When I look at the changes that have taken place over the last year, I have to shake my head. There is pretty much no area in my life that has been untouched in some way or another. Not to be excluded is our household. Having my world turned upside when i got handed the “C” word made me do a lot of thinking and then researching. I think that was to be expected, right? Any crisis has a side effect of re-evaluation.
Why did i get cancer? Love to know. Definitely it’s one question that won’t be answered til i get to heaven! Regardless, I have come out of this having made some changes that could have easily been made a long time ago…I just wasn’t in that “head space”. Now I am. I won’t say that I have sworn off doughnuts, cleaning products and now life in a yert (though that sounds intriguing…), but I have switched things up. It all starts with small things, right? Sustainable changes that have now become routine.
It’s all about being mindful. Ugg..I don’t like that word because it gives the impression that I’m sitting on a yoga mat contemplating the meaning of life! ha! But it is about being more thoughtful about the little things. Weighing out what matters to you and what maybe isn’t high on your list.
Here’s my little tickle trunk of items that have made a difference in our house.. and let me apologize for this doozy of a long post…bear with me!
What you put into your body:
- I have really made an effort to use more natural products where I can. Pretty much a label reader now! The first change I made was my deodorant….aluminum is a main component of your run of the mill deodorants. Its a controversial topic…some say it’s super harmful, others say your skin acts as a barrier from allowing it to enter your body. The National Cancer Institute’s most recent article on it concluded that more research is needed. That’s enough to make me choose a natural substitute…for me AND my girls. I’ve flipping back and forth between this one (from Whole Foods) and this new product line that Pam and I have been trying out.
- 8 Greens was introduced to me by a friend…you should read this article about the creator of these fizzy tablets. They pack a serious punch…a green punch actually! Simply dissolve a tablet in a glass of water and you’ve got all your daily recommended greens in one surprisingly yummy drink. They are easy to keep in your purse and use when your having one of those non-stop days on the road.
- Tea Tree Oil. If you are going to have one “do-all” in your medicine cabinet, this might just be it. Where do I start? We have been using it to treat acne, cold sores, burns, to prevent lice (if you have kids in school, you might understand my total paranoia of that!) and any skin irritation/rash. That’s really just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to its uses…
- Colflex is our first line of defence against a cold. A simple spray that contains oregano, thyme and lemon oils to fight sore throats, colds, upper respiratory issues and more. Before you reach for the over the counter, sugar-laden cold syrups, this is a great option to have on hand. It works! PS we don’t travel without it.
- Choose face sprays, such as this one from Harlow Skin Co that are fully natural. Used to set your makeup, hydrate your face or just refresh it only makes sense to be careful what you are spraying onto open areas.
What you put into your air
- I read something the other day that I had never really considered. Indoor air contains far more pollutants than outdoor hair. Umm really?? Made me glad to know that i’ve been using my Saje nebulizer like it’s going outta style. Filled with water and some drops of essential oil blends, the air is neutralized and allergens/dust are cut way down. It doesn’t hurt that your house smell is pretty on point with it as well!
- Here’s another suprisizing fact. Candles aren’t as begnin as one might think. Many are filled with materials that when burned are akin to second hand smoke. Argggg… really?? Who knew? Kinda crazy to think that we just blindly buy products without thinking that we might be introducing something harmful. My favourite line, Vancouver Candle Company was created to stand apart from the crowd. Premium soy wax and perfume grade fragrance… they are what burns in my house.
- Plants are another brilliant way of cleaning your indoor air. Our 6th family member is Fiona the ficus. She’s not only super pretty, but completely functional too by helping to clean the air. I’m also wanting to get an aloe plant as they are high on the list of helping clean the air.
What you clean with:
- I’m sure this isn’t a surprise. I agree it’s hard to part with some of the old faithfuls that you’ve had in your cleaning arsenal for years. I’ve introduced some new ones, though, that work just as well. I like the Method products, especially the Daily Granite. It gives my countertops a brilliant shine, smells good and is safe to use. I’ve also ditched dryer sheets (that was a hard one!) because they are full of nasty stuff. Just not worth it to me. These Lavender Dryer bags from Trader Joes are great. Once you’ve used a bag 5-10 times, you can rip it open, sprinkle it on your carpet and vacuum it up for a refresh. Double duty!
What you eat:
- This, too, isn’t a huge surprise. But again, it is the small things. I’m not suggesting you throw meat out of your diet (my family would revolt) but i am suggesting that you introduce more of the good stuff. Fruits, veggies, grains…the healthy stuff. Some experimenting has blown my kitchen wide open. Much to Scott’s shock, it’s now not abnormal to see lentils, rice wraps, millet, flax or chia in some form for dinner. A couple of new cookbooks have me constantly trying new recipes with new ingredients every week. It’s been a ton of fun and I have no plans to stop. Here’s the challenge: Try one recipe per week that is totally out of your kitchen comfort zone..but incorporates plant based thinking. You might actually like it! Here are a couple of my favourite sources: My New Roots , Oh She Glows, Minimalist Baker & Sprouted Kitchen
Ok, do you all think I’m weird? I’m worried. But wanted to take the leap and share some small changes that I think will make our house even a bit more healthy. It’s worth it to me. Would love to hear your thoughts… well, maybe not if you think I’ve lost my mind! Seriously though, have you made any changes in your house in the name of health? I can’t wait to hear!