If home is where the heart is, imagine how much better you could feel by ensuring your home is as healthy as possible. Just like with maintaining our bodies’ well-being, we can control what comes into and what is used within our homes to help our families achieve a healthy lifestyle. In the spirit of new beginnings, follow these five achievable resolutions that can make your home healthier this year.
1. Cleanse Your Kitchen
Considered the soul of the home, the kitchen is the room where families often come together. As such, it is important to make it as healthy as possible. Beyond purchasing a juice cleanser and stocking your pantry with healthy snacks, there are many other ways to create a more nourishing kitchen.
Start by targeting your tap water. Nearly 77 million people in the U.S. were served by community water systems with violations as recently as 2015, according to a study by the Natural Resources Defense Council published in 2017. By filtering your tap water, you can better prevent your body from disease, improve your skin and boost circulation. Review and compare faucet water filters that reduce pollutants like lead and toxic chemicals and moved toward a healthier hydration.
2. Bring Fitness In
Have extra space in your home and not sure how to use it? Grab some workout equipment and turn it into your personal gym. Whether you're purchasing weights, a yoga mat or an elliptical machine, having a dedicated fitness area in the home can help you carve out time for workouts while offering the convenience of not having to leave your house (and also eliminate a handful of excuses). Physical activity can help lower the risk of contracting chronic illness like cardiovascular disease, and more immediately helps increase energy, sleep quality and overall happiness.
3. Purify Your Air
It has long been common knowledge that getting fresh air is extremely important to your health. It enhances digestion and lowers blood pressure, strengthens immune systems and increases overall happiness. There's no doubt that daily exposure to fresh air is necessary. While it may be harder to leave windows open and be active outside in colder months, there are many ways to still guarantee you're getting fresh air within your home.
Keeping living houseplants is one of the easiest ways to purify air, and the right plants can even control bacteria and germs in your home. Plus, it adds some decoration and color to your home's interior. If you struggle to keep indoor plants alive, alternative options that have become popular over the past few years include essential oils, a humidifier and replacing candles with solely soy candles to guarantee you are breathing in high quality air.
4. Green Landscaping
While breathing purified air inside the home is important, make sure the air directly outside your home is as fresh as possible by avoiding pesticides when you're doing yardwork. During the summer when we open windows, contaminants like dust, pollen and mold spores can easily make their way into the home from chemicals we use to keep the yard looking nice. As prolonged exposure to these toxins can lead to major health risks down the line – like chronic respiratory disease, heart disease and lung cancer – keeping outdoor air uncontaminated is one of the most important steps you can take.
5. Smart Cleaning
Cleaning can be one of the most effective ways to ensure you are living in a healthy home. However, using common household cleaners that contain toxins and chemicals can be more harmful for your health than beneficial. The American Lung Association warns against too much contact products that include volatile organic compounds, such as aerosol spray products, furniture and floor polish and air fresheners, which can contribute to respiratory problems, headaches and allergic reactions. Read cleaning product labels before buying and reduce your interaction with potentially harmful chemicals like bleach and ammonia as much as possible.
Source: Forester Jones, Sally. "5 Health-Boosting Enhancements for Your Home." U.S. News. 23 January 2019. https://realestate.usnews.com/real-estate/articles/5-health-boosting-enhancements-for-your-home?int=undefined-rec