Women For Natural Living

Non-Toxic Home

Women For Natural Living May 6, 2013 No Comments on Non-Toxic Home
Non-Toxic Home

By Marcela Owen

Why should I care about the environment? Well, for one I know what some of you may be thinking, you are probably thinking that green is such a buzz word right now and there’s so much information and theories to decipher, so how can we contribute? I feel that every little bit counts, so it doesn’t matter if you head an environmental non-profit or if you ensure to recycle into the right bins, what matters is that you take action. I can speak about why I care about the environment. My passion and care for the environment started many years ago, the primary reason was because I’ve always felt that the environment is the foundation that glues all beings together.

You may ask yourself how can I help and will it even make a difference. Yes, it will! Take action whether it’s little or big, it doesn’t really matter, simply take action. Little actions like turning off appliances and electrical devices can help save energy and also decrease your electrical bill. Or if you are not using your TV, radio, appliance or computer, simply remember to turn the power off! Shutting off from technology gives you a chance to find silence and solitude.  If you are searching to connect with others, you’ll have the opportunity to reach out to family and friends. So, caring for our environment and contributing in any way makes a difference, especially in the long run.

If we take a few steps to help out, the future of our planet can become a lot brighter. Consider the steps below to start greening your lifestyle. Take one or two or five or all, but take action! Here are a few easy steps to get started.

  1. Rethink the way you      shop – before you buy any item, whether it’s clothing, appliances, food,      clothes, just anything, ask yourself, do you truly need it? Avoid      unnecessary consumption. I’m not saying to avoid all shopping, I’m simply      saying to rethink what you buy. Do you really need it? Stuff creates waste      and waste contributes to pollution. If we pay attention to how we buy and      use things we can collectively achieve less waste, lower carbon emissions,      less pollution as well as save money.
  2. Buy locally or grow      your own organic fruits and vegetables – Do you have a local health food      store nearby? Do you shop at the farmers market in your area? Make sure to      support your local merchants, you will consume better quality food as well      as support your community. The farther your food travels to reach your      plate the more processed and the more energy spent to get it there.      Organic, local foods simply taste better too!
  3. Reuse, reinvent and      recreate – Most of the stuff we use ends up in the garbage sooner or      later. We live in a wasteful society but we can change and control our      personal waste. For example, I suggest reusing cups, plates and towels      instead of throwing away stuff. Reuse water bottles or get a refillable      one. Before throwing anything away, figure out if you can reuse that item or      transform it into something useful.
  4. Participate in your      community – What better way to stay motivated than to participate locally.      Get interested in an environmental cause and figure out your true passion.      Do you want to help nature, animals, and people in need? Or do you love      the ocean, dolphins, whales, manatees? Making a commitment to a non-profit      either by contributing monetarily or by volunteering will inspire you to      stay involved and take action.
  5. Use your vehicle      wisely and consider our planet – walk, ride your bike, use public      transportation when possible. The amount of toxic emissions in our      environment is astounding. When you have the opportunity to carpool, take      public transportation or walk, please do so. Consider green vehicles when      your purchase your next car and help our planet stay green.
  6. Reduce the amount of      waste in the world – we talked about using less plastic bottles and      bringing your own grocery bags when shopping. Why not consider our planet      anytime we shop? Think green! Remember anything counts big or small. Bring      awareness to your family and friends and support your local health food      stores and farmer’s market.
  7. Use your washer and      dryer as well as dishwasher when full – Make sure to wash full loads of      clothing to maximize energy consumption. Same concept to apply with your      dishwasher, only run it when it is full. Adjusting a few habits can help      reduce water consumption, lower water and energy bills as well.
  8. Buy local and in      bulk when possible – packaging waste is staggering these days, when we opt      for less packaging it translates to less waste. Buy in bulk when possible,      you could even bring your own container to avoid extra packaging. Make      sure to bring your own reusable shopping bags. Plastic bags are highly      detrimental to the environment and harmful to animals that end up in      contact with plastic bags. Did you know that plastic bags could last      hundreds of years on earth and also that particles of plastic may end up      in our oceans? Refuse plastic bags and contribute to less waste and a healthier      environment.
  9. Save energy at home      and work – Unplug appliances and turn off computers when not in use. At      work as well as at home, turn off lights when not in use. If sunlight is      an option, use it! High levels of energy and electricity are wasted when      lights and appliances are unnecessary left on. Making a habit “switch” can      help save energy and lower electricity bills.
  10. Take five minute      showers – Lots of water is wasted with long showers. In addition, using      low-flow shower fixtures can reduce water usage. Committing to shorten      your showers helps reduce water consumption as well as lower water and      energy bills.
  11. Consider indoor      plants for cleaner air – house plants absorb indoor pollution. A home with      indoor plants exudes a different feeling, the air is alive and it also      passes good energy. Many plants can actually absorb pollutants that      permeate in many homes. Some of these toxins are potentially responsible      for illnesses and severe health conditions. I suggest placing house plants      throughout your home to promote clean air and for your family to breathe      in safer, more pure air.
  12. No chemicals in      cleaning products – My suggestion is to read labels! It is important to      pay attention to your cleaning supplies, soaps, ambiance sprays, and any      other substance lurking around at home. Many homes contain a myriad of      chemicals. Chemicals are not good for humans, animals or the environment.      I encourage you to purchase green, organic, non-abrasive products to clean      and maintain a naturally fresh and healthier home.
  13. Turn off running      water when not in use – Make sure to turn off your faucet while brushing      your teeth or washing your face so unused running water stops. Shorter      showers as well as paying attention how we use water can save gallons of      water every year and save on water bills. Teach your kids to save water,      they will use what they learn at home and school and also teach their      friends to help reduce water consumption too.
  14. Remember to bring      GREEN to work – Consider bringing your own lunch to work in a reusable      container. You will not only save money but also most likely enjoy a      healthier (and hopefully organic) lunch. Bring your own bowl and bamboo      ware so you can reuse your utensils. Make sure to bring your own mug to      work to avoid disposable cups. Little steps like these contribute to less      energy use and less waste.
  15. Bring your own bags      to the grocery store – Remember to always bring your own bags to avoid      plastic or paper bags. Get in the habit of keeping a couple of reusable      shopping bags in your car. Plastic and un-recycled paper waste are filling      up our landfills and changing our ecosystems. Let’s take collective action      and do something about it.

All these tips come in handy for anyone that wants to start their green journey. I’m providing a few pointers but information is readily available if you would like to expand on any of these options. The internet is a great tool to search for more information. Also, your local health food store can help you find what you are looking for as well.

My goal is to have the most eco-friendly home possible. I’m constantly looking for ways to improve my greenness at home and at work. I enjoy going through a little exercise that I call “environmental spring cleaning”, but what does that mean exactly? I actually give spring cleaning a whole new meaning. It doesn’t only apply to cleaning your closet but also to cleansing your life, your home but most importantly your mind. It’s so miraculous how it all works. Clearing physical pollutants, clutter as well as mental and physical toxicity from our lives will almost simultaneously clear your mind and soul.

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