indoor air quality

You are currently browsing articles tagged indoor air quality.

EDITOR’S NOTE: EACH TUESDAY MY GREEN SIDE BRINGS SIMPLE TIPS FOR GREEN LIVING TO THE CHRISTOPHER GABRIEL PROGRAMWE ALSO HIGHLIGHT A FAVORITE GREEN SITE EACH WEEK. STARTING OCTOBER 13, 2014 A NEW TIME FOR THE CHRISTOPHER GABRIEL PROGRAM MEANS A NEW TIME FOR THIS SEGMENT… YOU CAN NOW STREAM THE SEGMENT AT APPROXIMATELY 835AM (CENTRAL) EVERY TUESDAY AT WDAY.COM OR, IF YOU’RE IN NORTH DAKOTA OR WESTERN MINNESOTA, LISTEN ON YOUR RADIO AT AM970 WDAY.

GREEN TIP: With winter fast approaching, make sure your indoor air is healthy. Finding ways to sustainablyKeep your indoor air as healthy as possible improve the quality of your indoor air will minimize your health risks.

Everything that’s in our home makes up our indoor air quality. The materials we’ve used to build our house, the paint on our walls, our furniture; all the pieces that make our house a home can potentially be harmful to our health.

Pollution from power plants, cars, and other transportation is a well-known contributor to outdoor air pollution, but our indoor air quality is often worse; it can be up to 10 times worse for you than the air outside. Microbial pollutants like mold, pet dander and plant pollen can combine with chemicals like radon and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) to create a pretty toxic environment in your home; since we spend an average of 90% of our time indoors and 65% of our time inside our homes, according to the National Safety Council, that can add up to allergies, asthma and worse.

Source: Treehugger.com

Some ways to keep your indoor air healthy:

  • Maintain proper ventilation.
  • Minimize the use of harsh cleaners or cleaners with strong fragrances. Anything that is artificially scented pollutes your environment. The word “fragrance” on a label can mask up to 100 different chemicals, and synthetic scents have been found to trigger migraine headaches and asthma attacks.

Check out this University of Washington study to find out more information about why the word “fragrance” in products should be a red flag for consumers: http://www.washington.edu/news/2008/07/23/toxic-chemicals-found-in-common-scented-laundry-products-air-fresheners/

  • Garden and take care of your lawn without using pesticides or synthetic fertilizers. These toxic chemicals can be tracked into your home on shoes, clothes or paws.
  • Houseplants are some of the most effective air cleaners.
    • Aloe Vera soothes burns and removes formaldehyde from the air.
    • Corn plants remove benzene and cigarette smoke from the air.
    • Spider plants absorb carbon monoxide.
    • Peace lilies remove acetone, trichloroethylene, benzene and formaldehyde.
    • Dwarf date palms negate harmful effects from xylene (found in paints).

Source: Natural Health Magazine, July/August 2010

  • Avoid smoking indoors. Tobacco smoke contains thousands of indoor pollutants at high concentrations.
  • Don’t idle cars, lawnmowers and so on in the garage (especially attached garages).

For more tips on improving indoor air, visit Greenguard Environmental Institute.

Check out this really amazing air purifier – the ANDREA air filter. ANDREA employs both active plant filtration, along with water and soil to provide a multistage system that cleanses air from harmful toxins that can irritate and be harmful to your lungs. It naturally purifies air by drawing it with a whisper-quiet fan to propel it through the leaves and root system of a plant, then out through water and soil filtration and back into the room environment.

My Green Side’s web pick of the week:

Greenguard Environmental Institute
The GREENGUARD Environmental Institute (GEI) was founded in 2001 with the mission of improving human health and quality of life by enhancing indoor air quality and reducing people’s exposure to chemicals and other pollutants. In keeping with that mission, GEI certifies products and materials for low chemical emissions and provides a free resource for choosing healthier products and materials for indoor environments.

Tags: , , , , ,

table with plantEDITOR’S NOTE: EACH TUESDAY MY GREEN SIDE BRINGS SIMPLE TIPS FOR GREEN LIVING TO THE CHRISTOPHER GABRIEL PROGRAMWE ALSO HIGHLIGHT A FAVORITE GREEN SITE EACH WEEK. YOU CAN STREAM THE SEGMENT AT APPROXIMATELY 1220PM (CENTRAL) EVERY TUESDAY AT WDAY.COM OR, IF YOU’RE IN NORTH DAKOTA OR WESTERN MINNESOTA, LISTEN ON YOUR RADIO AT AM970 WDAY.

GREEN TIP: In the winter, when we’ve all made sure our homes are air tight, it’s important to ensure that our indoor air is healthy.

Everything that’s in our home makes up our indoor air quality. The materials we’ve used to build our house, the paint on our walls, our furniture; all the things that make our house a home can potentially be harmful to our health.

Indoor Air is 2 to 5 Times More Polluted Than Outdoor Air

Most of our exposure to environmental pollutants occurs by breathing the air indoors. These pollutants come from activities, products and materials we use every day. The air in our homes, schools and offices can be 2 to 5 times more polluted, and in some cases 100 times more polluted, than outdoor air.

