Toxins are everywhere. They are in our water, in our food, our kitchen, our home products, etc. We are surrounded by toxins and interact with them on a daily basis. With all of the different places we are exposed to toxins, it can be overwhelming to determine where to even start to alleviate our interactions with them. Below are a few simple hacks that can be used to get started on a journey towards Non-Toxic Living.
1. Ditch the Non-stick Pans
Non-stick pans are a staple in most kitchens due to ease of cooking and cleaning. However, what you may not realize is that the coating used to make pans non-stick can release chemicals when heated1. If you are concerned with buying organic, you may want to check the type of pans you are using. Using non-stick pans to cook organic produce defeats the one of the main reasons for buying organic in the first place. Look into purchasing non-stick alternatives such as stainless steel, ceramic, oven-safe glass, or cast iron cookware2,3.
2. Grocery Shop With a Re-usable Bag
Several grocery stores use plastic bags to package your food. Plastic can interact with your food and expose it to harmful chemicals3,5. Eliminate this exposure and help reduce waste by bringing your own bag to the grocery store.
3. Switch to Pyrex or Glass Containers
Plastic food storage containers can leach chemicals into your food. Plastic- food interactions can be especially prominent when food is heated. Reduce this exposure by switching to Pyrex tupperware or storing your food in glass containers or jars3,4.
4. Eat More Real Food
By eating real food, I mean eating more fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and non-processed protein and less packaged and processed foods. Eating real food is not only beneficial for your overall health, but can also help reduce toxins in your food4. This is because processed foods such as packaged chips, candy, protein bars, etc. are all wrapped in plastic. Processed foods also come in cans. By eating more fresh fruits and vegetables (although remember to ditch the plastic produce wraps), you can help reduce the amount of plastic that your foods are coming into contact with. Try shopping at a local farmers market with a re-usable bag.
5. Get a Plant
Plants provide a great minimalist-type décor for your apartment, office, etc. However, you may not know that they can actually help reduce toxins in the environment and improve your air quality. Plants are also a relatively inexpensive decorative item. Try a low maintenance plant such as aloe vera or a golden pothos.
6. Use a (Non-plastic) Reusable Water Bottle
Re-usable water bottles are great! Not only do they help you save money by eliminating the need to purchase water, but they also alleviate the need to buy disposable, plastic water bottles. This reduces your water’s interactions with plastic, which can be especially important at hotter temperatures, and also reduces waste5.