By Emily Folk
There are many ways you can improve your health. Eat a nutritious and balanced diet. Regularly hit the gym. Avoid sodas and other sugary drinks. But did you know you can also be healthier by changing your home environment?
Your home is where you spend a lot of time – naturally, the environment will have an impact on your wellbeing. And while you can’t control every aspect of a place, there are plenty of tweaks you can make, whether it means buying non-toxic cleaners or investing in a handful of plants.
If you want to turn your house or apartment into a safe and healthy environment, follow the five tips below.
1. Clean Away Dust
Dust is unavoidable in any home. It gathers along shelves and ledges, leaving a fine, grey powder over your belongings. You may be tempted to ignore the dust for another day – what’s the harm, right? But studies have shown breathing in dust, like the kind that accumulates in your home, can have a negative impact on your health.
The symptoms you experience when around dust can vary, with the most common being:
- Eye irritation
- Hay Fever
For those who have existing respiratory conditions, such as allergies, an accumulation of dust can lead to an attack, making it more difficult to breathe. To ensure you aren’t affected, have a regular cleaning schedule, at least once per week, to remove built-up particles like dust.
2. Purify Your Air
Pollutants are particles that hang in the air, invisible to the naked eye. These particles can have negative health effects, even at lower levels of exposure. Some of the most common pollutants in the air are particulate matter, ozone, nitrogen dioxide and carbon monoxide.
Particulate Matter: Small particles made up of nitrates, dust, allergens and more.
- Ozone: Three atoms of oxygen joined together, the main component of smog.
- Nitrogen Dioxide: A highly reactive gas the emanates from vehicles and cigarette smoke.
- Carbon Monoxide: An odorless, colorless gas generated from motor vehicles and wood-burning heaters.
The best way to remove harmful particulates from your air is to invest in a HEPA (high-energy particulate air) filter. These filters can trap extremely small particles that other cleaning devices like vacuum cleaners can’t hold.
3. Buy More Plants
Plants naturally consume carbon dioxide and release oxygen back into the air. Plus, according to a NASA study, some plants are best rated for their chemical and bacteria removal ability as well as their ease of maintenance. To turn your home into an environment beneficial to your health, invest in a variety of plants.
Some of the best air purifying plants include:
- Aloe Vera
- Bamboo Palm
- English Ivy
Neutralize chemicals from cleaning products and aid the prevention of seasonal allergy by adding purifying plants to your home. Even if you don’t have a green thumb, plants like Aloe Vera and English Ivy are very hardy, meaning they’re easy to maintain and are highly resistant to pests.