People Spend 90 Percent of Their Time Indoors

Indoor air quality is a significant concern, because when the hours spent sleeping, working in offices or at school are added up, people on average spend the vast majority of their time indoors where they are repeatedly exposed to indoor air pollutants. In fact, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that the average person receives 72 percent of their chemical exposure at home, which means the very places most people consider safest paradoxically exposes them to the greatest amounts of potentially hazardous pollutants.

Some Factors That Impact Our Indoor Air Quality

  • Chemicals – All the products we use inside our home including air fresheners, cleaning products, perfumes and even our furnishings can emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and particles into the air. These chemical emissions can negatively impact our health.
  • Mold
  • Smoke, Dirt, Dust – Like other particulate matter, these can trigger allergies and other respiratory problems in many people.
  • Poor Ventilation

Source: Treehugger.com and Greenguard.org.

Some ways to keep your indoor air healthy:Beautiful plant

  • Maintain proper ventilation. When weather permits, open your doors and windows.
  • Keep known pollutants out of your home. Make sure the products you are buying do not contain contaminants.
  • Clean your home with green cleaning products.
  • Wash your bedding regularly.
  • Take your shoes or boots off when you enter a home to minimize dust and dirt tracked in from the outdoors. And place mats at all entrances of your home.
  • Garden and take care of your lawn without using pesticides or synthetic fertilizers. These toxic chemicals can be tracked into your home on shoes, clothes or paws.
  • Use common houseplants to improve your indoor air quality. For example:
    • Aloe Vera soothes burns and removes formaldehyde from the air.
    • Corn plants remove benzene and cigarette smoke from the air.
    • Spider plants absorb carbon monoxide.
    • Peace lilies remove acetone, trichloroethylene, benzene and formaldehyde.
    • Dwarf date palms negate harmful effects from xylene (found in paints).

Source: Natural Health Magazine, July/August 2010

For more information, visit http://www.indoorairquality.com/.

My Green Side’s web pick of the week:

GREENGUARD.org

This site contains information on Indoor Air Quality and tips on how to improve it in your home, schools and workplace. The GREENGUARD Product Guide serves as a free online tool for finding certified low-emitting products for offices, hospitals, schools, homes and more.

Some additional information I learned from their site about the impacts of air quality on children’s health:

  • Children breathe in a greater volume of air than adults relative to their body size.
  • Children’s organs and respiratory, immune and neurological systems are still developing.
  • Children are much closer to the ground, and as a result, breathe in more of the heavier airborne chemicals than do adults.
  • Infants and young children breathe through their mouths, more so than do adults, which increases their risk of pulmonary exposure to particulates and fibers, that would otherwise be filtered out in the nose.
  • Children have a higher heart rate than adults, which allows substances that are absorbed into the blood to permeate tissues faster.

Tags: , , , ,

EDITOR’S NOTE: EACH TUESDAY MY GREEN SIDE BRINGS SIMPLE TIPS FOR GREEN LIVING TO THE CHRISTOPHER GABRIEL PROGRAMWE ALSO HIGHLIGHT A FAVORITE GREEN SITE EACH WEEK. YOU CAN STREAM THE SEGMENT AT APPROXIMATELY 1220PM (CENTRAL) EVERY TUESDAY AT WDAY.COM OR, IF YOU’RE IN NORTH DAKOTA OR WESTERN MINNESOTA, LISTEN ON YOUR RADIO AT AM970 WDAY.

GREEN TIP: In the winter, when we’ve all made sure our homes are air tight, it’s important to ensure that our indoor air is healthy.

Everything that’s in our home makes up our indoor air quality. The materials we’ve used to build our house, the paint on our walls, our furniture; all the pieces that make our house a home can potentially be harmful to our health.

Pollution from power plants, cars, and other transportation is a well-known contributor to outdoor air pollution, but our indoor air quality is often worse; it can be up to 10 times worse for you than the air outside. Microbial pollutants like mold, pet dander and plant pollen can combine with chemicals like radon and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) to create a pretty toxic environment in your home; since we spend an average of 90% of our time indoors and 65% of our time inside our homes, according to the National Safety Council, that can add up to allergies, asthma and worse.

Source: Treehugger.com

Some ways to keep your indoor air healthy:

  • Maintain proper ventilation.
  • Keep known pollutants out of your home. Make sure the products you are buying do not contain contaminants.
  • Clean your home with green cleaning products.
  • Garden and take care of your lawn without using pesticides or synthetic fertilizers. These toxic chemicals can be tracked into your home on shoes, clothes or paws.
  • Use common houseplants to improve your indoor air quality.
    • Aloe Vera soothes burns and removes formaldehyde from the air.
    • Corn plants remove benzene and cigarette smoke from the air.
    • Spider plants absorb carbon monoxide.
    • Peace lilies remove acetone, trichloroethylene, benzene and formaldehyde.
    • Dwarf date palms negate harmful effects from xylene (found in paints).

Source: Natural Health Magazine, July/August 2010

For more information, visit http://www.indoorairquality.com/.

My Green Side’s web pick of the week:

Indoor Air Quality.com

Indoor Air Quality.com is a wonderful source for information on indoor air quality pollutants that are often found in indoor environments. They have an extensive list of common indoor air problem and information on how to improve the quality of indoor air.

Tags: , , , ,