Limiting Toxins to Improve Air Quality
There is little that can impact health as much as the air we breathe – make 2018 the year you’re more cognsant of toxins in the air. Often the focus is put on outdoor air quality but the truth is Americans spend an estimated 90 percent of their time indoors. Poor indoor air quality can cause such serious illnesses as mesothelioma – a rare cancer caused by inhalation of asbestos fibers. And exacerbate symptoms of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Comparative risk studies performed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and its Science Advisory Board (SAB) have consistently ranked indoor air pollution among the top five environmental risks to public health. Through implementing a handful of natural toxin reducing practices you can see an improvement in your air quality and overall health.
Himalayan Salt Lamp
Purchasing a Himalayan salt lamp is an easy and affordable first step to improved indoor air quality within the home or work space. The lamps cleanse and deodorize the air through the process of hygroscopy. In layman’s terms the block of salt absorbs the water molecules from the air and releases purified air back into the room. The toxic particles remain in the salt. The lit salt crystal clears the air naturally of allergens like smoke, pet dander, pollens, and other air pollutants. Additionally, it dilutes odors so that you can breathe easier. People with asthma often find it helpful in reducing their symptoms. You can keep the lamp lit for as long as you like to maintain this purifying effect.
Switching out the candles in your home – which are most likely the more common paraffin candles – can improve the air you breathe. Beeswax candles purify the air in a similar fashion as the Himalayan salt lamp. Both the salt lamp and the candles release negative ions into the air. These negative ions can bind with toxins and help remove them from the air. Beeswax candles are often especially helpful for those with asthma or allergies and they are effective at removing common allergens like dust and dander from the air.
Bamboo charcoal is odorless and highly-absorptive. Packaged in a linen bag the charcoal works to absorb unpleasant odors, remove bacteria, harmful pollutants, and allergens. Additionally, the charcoal absorbs moisture, preventing the growth of mold and mildew. The air purifying bag has been scientifically proven to reduce the amount of formaldehyde, ammonia, benzene, and chloroform gases emitted from everyday items such as paint, carpeting, furniture, air fresheners, chemical cleaners, rubber, and plastics. The bags are safe and effective to use for up to two years. Each month simply place the bags in the sun to rejuvenate the charcoal and it’s air purifying powers.
A plant’s photosynthesis process naturally purifies the air but some plants air purification powers are stronger than others. According to a study conducted by NASA certain plants are better at eliminating significant amounts of benzene, formaldehyde and trichloroethylene than others. Based on their findings the top workhorse plants for air purification are Golden Pothos, Peace Lily, Boston Fern, Snake Plant, English Ivy, Dracaena, Bamboo Palm, Dragon Tree, Lady Palm and the Spider Plant. You should have at least one plant per 100 square feet of home to accomplish the most efficient air cleaning.
Indoor air quality has been known to be two to five times more polluted than outdoor air. The three most deadly pollutants inside the home are; carbon monoxide, which kills 400 individuals annually; secondhand smoke; and radon gas, which is the second biggest cause of lung cancer after cigarette smoke. Through the steps listed above you can protect yourself and your families from some of the most dangerous toxins that impact your homes air quality.
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