We welcome back healthy friend Katie Sayad: Holistic Health Coach, Yoga Instructor, and blogger, for part two of her "Decluttering" series. (Click here for part 1.) Without further ado, let's dive into "Detox Around Your Home".
Now that we're spending a bit more time at home, use this opportunity to take a deeper look around your home. Don't just look for clutter, but also for the toxins hidden throughout your home. Chemicals are essentially everywhere! Some are harmless, but some chemicals can harm your health if too much get in your body.
A recent study, conducted by Dr. Ami Zota and her team at George Washington University, discovered 45 different chemicals commonly found in dust within homes. Many of these identified chemicals belong to a group called endocrine disruptors (1). “When endocrine disruptors get into your body, they can mimic or block the natural hormones your body makes,” stated Dr. Ami Zota and her team (1). Your body’s hormonal state is essential because hormones act as messengers that send signals, allowing communication across your body, so the body can carry out processes you need to survive.
Don’t fret yet! You can easily take action to combat these pesky chemicals to keep you and your family safe, and your hormones in line. Try these simple tricks to lower your exposure...

Detoxify Your Cleaning

Woman in Red T-shirt and White Pants Holding Man in White Dress Shirt

Hundreds of chemicals can be classified as fragrance, so when you use a cleaner with a scent, most likely it has phthalates in it. Phthalates are a family of man-made chemicals. Exposure has been linked to reproductive and developmental problems (1). Therefore, it's important to learn the ingredients of household products you purchase, so you can make informed decisions that promote health and wellbeing.
Tip: Look for “fragrance-free” or products that use essential oils instead. Luckily, Fruitful Yield has a wide selection of natural alternatives and DIY ingredients to liven up your home in a more healthy and safe way! Check out the ideas below:

Declutter Your Cleaning Products

Walking into most grocery stores, you’ll find a large section dedicated to household cleaning supplies. The options are many to say the least, with each claiming they do a different thing for each type of surface and fabric in your home. But, when approached with decluttering in mind, some of these options become unnecessary.
A quick look at the ingredients lurking within these cleaning products reveals more than just blue skies and sunshine. When the Toxic Substances Control Act was passed in 1976, it allowed 62,000 chemicals to stay on the market without testing. Since then, another 20,000 chemicals have been added. How many have been tested? About 200. How many are regulated? Five (2). As a result, we are flushing synthetic chemicals down our drains, filling our homes with fumes, and wreaking havoc on our hands and nasal passages. All the while, we are exposing ourselves to possible carcinogens.
While cleaning is work, takes time and a bit of elbow grease, it doesn’t have to include an army of synthetic products. A cabinet stocked with a few cleaning basics is accessible--even attractive. Consider the beauty and utility of everyday cleaning supplies. Challenge yourself to only keep one medium-sized basket of cleaning supplies under your kitchen sink.
Here are the cleaning essentials:
Lemon: Be sure to keep one in your fridge, not under your sink! It deodorizes and cuts down grease.
Baking Soda: There’s not much that it can’t do! It deodorizes and shines best on stainless steel.
• White Distilled Vinegar: Diluted in a solution of half water, half vinegar, it can be used as an all-purpose cleaner. Added to laundry, it works as fabric softener.
• Castile Soap: It's useful for all kinds of cleaning! It also make a great alternative to dishwasher soap which often contains petroleum products. We carry Dr. Bronners and Alpine options! 
Essential Oils: These are highly concentrated extractions made from flowers, fruits, leaves, roots, and trees. Anti-Bacterial EOs include: Chamomile and Tea Tree. Deodorizing EOs include: Eucalyptus and Lemon.

Let Nature Breathe Life into Your Home

Rather than seeking the next new scent to freshen up the smell in your home, try going to nature instead. Studies show that simply opening a window can greatly improve the air quality in your home. Letting fresh air in can help break up some of the toxins and dust built up in pesky corners of your home. Not only can the air quality improve, but hearing the sounds of nature, like birds chirping and the wind blowing, can have calming effects on body and mind.
Tip: Bring more nature into your home by adding some houseplants. Plants are nature’s premier air cleaners. They absorb air-polluting toxins, produce life-giving oxygen, boost mood, sharpen focus, and add a little feng shui to your home. Try the following plants that don’t require too much attention:
  • Garden Mums
  • Peace Lilies
  • ZZ Plants
  • African Violets
  • Basil
  • Oregano
  • Parsley

Decluttering Ever After

Brown Wooden Table Near Window

These tools are simple and attainable for everyone. It's not about throwing away everything and starting from scratch. That would be working backwards essentially. But it is about being conscious and taking responsibility of what you let into your life to positively serve you – to serve your health, wellbeing, home, and your relationships. Basically, to serve you in ALL that you do.
Decluttering your space means looking carefully at what you have and making decisions about what you should keep, and then taking steps to eliminate the rest. The result? Creating a space that feels safe, comfortable, and brings you joy. It is both empowering and crucial for living a healthy and happy life.
Sources:
1. https://newsinhealth.nih.gov/2016/12/making-healthier-home
2. http://www.nrdc.org/health/toxins.asp

About the Author
Katie Sayad is a certified holistic health coach and yoga teacher. As a health professional, she offers coaching and yoga through her sessions and her stress-management wellness program, The Decluttered You Initiative. She is on a mission to improve the health and wellbeing of busy professionals by helping them to declutter all spaces of their lives – their environments, their bodies, and their minds. This is a journey to help them navigate the stressors of modern-day living, seize back the enjoyment of life, and uncover their authentic selves along the way.
You can learn more about Katie’s work or schedule a health and home consultation through her website: http://katiesayad.liveeditaurora.com/.