Detoxifying with Plants!

Did you know that the air inside our homes is actually more toxic than the air outside?  This is especially true during the winter months when the windows are usually closed, sealing in all the stale air.  Much of what we have in our homes, from furniture to electronics, creates pollution in our homes by releasing harmful chemicals. This means that every time we breathe in the air in our homes, along with the oxygen we need to survive, we’re inhaling loads of toxins as well.


When getting ready for baby, people often paint the nursery, buy new furniture such as cribs, changing tables, and rockers, and new accessories, including rugs and lamps.  Unless you’ve investing a lot of time and money, most of these are laden with these off-gassing chemicals, filling your home – and baby’s – with unhealthy air. 


This is obviously not what you want to do to create the healthiest environment for your baby, but why is it so important? Breathing in stale and polluted air on a regular basis can increase the chances for allergies, asthma flare-ups, colds, and other respiratory illnesses.  The fumes from chemicals can lead to headaches and fatigue.  When our bodies absorb too many toxins, they are unable to properly eliminate them all, and our overall health and immunity suffer.


One of the best actions we can take for our health and the health of our babies is to fill our house with plants.  Some plants can actually absorb almost 100% of the amount of certain toxins, like formaldehyde in about an hour! I have a track record of killing plants, but I recently decided that I wanted to try again.  It is recommended to have 2 plants for every 100 square feet of space in your house.  While I am not quite ready to fill our space with 20 plants, I started with 4.  I am determined to nurture and love these plants, and allow them to support the health of my family by cleaning the air.


Now each time I walk into my office, I am happy to see the plants I have placed on top of my desk.  I picked two days each week that I will check up on the plants, making sure that they get watered when they need to.  It’s also a great chance to talk to Chloe about the importance of respecting nature, as we teach her that she can gently touch, but may not pull the leaves off of the plants.  We made sure to get plants that are safe for both her and our cats. 


Here are some tips to getting started with decreasing the toxins in your home with plants:

  • Start with 2-4 plants that are easy to maintain (we got a philodendron, a spider plant, a rubber plant and a parlor palm)
  • Pick a day or two each week and designate them as the days that you check on your plants
  • Make sure that you buy plants appropriate for the amount of light you will be able to provide for them

Adding plants to your home is just one of many affordable ways that you can reduce the toxins in your home.  If you’d like to learn more about what you can do to reduce the toxic load in your home and in your body, send me an email at xandra dot oneill at gmail dot com.

I’d love to hear what plants you decide to try or already have in your home! Please share by posting a comment below!


Peace, Love, and Wellness,

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