You are here
Home > Green Planet > Creating a greener and healthier home

Creating a greener and healthier home

With just a little research and thought we can all take a step further forward in protecting our family and our planet next time we re-decorate or do some DIY.

Most of us are concerned about the effect that we are having on our planet and do our bit towards reducing our carbon footprints. Many people now recycle regularly and have given up using plastic bags for shopping, opting instead for the much nicer re-usable bags. Our cars are checked annually for emissions and new models are far more efficient and environmentally cleaner. All good, basic steps in trying to make our world a better place to live in, but are we doing enough? Do we give as much thought to what damage we may inadvertently be doing to our health by our choice of furnishings and decor in our own homes?

Unbeknown to most of us, we have for years been filling our homes with potentially toxic materials that are not only harmful in their manufacture and use to the planet, but also to ourselves when placed in our homes.

To improve your home environment and enhance your quality of life, use green eco-friendly decor and furnishings. By choosing these readily available products you can greatly enhance the air quality in your home which is obviously good for your health.

When re-decorating use paints that are chemical, heavy metal and volatile organic compound (VOC) free. There are plenty to choose from that are suitable for all painted surfaces; washable, durable and, as they are completely non-toxic, they immediately improve the air quality in your home. These natural paints are also very kind to the environment in general.

For flooring, look for the carpets made from natural plant fibres or wool. Other carpets are produced using materials derived from petroleum which is a pollutant; most of us will have noticed the chemical smell coming from a newly laid conventional carpet. This is not the case with those made from natural fibres, which produce no pollutants during either manufacture or daily use and are far healthier for your family to walk, sit or crawl on. If your preference is for wood flooring, there is now a wide range of boards made from sustainable woods such as bamboo and cork.

In your kitchen, go for countertops made from recycled materials such as crushed stones, glass or porcelain rather than ones made with conventional materials which need toxic adhesives and chemicals to fit them. Kitchen cabinets have generally been made from synthetic wood and the glues used in their construction emit PVC, VOCs and other toxic vapours. There are now, fortunately, a few glues which are free from formaldehyde. Cabinets made from bamboo are becoming popular because of their attractive finish and the sustainability of the bamboo.

In the garden, for lighting a pathway or entrance porch, choose the now common solar lights which come in various designs and sizes and give off sufficient light for these outdoor areas. Solar powered water features are both attractive and energy saving. Not only are these products free to run, but there are no cables or cords lying around your garden or patio.

With just a little research and thought we can all take a step further forward in protecting our family and our planet next time we re-decorate or do some DIY.

Leave a Reply