There are a lot of things I don’t remember from my days of Traditional Chinese Medicine studies, way back in the 90’s. But one thing that was firmly entrenched is the teaching that the lungs are very delicate.

Add to that the sensitive skin that many of us have, increases in childhood asthma, and the desire to not pollute the environment, and you’ve got many good reasons for re-evaluating what you use for cleaning your home.

You can think you’re making the right choices but no matter how healthy looking a product may seem, with lots of white and green on the labels, the ingredients are where the truth lies. And “lies” are what we want to be aware of, including the idea that we “need” ten different cleansers to do their own special duties.

For several years now, I’ve been avoiding typical cleansers for the home after having allergic reactions to laundry detergent. I started using a pure castile liquid soap made of plant oils, that can be diluted and used in many ways such as laundry, hair washing, and dishwashing. One big bottle lasts months and I love how natural and toxin free it is.

The only spray cleanser I use is a 50/50 mixture of vinegar and water for all sorts of things like mirrors, windows, floors, counters and sinks. For grimy sinks and tubs, I first sprinkle baking soda and then squirt the vinegar and watch it sizzle! Then wiping with a cloth or scrubbing pad cleans up the grime just fine. And as you rinse away the residue, you can feel guilt free as it goes down the drain.

You can get a big jug of vinegar for about $4 that will last many months along with a big box of baking soda and you’re good to go. (For all sorts of healthy cleaning recipes, you can check out davidsuzuki.org and download “green cleaning recipes”.)

There’s something so satisfying returning to habits of days gone by that are more affordable, simple, effective, and healthy for your family, the environment, and your wallet.

Cleaning my home for less than $50 a year makes me breathe easy in many ways. Not to mention all the space that’s been freed up under the kitchen sink.

And my sensitive lungs are so very appreciative.

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