Is Your Kitchen Toxic? 7 Steps to a Healthy Makeover!

by Ron & Lisa Beres on March 26, 2013 · 1 comment


1. Breathing in Formaldehyde? 

Problem: The average person breathes in 10 to 20 thousand liters of air per day, so it’s essential that your air is clean. Entertaining and cooking in the kitchen, where levels of most kitchen cabinets – especially pressed wood products – can off gas formaldehyde (a carcinogen) and other volatile organic chemicals (VOCs).  This can expose you to health problems range from headaches and asthma to respiratory diseases and even cancer.

Solution: We suggest a simple $4 investment to clean your kitchen air which can be found by watching HERE!  Plus, we suggest the five “super ornamentals”—plants that studies prove have a high removal of common household VOCs, such as formaldehyde (in particle board & MDF) benzene, octane, alpha-pinene, TCE and toluene (emitted from paints and varnishes) – that every home should have. They are:

  • Purple Waffle Plant (Hemigraphis alternataa),
  • English Ivy (Hedera Helix),
  • Variegated Wax Plant (Hoya cornosa),
  • Asparagus Fern (Asparagus densiflorus),
  • Purple Heart Plant (Tradescantia pallida)

2. Avoid Toxic Plastics. Know Your Triangles!

Problem: Get to know your triangles! These recycling rating numbers, called the SPI (Society of Plastic Industry) Resin Identification Code, are located inside the triangle and indicate the material used. They are not only essential for recycling efforts but offer information from a health perspective.

Solution: Numbers: 3 (PVC), 6 (Polystyrene) & 7 (Polycarbonate; can leach BPA) are the chlorinated plastics and should be avoided. For the complete list and description of each + where they are found, pick up a copy of our book, Just GREEN It! Simple Swaps to Save the Planet & Your Health.

3. Control Your Odors!

Problem: You breathe 20,000 breaths and 3,400 gallons of air, on average, each day! It is important to remove odors throughout your kitchen — such as those from cooking. Homes trap all kinds of smells — last night’s salmon dinner, smoke, pets, mildew and cleaning chemicals.

Solutions:  We suggest using a vented exhaust fan when cooking to reduce moisture and vent cooking particulates. Plus, we recommend the Filtrete Odor Reduction Filter. It is 65 times more effective than other filters at removing odors while also helping to improve the air quality in the home.

4.  Use Healthy Cleaners

Problem: Did you know that traditional household cleaning products can contain potentially hundreds of toxic chemicals – many which have not been tested for their long term health effects?  Or that, today, a staggering 24 million Americans suffer from asthma; and millions more with allergies?

Solution: DIY!  Check out our favorite 10 recipes to clean your entire kitchen using items such as vinegar, lemons and olive oil; cleaning without harsh chemicals!

5. Pesticides in Your Produce?

Problem: Certain types of produce contain high levels of toxic pesticides being sprayed on and nutrient absorption from contaminated soil. Be sure to avoid produce highest in pesticides – or – the “Dirty Dozen.”

Solution: Here at The Healthy Home Dream Team, we suggest you buy organic and, if on a budget, the “Clean Fifteen”; the produce found naturally lower in pesticides.  Plus, here is a DIY recipe for washing your produce – toxic free and cheap:

  • Fill a sink halfway with warm water. Add 1 cup of vinegar. Add your produce and soak for about 10 minutes. Rinse.

6. Get Un-Stuck on Non-Stick!

Problem: Avoid certain non-stick surface pans that contain chemicals that release toxins into the air – Perfluorinated Compounds (PFCs).  WATCH NOW! These compounds that have an ability to make products stain, grease, and water resistant, and are popular for their non-stick and stain-repellant uses but are linked to many illnesses including thyroid dysfunction, endocrine disruption & fertility issues.

Solution: Choose natural materials such as stainless steel, cast iron or glass cookware.

7. Clean Up Your {Water} Act!

Problem: Chlorine, fluoride and even pharmaceuticals (yep!) can be found in your tap water. While your local government water agency may deem your tap water safe, the list of contaminants they test for is surprisingly short.

Solution: Lisa & Ron suggest a point of entry or point of us home water filtration system that will help ensure that the water you’re bathing, drinking and cooking with is safe and healthy for everyone in your family by reducing bacteria, parasites, heavy metals well as contaminants including pesticides and select pharmaceuticals. To help assist you, enjoy this free Water Filter Buying Guide.

Photo credit: Nest Design Group

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