What’s next after a Marie Kondo style decluttering? Top 10 tip for a Non-Toxic Home make over

There’s been such hype since Marie Kondo is on netflix on teaching people how to find joy in decluttering our home from non-joyful items.   It’s personally helped me create both physical and mental space in prioritize what’s special to honor in my own home.

In honor the theme of building a happy, healthy non toxic home, here’s a guide to share.  Also a Youtube video of a webinar I did recently that breaks it all down.  Enjoy!

Top 10 areas for Decreasing Toxic Exposures in you home.

Certain chemicals applied to your skin or in the air can be absorbed by your body and may cause harm to your cells and organ systems. They can cause inflammation and increase the body’s production of free radicals, thus increasing your likelihood of developing chronic health problems.

1. Food

  1. Shift your food purchases and consumption to organic when possible. It is most important to use organic dairy products (milk, cheese, yogurt, ice cream, etc.) Free-range meats and eggs are desirable to purchase as organic. Minimize the use of large fish (swordfish, tuna, etc.) as they are higher in mercury.
  2. Purchase organic strawberries and apples, and refer to the Environmental Working Group or Consumer Reports websites to stay current about which fruits and veggies are most important to eat organic.

2. Products

  1. Purchase the most natural cleaning and other household products you can find
  2. Avoid spraying pesticides or herbicides in your home or your property.
  3. For hair products (including shampoo and colors) look for products without alcohol, sodium lauryl sulfate, paraben, phthalate or other petrochemicals. Check your local yellow pages and magazines to see if there is an environmentally oriented hair salon in your area. Use Hair wax instead of hairspray.
  4. Avoid using hair sprays.
  5. Avoid perfumes or other skin or hair care products that use synthetic fragrances.

3. Skin Care and Makeup

  1. Use low-toxin makeup and skin creams (avoid products with: phthalates, parabens, propylene glycol, alcohols and fragrances). In general, skin care products from health food stores without the above ingredients are a safer bet.
  2. Consider using antioxidant creams on your skin: low solvent products with CoQ10 and Vitamin C. Antiperspirants and Deodorant
  3. Avoid aluminum-containing antiperspirants and antacids. Since virtually all antiperspirants contain aluminum, it may be advisable to minimize or discontinue use.
  4. Use natural make-up (sold at Whole Foods, Bare Escentuals®, 100% Pure®) www.100percentpure.com
  5. Use natural body lotion or cream, may also use coconut oil or shea butter as a moisturizer

4. Water

  1. Water can have many toxins and thus regular consumption of unfiltered water can significantly contribute to the toxic load of your body. Water quality will vary from city to city but in general it is better to filter tap water with a multi-stage carbon filter or reverse osmosis filter.
  2. Try to avoid bottled water in soft plastic containers as the plastics often leach into the water. Minimize the use of plastic water bottles that have been in a hot car. Minimize the use of camel-back type plastic water containers. Mineral waters in glass bottles are generally safe.
  3. Drink approximately 6-8 glasses of water or healthy liquids each day. Use glass when possible.
  4. Filter shower water in order to limit your exposure to chlorinated hydrocarbons.

5. Plastics

  1. Plastics can disrupt hormones in your body. Avoid plastic bottles and containers with the numbers 3, 6 and 7 on the bottom. These are most likely to leach plastics into the food, juice or water that they contain.
  2. Buy juices and water in glass containers when possible. Avoid PVCs.
  3. Do not microwave in plastic containers. Minimize washing plastic containers in the dishwasher under high heat.
  4. Minimize the use of cling wraps; try to use paper wraps.

6. Dental Care

  1. Avoid mercury amalgam fillings.
  2. Get second opinions on root canals.
  3. Pick a dentist who is aware of healthy choices for the mouth perhaps a more holistic or biologically oriented dentist who does not place new mercury fillings.
  4. Pick a non flouride toothpaste.  Use water pik, xylitol mouth rinse, and a xylitol toothpaste. Optimize your mouth and gut microbiome can also improve your oral health.

7. Home

  1. Use only green and low-VOC (volatile organic compounds) products in a remodel or a new home. Avoid furniture with particle board or buy used furniture that has had a chance to “off gas.” Let a new car off gas by keeping the windows open.
  2. Use an air filter such as a HEPA filter with a charcoal filter to clean the debris in the air.
  3. Minimize the amount of regular carpet in your home, or use natural carpets.
  4. Avoid using pesticides in your house.
  5. Take off shoes at the door to decrease indoor chemicals and pesticides.
  6. Change the filter on your furnace every 3 months, using the best allergy furnace filter you can find.  

