Monday, May 28, 2012

Still spring cleaning? Put your health first

Many cleaning products contain harsh
chemicals and irritants, experts warn.
When it’s time to get rid of all that accumulated winter dirt and grime in the home, most people want to get it over quickly and take out the big guns of cleaning products.

But beware; many commercial cleaning products contain harsh chemicals and VOCs that can contribute to indoor air pollution and may affect your health and well-being.

The list of potentially harmful ingredients includes:

Nonylphenol ethoxylates (NPEs)
NPEs are common chemicals found in many cleaning products such as stain removers, detergents, citrus cleaners and disinfectants. According to the EPA, the chemicals can pollute the environment and they have been detected in human breast milk, blood, and urine. Studies have linked exposure to reproductive and developmental effects in rodents.

A common ingredient in floor, bathroom, tile and glass cleaners, it’s a respiratory irritant that can produce poisonous gas when mixed with chlorine bleach.

Active ingredients called disinfectants include chlorine bleach, alcohol, quaternary compounds, pine oil and ethyl alcohol, which can be found in many household cleaning products and “antibacterial” products. Many of these chemical compounds are classified as pesticides and health hazards.

A product’s fragrance can be made up of hundreds of different chemicals, but which ones are often a mystery or so-called trade secret. Fragrance found in cleaners, detergents and air fresheners can be irritating to people’s eyes and respiratory tract.

A chemical found in furniture and floor polish as well as gas cleaners; overexposure can cause headaches, nausea and central nervous system symptoms.

Experts suggest going for more eco-friendly and greener alternatives whenever possible, but those who don’t want to spend the extra money can also make their own cleaners from non-toxic ingredients such as vinegar + water + biodegradable soap, baking soda, lemon juice, hydrogen peroxide and some essential oils.

Suggestions and ideas are available at Consumer Reports

Source: Las Cruces Sun-News

Air purifiers remove harmful chemicals and pollutants

Cleaning products are not the only source of pollutants in the home – many airborne chemicals and VOCs come from building materials, furniture, electronic equipment, personal care products and other sources.

Making healthier choices like non-toxic cleaning products can make a difference in the air quality, but a portable air purifier with activated carbon and HEPA air filters will provide around-the-clock protection from common household pollutants.

AllerAir’s air purifiers feature a deep-bed activated carbon filter to remove chemicals, gases, odors and fumes, a HEPA filter for particles and dust and optional UV germicidal filtration to neutralize biological contaminants such as bacteria, viruses and mold.

AllerAir offers portable air purifiers as well as whole home systems.

For more information and personalized recommendations, contact AllerAir.

1 comment:

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