It sounds like fiction but it’s true: the air inside your home is between two to five times more polluted than the air outside; and considering the fact that most Americans spend up to 90 per cent of their time indoors, the statistics are a worry. The problem is as bad for homes as it is for schools, with CNN reporting that at least a third of schools in the United States have enough indoor pollution to cause respiratory problems in children and adults alike. In this post, we reveal some of the most common indoor pollutants and suggest ways you can inhale cleaner, purer air at home. We also mention supplements that can boost your immunity against the problems indoor air pollution can cause
Air pollution comprises particulate matter which is invisible to the naked eye, and which includes a blend of materials such as acids, smoke, chemicals, smog, pollen, and dust. The EPA notes that the size of particles are linked to health risks; particles 10 micrometers or smaller can be inhaled and enter the lungs.
Fine particulate matter can worsen asthma and cause heart disease, since they enter the bloodstream and can therefore affect various organs. These materials are contained in cleaning products, skincare products, paint, smoke from paraffin candles, pollen, and more. As noted by academics at Harvard, “Alone, these chemicals include known carcinogens, asthma-inducing substances, and endocrine disrupters, posing significant health risks. Set against a backdrop of climate change dynamics, their impact can be worse.”
As noted in the book Climate Change, the Indoor Environment, and Health, pollutants such as ozone (O3), which are produced as the climate becomes warmer, react with common indoor chemicals, creating a toxic blend. It is precisely because of this dangerous blend of compounds that air quality inside can be more dangerous than on a busy city street.
Who Is At Risk?
Although all human beings and pets are at risk of disease from indoor air pollution, the elderly are particularly vulnerable, because they may already be battling cardiovascular and respiratory issues. Moreover, air pollution can make a big difference in the lives of those who have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Young children, too, can be at a particularly strong risk, because they have a faster breathing rate than adults and their lungs develop way into adolescence.
Cleaning Up the Air Indoors
The following steps can help you enjoy better quality air in your home:
Consider installing a HEPA filter, which has the ability to remove up to 99% of airborne particles. This device works by forcing air through a fine mesh that traps harmful particles such as pollen, dust mites, and pet dander.
Reduce your reliance on harsh cleaners like bleach, considering natural alternatives such as essential oils and plant-based biodegradable cleaners.
Replace paraffin candles with soy-based candles, and try to reduce your reliance on artificial fragrances.
To give your home a good clean, use a powerful steam cleaner, which relies purely on water and steam to kill bacteria on a plethora of surfaces, including couches, walls, ovens, and bathrooms.
Finally, consider supplements such as ClearLungs, a potent Chinese herbal formula comprising 13 plant ingredients that serve as a respiratory cleanser and enhance respiratory tissue repair. NAC Sustain is another good choice; it is a powerful antioxidant and glutathione precursor that helps the body get rid of toxins and fight against oxidative stress.
Keeping the air indoors clean is a matter of adopting healthy cleaning habits, using a good HEPA filter, and relying on supplements to help clear lungs and boost the immune system. With a little bit of work, your whole family can start breathing in fresher, purer air.