How to Increase Indoor Air Quality – 7 Tips
Breath is Life
Air is one of the 7 Principles of Life (click here for some Don Tolman wisdom); the more we increase indoor air quality; the greater we benefit.
Symptoms of poor air quality can include:
- Respiratory Disorders
- Stress / Anxiety
- Mental Fog
- An Increase in Viruses
So, it’s worth paying attention to the air you breathe; especially as:
- It’s the first thing you did when you got here
- You’ve been doing it approximately 20,000 times every day you’ve been alive
- And it’ll be the last thing you do before you depart.
Consider This –
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ll be aware of the explosion in the uptake of natural-health-solutions that the previous decade ushered in.
Since the 2010s arrived, there’s been more Green-Smoothie-Sipping, Yoga-Asana-Busting people than ever before and that’s a great thing!
Caring for our bodies means not only living to a great age, but getting to do so comfortably.
Gone is the idea that ‘ageing is ailing‘ and if you still believe that, you may want to re-frame it and join us in the 21st Century with this incredibly positive, body-blooming trend.
But (and there is a ‘but’) looking after your physical health doesn’t just come down to diet and exercise (although that helps enormously).
You can put all the goodness you like into your body, pack it with nutrition, stretch it and strengthen it; only to return to your ‘sanctuary’; surrounded by toxicity
Household toxicity is a thing – accounting for ailments; such as bronchitis / breathing issues (i.e. asthma), itchy skin conditions and eye irritations.
Whether that’s due to:
- Formaldehyde – (found in household products and furniture)
At low levels, breathing in formaldehyde can cause eye, nose and throat irritation. At higher levels, formaldehyde exposure can cause skin rashes, shortness of breath, wheezing and changes in lung functionCitation: CDC: Formaldehyde and your health
- Ammonia (NH3) (found in Cleaning Products; including oven cleaner)
Higher NH3 concentrations are associated with adverse health effects including irritation of eyes, nose, and skin; headaches; asthma; and other respiratory problems. NH3 is also toxic to the brain, perturbing the ability of glial cells to remove potassium.Citation: https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acs.est.0c00094
- Trichloroethylene (printing Ink, Paints, Lacquers, Dry-Cleaning Industry)
In 1975, the National Cancer Institute reported that an unusually high incidence of hepatocellularCitation: https://ntrs.nasa.gov/citations/19930073077
carcinomas was observed in micegiven TCE by gastric intubation. The Institute considers
this chemical a potent liver carcinogen
- Xylene (found in paints, petroleum-based products and solvents)
Long-term exposure to benzene results in an increased incidence of blood and immune system disorders, including anaemia and leukaemiaCitation: https://www.qld.gov.au/environment/pollution/monitoring/air/air-pollution/pollutants/toxics
- Benzene (Waxes, Polishes, Leather) – source: https://madeksholaw.com/what-household-products-are-sources-of-household-benzene-exposure/
Benzene has long been known to irritate the skin and eyes. Furthermore it has been shownCitation: https://ntrs.nasa.gov/citations/19930073077
to be mutagenic to bacterial cell cultures and has shown embryotoxic activity and
carcinogenicity in some tests
… or some of these other toxicities –
Although mitigating use of these components is a great idea, it’s unlikely most of us will ever be 100% free of them
… but luckily there are simple ways to improve indoor air quality and the amount of good air that you regularly take in.
7 Tips to improve indoor air quality
1. Open windows regularly
Opening windows removes stagnant air in the environment; replacing it with fresh, clean oxygen.
Fresh air is invigorating, uplifting and a mood booster; helping to mitigate depression and increase vitality.
2. Keep Air Conditioners Clean & Serviced
Air conditioners aren’t my favourite things, but I know (living in a tropical climate) that humid, summer days can call for a blast of Air Con.
The filters can get pretty mucky over time, so, ensure air conditioners are regularly serviced and cleaned to keep fresh air circulating efficiently
For those times when breathing is difficult, you may want to consider Breathe EZ.
Literally a breath of fresh air, Breathe EZ comes in a nasal spray, which is easily applied by pumping it 1 to 2 times into each nostril.
Great to use during the changing of the seasons to manage pollen reactions and to help relieve minor allergy and nasal congestion; leading to clearer ears, sinuses and throats.
Also in the decongestant family is Congest Ease; a family-friendly cold and flu hero.
This essential-oil infused balm is gentle yet powerful; working to soothe away the sniffles
… and for the times when you just want to give it your all, there’s the Cold and Flu pack, which includes Congest Ease, Breathe Ezy, Eye of Horus and Peppermint Essential Oil.
Add a few drops of the latter to a cotton handkerchief and use it to deep-breathe your way through Netflix; relieving headaches and clearing nasal passages for an uninterrupted sneeze-mitigating binge-fest.
Topping off the pack is Eye of Horus; formulated to pacify tired, puffy eyes.
4. Atomise Essential Oils
Atomising organic essential oils throughout your home is a wonderful way to purify and increase emotional-wellbeing.
5. Practice deep breathing exercises
Taking long slow deep breaths centres and grounds; increasing feelings of well-being, serenity and inner peace.
Try this exercise – increase or decrease the seconds you can hold for if you find it too easy or tricky:
6. Embrace Plant Power
A study conducted by NASA in the 1980s found that certain varieties of plants help to mitigate the toxicity off-gassed in the home by the above mentioned pollutants
– NASA Document – A study of interior landscape plants for indoor air pollution abatement- https://ntrs.nasa.gov/citations/19930073077
Some of the best types of plants to increase indoor air quality are:
The natural green colour of plants also helps bring about a calm environment; lowering stress levels and increasing pleasure.
Whilst the plants work in tandem with the breath – taking in Carbon Dioxide from our out-breath and emitting Oxygen for our in-breath. Greatly improving Oxygen levels in the home and enabling rejuvenating sleep – https://biomedicalodyssey.blogs.hopkinsmedicine.org/2020/11/a-plant-in-every-lab/
How’s that for all you Yogies?
The adage ‘Breath is Life’ is a key component of well-being and the more we can increase indoor quality; the greater we benefit.
With more of us working from home than ever it may be time to establish an inner garden of Eden for your sanctuary.
7. Use chemical-free cleaning products
If you’re spending time putting all that goodness into your body, you might as well consider what’s going into your environment and onto your kitchen workbench.
By choosing sustainable, chemical-free cleaning products you not only increase indoor air quality (by forsaking nasties; such as ammonia) and decrease the toxic load of your body, but you’re choosing to look after the flora and wildlife too.
I use Green Potions, which are hand-made powerful remedies of goodness that keep your home sparkling.