February 27, 2012

Top Ten Toxin Sources to Eliminate from Your Life

When I started growing my own food in earnest and starting keeping chickens, it was like we had opened Pandora's box.  I started reading blogs about people doing the same thing and all of a sudden I became aware of all these other toxin-laden items we used everyday.  Studies have shown that exposure to toxic chemicals has been linked to increased cases of developmental disabilities and diagnosis of cancer.  We have slowly been eliminating them one by one from our home and our lives.  Some are easy no-brainers, some take a bit of extra work.  But I am a full time working mom, so the things we have taken on had to fit into our busy lives.

Here are my top ten toxin sources to eliminate, in the order we have addressed them:
  1. Pesticides and herbicides - Start growing your own veggies, or buy them from the local farmers market or natural food store. There are many studies about all the chemicals that have been found in mother's breast milk.
  2. Processed foods - Make sauces, breadings and mixes from scratch. You don't need all the extra ingredients that you can't pronounce included in your food. A stock of flours and baking soda in your pantry can take you a long way.
  3. Factory farm eggs - Raise your own chickens, or buy pasture raised, organic, locally grown eggs.  Note that pasture raised is different than the label "cage free".
  4. Dryer sheets - We don't really need them.  Add some white vinegar to the rinse cycle, it helps to cut the static cling on the few synthetic clothes we still own.  If you need a scent, use a few drops of essential oil on a rag and toss that in with the clothes.
  5. Shampoo - Stop buying chemical laden shampoos. Make your own shampoo and conditioner from baking soda and apple cider vinegar, or buy all natural products. Shampoo touches your families heads almost every day, eliminate that exposure.
  6. Household cleaners -  Stop buying chemicals to clean your home.  Make your own household cleaners.
  7. Laundry detergent - Stop buying chemicals to wash your clothes.  Make your own laundry soap or buy all natural alternatives. Most detergents are packed with phosphates that in addition being bad for us, are also bad for our waterways and the lives of fish.
  8. Dishwasher detergent -  Stop buying chemicals to wash your dishes.  Make your own dishwasher detergent or buy all natural alternatives.
  9. Body products - Stop buying chemical laden products and smearing them all over your skin where they are readily absorbed into you and your children's bodies.  Make your own lotions, healing salves, lip balm and deodorant.  I will post soon with my own lotion and deodorant recipes.
  10. Honey - Buy local honey straight from the farmer or your local natural foods store. There has been a lot in the news lately about less than pure-not-really-honey sourced from Asia.
Obviously,  you do not need to follow the same order, however, this order corresponds pretty closely to how easy they were to implement based on cost and time. Except for the chickens.  Starting your own flock has some up front costs and time associated with it.  On a daily basis though, we only spend a few minutes a day tending to them.  And the honey, I have found that if I buy honey by the half gallon from a local producer, I can get it at the same price (or less) as you would pay at the store for the same size.  Soon, hopefully this year, we will have our own honeybees.

dreaming of summer

1 comment:

  1. We have eliminated most of these items as well. The one area I can't seem to find a good alternative is the shampoo. I've tried all the natural and organic and homemade recipes which leave my hair falling out in handfuls.