This filtration system removes virtually everything including bacteria, chlorine, fluoride, heavy metals, organic compounds (eg oestrogen), viruses. However, it’s worth noting that RO also removes essential minerals so it’s important to remineralise your water. Many RO systems now come with optional remineralising cartridges. Like this one from Vitality4Life.
Breathe Better Air
It’s bad enough you have to breathe in synthetic chemicals in your uber (those green trees hanging from the rear view mirror are not benign) you don’t want to do it in your home.
A large study that analyzed 74 popular air fresheners, revealed they contain over 350 chemicals including benzene, formaldehyde and phthalates. Benzene has been classified as a known carcinogen by WHO while studies show that chronic exposure to formaldehyde has been linked to leukaemia. So what can you do?
EO’s are distilled from flowers, trees, roots and rein and contain over 100 different organic compounds, including terpenes and phenols. Terpenes help remove existing toxins from the liver and kidneys while phenols – which give the oil its natural fragrance – contain high levels of oxygenating molecules and antioxidant properties.
Research shows that inhaling essential oils can help fight free radical toxicity at the cellular level and a 2016 Lebanese study found that essential oils can relieve the ill effects of air pollution, particularly clove bud oil (eugenol) nad the essential oil from basil (estragole).
Laura Bond is a journalist, author and health coach. She specialises in helping clients beat stress, reduce their toxic load and prepare their bodies for babies. To find out more, click here.