Tips for a long and healthy life – your healthy home

healthy-living-tips1 -v2This article is one of a series providing tips on how to live a long and healthy life. Series 1 – A Healthy Home

Household cleaning products

Many of our household cleaning products are a cocktail of chemicals. These can be harmful to people, pets and plants. Long term use will lead to a build up of toxic material in our bodies. So choose natural products wherever possible and definitely avoid products which contain sodium laurel sulphate (SLS), phenols, and formaldehyde.

Air Fresheners

Again these products are simply a cocktail of various chemicals. They tend to be used constantly, especially the ‘plug-in’ type. Anyone in their vicinity will be breathing in this dangerous mixture of chemicals, without really being aware of it.

Try using natural products such as essential oils or floral waters to fragrance and freshen rooms.


Perfumes and cosmetics contain all sorts of nasties – carcinogens (cancer causing compounds), mutagens, preservatives and toxic heavy metals. Many products contain cadmium which has now been demonstrated to be a factor in cases of aggressive breast cancer. Expensive brands are not necessarily any better than cheap ones when it comes to dangerous chemicals. Try and seek out natural, organic and non-toxic makeup and nail varnish.

Personal care products

The same applies to personal care products such as shower gels, shampoos and body lotions. Avoid anything containing Parabens, TEA, DES and SLS, or which is excessively perfumed. A build up of these chemicals has been linked with allergies and cancer.

Minimise exposure to toxic chemicals

Volatile organic compounds is the term for chemicals such as benzene and formaldehyde which are derived from petrochemicals. They are found in the fabric of many houses in the form of plywood, chipboard, paint, adhesives, insulation and wood laminates. These products can give off a collection of toxic vapours (known as out gassing) at room temperatures or in heated homes. Such gases have been linked to respiratory problems, eye conditions and memory impairment. To avoid, use natural materials and eco-friendly paints where possible. Ensure good ventilation and allow to settle for a while before inhabiting the area.

Choose floor coverings carefully

If you have carpets in your home they are more likely to harbour allergens, be impregnated with dangerous pesticides and outgas a whole raft of chemicals, especially when new. Consider wooden or tiled flooring instead.

Cook with electricity

Gas cookers (and boilers) give off nitrogen dioxide. This gas can stay concentrated in the home, especially in our modern double glazed and sealed homes. Nitrogen dioxide has been implicated in asthma, allergies and arthritis.

Choose natural pesticides

If you are a keen gardener you may be exposing yourself to a health risk. Weed killers and insecticides contain chemical compounds which have been linked to cancer, (especially leukaemia in children, brain tumours, and prostate cancer), and also birth defects in babies. Again seek out eco-friendly pesticides or use natural pest control methods.

Choose carefully where you live

Wherever possible choose a home that is well away from power lines, radio masts, electricity substations, railway lines and main roads. The Electro magnetic fields (EMFs) emitted by such constructions can be very toxic to health and have been linked to Leukaemia in children. Main roads are a source of toxic chemicals from traffic pollution.

Were you aware of any of these issues before reading this article?

Have you taken any of them into account in your own home?


  1. Great list of things to be aware of. I definitely find scented products an issues. I also think using to many product that are antibacterial is causing people to get sick more often.

    Thanks for sharing.
    Heather Cameron recently posted..Techie Tip: How To Protect Your Websites From Being HackedMy Profile

  2. Wow. There is so much to think about here in your blog post.
    Now that I know how much I don’t know I’ll be working to educate myself better, including visiting you. Thanks for turning on the light switch!
    Julie Jordan Scott recently posted..Under Pressure: From “the last straw” to presence to service….My Profile

  3. I really enjoyed your post. I had never thought about what is in my personal care products, or a health reason between electric and gas. I am glad we use electric after reading your post. And in the future I will select the products used in my household because of your post differently. Very informative. I look forward to reading more of your posts in this series.
    Sheila M. recently posted..Winter Storms and the questions, “Where’s Santa?” and “When is MY birthday?”My Profile

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