Giving our health and wellbeing a bit of a boost is something we all need from time to time. We usually focus on what we eat, how much exercise we’re getting, and whether we need to start going to that weekly yoga session. These are all good things, but how many of us actually think about how our homes affect how we’re feeling? We spend a lot of time there so we want a healthy environment around us.
Making a few small changes can improve the health of not just the four walls we call home, but the people (and pets!) who live there too! But where to start? Improving the health of your home doesn’t have to be expensive or time-consuming. There are plenty of things you can do that are simple and easy to adapt to your own routine, whilst still getting you well on your way to a healthy home. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
Add Some Greenery
OK, hats off to those of you who can actually keep a plant alive for more than a fortnight… But it might be worth the effort, according to a study by NASA, because certain types of houseplant can help to purify air in our homes by absorbing pollutants. Check out this list of six houseplants that would make great additions to any room and help you along the way to a healthy home. Think about putting one on your nightstand too – plants give off oxygen, so you can get a wellbeing boost whilst you sleep! Just don’t forget to water your new additions…
Open Your Windows
This may seem like a no-brainer, but how many of us actually open our windows every day (especially when it’s cold out)? Yes, keeping the windows closed keeps in the warmth and makes our homes more energy-efficient. But it also massively reduces the quality of the air in your house. It stops nasties like airborne chemicals from household cleaning products, and allergens like dust and dust mites, from being flushed out. So throw those windows open – just for five minutes – every day and let some fresh oxygen in!
Wash Your Linen…More!
Not to gross you out…but did you know that bedsheets and dirty towels are a breeding ground for bacteria and dust mites. Ugh. So we should wash our bath towels as often as possible, and the same applies to bath mats and face cloths too! As for bed linen, aim to stick it on a hot wash every week to get rid of those nasty dust mites and icky bacteria. And if you have pets? Try to keep them off the beds as much as possible.
Dump the Chemicals
Household cleaning products are full of chemicals and removing just some of these from your cleaning regime can massively improve the health of your home. Making your own cleaning products doesn’t have to be complicated or take up a ton of your time. In fact, this all-purpose cleaner can replace a lot of your household cleaning products in one swoop, and save you money too! And it only has three ingredients – water, white vinegar, and your choice of essential oil (or lemon juice!). All you need is an empty spray bottle!
At the end of a cold day, there’s nothing better that crawling into bed, snuggling down under the covers and getting cosy for the night. But researchers at the National Institute of Health have discovered that a side effect of sleeping in a cooler room is an increase in your body’s metabolism, which means you could burn more calories whilst sleeping in a cool location than if your bedroom is warm.
Ditch the Anti-Bac
One of the key ingredients of anti-bacterial soaps (as well as antiperspirants, toothpastes, and cosmetics) is triclosan, which can affect the body’s hormones and nervous system. We’re constantly bombarded with advertisements which show us all the different anti-bacterial products we should be using because they’re better for us. The reality is that good old-fashioned soap and water is just as effective. Good handwashing is actually more about how you wash than the product itself!
Filter Your Water
Filtered water is a better source of drinking water than both bottled and tap water. Even the ‘best’ water still contains trace amounts of various chemicals and bacteria. Consider replacing your kitchen tap with one containing a filter function, or use a Brita water jug to keep in your fridge. Bonus: you can recycle the Brita filters so it’s also an environmentally friendly option!
So, whether you open your windows for a few minutes every day or wash your sheets more often, there are lots of simple things that you can do to make your house a healthy home. And these are just for starters…