8. Electromagnetic Fields / EMF

  1. If you have headaches or regional pain, decrease exposure to low-level electromagnetic fields.
  2. Minimize cell phone use.  Avoid putting cell phone in your breast or pant pockets
  3. Minimize your use of portable phones at home and shift to corded phone.
  4. Take the clock radio away from the head of your bed.
  5. Get the fields measured in a potential new car before you buy it. (www.ewg.org)
  6. Use this awesome hot logic minioven to heat your food to go instead of a microwave.

9. Home and Personal Care Products to avoid

  1. Chemical based cleaning products (disinfectants, bleaches, oven and drain cleaners, furniture polish, floor wax, window cleaners, etc).
  2. Mothballs, incense and commercially available scented candles
  3. Tap Water
  4. Chemical air fresheners
  5. Hairspray Nail Polish
  6. Perfume (use essential oils instead)
  7. Make-up containing chemicals
  8. Chemical soaps, body wash, lotions, creams
  9. Aluminum based antiperspirantsur Household Product Recommendations

10. Try these products instead

  1. Purchase a household water purification system (both for drinking and showering) www.aquasana.com
  2. Consider purchasing an air purification system. Change your air filters regularly Make or purchase chemical free cleaning products.
  3. Diffuse essential oils as your air freshener
  4. Diffuse essential oils as your air freshener

 

 

14 Tips for Detoxification

14 Tips for a Detox-Over

Our body has its own amazing detoxification system, but if the total amount of toxins accumulate to a certain point where our detox system is overwhelmed; we will experience symptoms and feel sick.  This is not uncommon in our fast paced, stress filled, and overly processed lifestyle. Symptoms can affect all of our physiological systems from gut to skin to our brains.

Toxicity comes from many places:

  • Diet: high sugar, high processed foods
  • Allergies: food allergies, molds / environmental allergies
  • Metal Toxicity: overload of heavy metals, mercury, lead, fertilizers
  • Stress: from mental pressures, abuse, anger or physical pain, illness, sleep deprivation
  • Gut related toxins: bacterial, fungal or yeast infections

It is important to decrease our toxic exposure by avoiding food / environmental exposures and undergoing routine detoxification.

When you starting a detox program, it is not only for your physical health, but also for your emotional and mental health.  Rather than fill up  your schedule with social events and an increased workload, set the intention to create a serene and healing environment for yourself to go through this process.  All of these tips can also be incorporated into your regular lifestyle.

14 Tips for Optimizing your Detoxification

1. Drink plenty of water, 8-10 glasses of filtered water a day.

2. Eat mostly organic produce and grass fed animal products, when possible.

3. Eat 8-10 servings of fruits and vegetables daily, especially cruciferous vegetables  such as broccoli, collards, kale, cabbage, brussel sprouts, as well as garlic and onions, which  increase sulfur in the body and help detoxification.

4. Avoid stimulants, sedatives, and drugs such as caffeine, nicotine and alcohol.

5. Keep your bowels moving, at least once or twice a day. If you need some help, take two tablespoons of ground flax seeds, probiotics and 400mg of magnesium citrate capsules

6. Sleep 7-8 hours per night, preferably between 10pm – 2am

7. Walk or Exercise for 30 minutes, five days a week with a rotation of stretching, cardio and weight training.

8. Remove all refined carbohydrates: white sugar, flour, bread, pasta

9. Sweat at least 3 times a week, using exercise or a sauna, steam or hot detox bath (1 cup epsom salt, 2 tbsp baking soda, lavender oil).

10. Eat regular small meals with snacks in between to avoid low blood sugar.  Drink a high quality protein shake (Metagenics’ UltraClear) in between meals.

11. Schedule time to relax deeply every day so your body can rest and rejuvenate

12. Start a mindfulness practice or meditate daily:  do deep breathing exercise for 5 minutes 1-2 times a day. You can try inhaling through your nose for 4 counts, holding for 7 counts and exhaling through your mouth or nose for 8 counts as a starter.

13. Journal every day.  Write down any emotional along with physical reactions that come up.

14. Keep track of your Before and After symptoms by using a tool such as the How Toxic Are You Survey, or simply write down any symptoms such as headache, abdominal bloating, pain, rash, etc and rate the severity.

What have you tried recently to help decrease your toxic load?  Share your success stories or tips.

To a partnership of Health, Happiness and Holistic Endeavors.

Onna Lo, MD.