I'm a big believer in the "small things". It's most often those little every day habits that affect us the most! This applies to healthy living, exercise, nutrition, mental health, chronic illness... and just about everything else. I have experienced first hand how much the small things matter.
On the flip side, there are lots of not-so-good small things that can cause us some trouble. Our modern life is so full of chemicals, toxins, and modified foods. These microscopic toxins can start adding up in our body's systems. We can end up with chronic illness, inflammation, mental health issues, fatigue and more. Not to mention a feeling of "bleehh"! This toxin buildup can happen slowly, and often without us noticing.
Our bodies are truly amazing and have wonderful antioxidant abilities - but there are many things we can do to help minimize that buildup, and take some of that stress off of our body. Here are 5 things you can start doing right now!
Organic and Non GMO eating. You've probably seen the labels on a lot of food these days advertised as Organic or Non GMO. Do you know the difference? Organic food means that it is made with ingredients which were not sprayed with chemicals such as pesticides and chemical fertilizers. These nasty chemicals are absorbed into the crops that we use for food, and small amounts stick around and end up in your body! This is why I suggest buying as much organic food as possible. It might seem daunting to make the switch, so go slowly if you need to. As in everything I teach, this isn't an "all or nothing" deal. Do the best you can, and it will make a difference!
So let's talk about Non GMO for a second. GMO stands for "genetically modified organism". These are plants or animals that have been genetically changed in a labratory to produce better results. For example, a genetically modified strawberry plant will produce much larger strawberries and be more disease resistant. It sounds good at first, and has been helpful in impoverished parts of the world. However, GMOs are harder for our bodies to digest and could cause other health issues that we're not even aware of. This is why non GMO is best! It's probably helpful to remind you that any Organic food will also be Non GMO.
Plastics. This is something you can even start working on TODAY! Many concerns have been noticed when it comes to plastic, and especially heated plastics. When heated, they can release small amounts of toxins which can go straight into your food. So, a good way to start reducing plastic toxins is to avoid heating food in plastic containers in the microwave. Get out a glass or paper plate instead! I also recommend switching water bottles and tupperware containers to glass as you are able. Stainless waterbottles such as Hydroflask are also a great option.
Water. We need to be drinking lots of water to stay healthy! It's a good idea to get a filter for your drinking water, which will help further eliminate things like chlorine, which is added to kill harmful bacteria. Some filters can also reduce other contaminants such as lead, benzene, MTBE, chloramines, and PCBs. Here are a few types of water filters that I suggest:
Pitchers or large dispensers: Typically fitted with an activated carbon filter that can remove contaminants and improve taste and odor. Many can reduce chlorine, lead, and mercury. They’re easy to use, don’t requireinstallation and can be stored in the refrigerator.
TOP PICK: Clear2O Water Filtration Pitcher
Faucet-mounted filters: Attach directly to the end of the faucet with an on/off switch. Faucet-mounted units can be convenient for households that drink more filtered water than a pitcher. These styles typically use anactivated carbon filter that can remove contaminants and improve taste and odor. Many can reduce chlorine, lead, and mercury.
TOP PICK: Culligan Faucet Filter FM-15A.
Countertop filters: Typically sit on the counter, with a line connecting directly to the faucet. A diverter valve allows you to switch between filtered and unfiltered water. You collect filtered water from an extra spout or faucet on the filter unit. Models use a range of technologies, including activated carbon and reverse osmosis. Effectiveness varies widely between models, but many on-counter filters will reduce a wide array of contaminants.
TOP PICK: AquaCera HCS Countertop Water Filter with CeraMetix Filter
Under-sink filters: Mounted underneath the kitchen sink, where they are fitted into the water supply line. Some models have a separate spout or faucet for water collection. Models use a range of technologies, including activated carbon to reverse osmosis. Effectiveness varies widely between models, but many under-sink filters will reduce a wide array of contaminants. They are ideal for filtering both drinking and cooking water.
TOP PICK: Whirlpool Reverse Osmosis Filtration System WHER25
Beauty Products. It's crazy how many harmful ingredients are put into the products that we use every single day! I'm not trying to stress you out, but it's good to be aware of ingredients that you might want to avoid. I love the EWG Skin Deep database which has a ranking system for "cleanliness" of products. If you have a question about a product or ingredient that you use, you can search the database or enter the ingredients here. You can also check out EWG's Top Tips for getting started with cleaner products.
Right off the bat, you might start out with products that are free from parabens, sulfates, phthalates, triclosan, oxybenzone, BHA, and anything with "fragrance". ("fragrance" indicates a mixture of chemicals which normally include parabens. If a company writes "fragrance", they aren't really disclosing what is IN the fragrance.)
I'd like to mention that it seems like switching beauty products might be very expensive. First, I always encourage my clients to do what they can. Maybe next time you run out of something, consider trying a product from the EWG database to replace it! Second, in the end, most cleaner products end up having fewer ingredients and you can find them for great prices. I love vitacost.com, attitudeliving.com, w3llpeople.com, and justthegoods.net for affordable and safe products!
Household Products. Similarly, many of our household products contain a lot of nasty stuff that is just unnecessary. EWG has a database here for cleaning supplies. This includes things like laundry detergent, countertop cleaners, disinfectants, and more. As I've mentioned before, don't get overwhelmed with the proccess, and do what you can!
So, here are 5 things you can do to start cutting down on those nasty chemicals, toxins, and other crap that we're exposed to on a daily basis! I might have said this too many times in this post, but I really want to stress the idea that you just do the best you can. Don't obsess, don't worry, don't overspend, and don't stop living your life! I try to do all of these things as best as I can, but you can bet that I'll still eat some Doritos, drink water that might not have been filtered, and anything else that might come up. I trust my body to do its job and clear out those toxins, and I do my best to support those efforts - plain and simple!
If you feel like you've already got a buildup problem and you'd like to try a detox, check out this post!
If you want to talk with me more in depth about health concerns, emotional struggles, or anything else - feel free to schedule a free breakthrough session with me here. Let's get you feeling the best you can!!