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Ditch toxic commercial air fresheners and try these natural methods for air purification

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(NaturalNews) Sure, many aisles in stores smell wonderful, as swirls of cinnamon, vanilla and fresh linen scents waft through the air. However, these pleasantries, which are often designed to reduce unappealing household odors, are not only merely masking the offensive smells but are wreaking havoc on health.

According to the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC), a great deal of these products contain hazardous chemicals called phthalates, which are known to cause a range of health disturbances including birth defects, abnormalities in genital development and hormonal changes.

This is even the case in many products that carry "all natural" or "unscented" wording. Therefore, it's best to look for safer alternatives that freshen the air naturally and help, rather than harm, health.

The bottom line is that these chemicals can ultimately enter the bloodstream via inhalation or by seeping into the skin, creating an unhealthy environment.

As such, the NRDC recommends closer monitoring and banning of such products by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Consumer Product Safety Commission while also urging consumers to simply stop using such items in their home. (1) The home is an area in which people have control over what they choose to bring into their environment, and avoidance of commercial air-freshening sprays and oils is an important way to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Natural ways to keep homes clean and fresh smelling

To keep homes clean and fresh-smelling, the key is to use natural options.

Clean with healthy, existing products

Chances are, there are already products in the home that act as great household cleaners. For example, olive oil makes for an amazing furniture polish, baking soda can clean ovens, and a mixture of vinegar and water can spruce up mirrors and windows. (2)

Place plants in house

Bringing some green inside can do wonders for improving air quality that may have been subjected to harsh chemicals. Plants that are effective toxin-removers include aloe vera, spider plants, gerbera daisies, lady palm and bamboo palm. (3, 4) So effective are certain plants at purifying the air that NASA has even developed a list of the best ones. They include some from the aforementioned ones like gerbera daisy and bamboo palm but also include English ivy, peace lily and snake plants. (4)

Essential oils

In addition to promoting feelings of relaxation or concentration, many essential oils offer a clean, fresh scent. Essential citrus, thyme, peppermint and eucalyptus oils are healthy ways to improve indoor air quality. (3)

All of these are excellent ways to keep a home smelling fresh while staying free of harmful toxins in the process. Always use natural methods in lieu of toxin-laden commercial aerosols and oils.

Sources for this article include:

(1) http://www.nrdc.org [PDF]

(2) http://www.naturalnews.com

(3) http://wakeup-world.com

(4) http://www.mnn.com

About the author:
A science enthusiast with a keen interest in health nutrition, Antonia has been intensely researching various dieting routines for several years now, weighing their highs and their lows, to bring readers the most interesting info and news in the field. While she is very excited about a high raw diet, she likes to keep a fair and balanced approach towards non-raw methods of food preparation as well. >>> Click here to see more by Antonia

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