Paleo Plan

5 Ways to Avoid Toxins (Besides Not Eating Them)

There’s more to being Paleo than just avoiding certain foods. Remember, what we’re trying to achieve by eating the way we do is a simple, healthier, less toxic life. But there aren’t just heinous chemicals in those non-Paleo foods we avoid: they’re everywhere. You inhale poisons in the air, soak them up through your skin, and even ingest them in the toothpaste and gum you suck on. If you’re truly going to be the most vibrant human you can be, avoid as much damage as you can in your environment. Here are some things to think about changing up for a more toxin free life.

1. Stop cleaning your house with caustic chemicals. Bleach and other cleaning agents are literally poisonous. If you wipe down your toilet, counter tops and furniture with poison, guess what – you and your kids and pets are going to come into contact with it every time you touch those things. Also, if you clean your bathtub or shower with toxic chemicals, you get to breathe them in every time you take a hot steamy shower or bath.

2. Stop cleaning yourself and your kids with toxic chemicals. Think about how many products you use on yourself every day: shampoo, conditioner, body wash, shaving cream, body lotion, deodorant, face wash, face cream, pain-relieving creams, lubricants, perfume, cologne, hairspray, hair gel, hand cream, bubble bath, dish soap, hand soap, hand sanitizer, skin toner, aftershave, and the list goes on. And on. Ever looked at the ingredients on those products? Do you recognize many of them?

3. Get a filter for your shower. A lot of tap water is treated with chlorine and fluorine(read: bleach), and some studies show that chlorine and fluorine can mess with your thyroid function by competing for receptor sites with thyroid hormone. When you take showers, you’re inhaling a whole lot of steam, and therefore quite a bit of chlorine. Plus, since your pores are opened by the warmth, the chlorine and other impurities in the water enter your system quite easily that way.

4. Stop putting heinous chemicals on your face and armpits. Deodorant and make-up (for women, at least) are things you probably use almost every single day. Not only does your deodorant probably have estrogenic perfumes in it (most, if not all, synthetic scents have estrogenic qualities), but it probably has aluminum in it, too, which has been linked with things like Alzheimers and other neurological issues. Plus, you’re putting it in your armpit, which is where a lot of lymph nodes are located. Lymph nodes are all about immune health, and if they’re clogged with impurities and carcinogenic chemicals, it’s probably going to affect your overall health. Make-up is usually no better, with entire books having been written on the toxic qualities of its ingredients. Here’s a book, called Not Just A Pretty Face, on just that subject.

5. Stop “freshening” your air with toxic chemicals. That means that freshener dangling from your rear view mirror in your car, the sprays or candles in your bathroom, and those plug-in fresheners in your living room. Stop scenting your house with unnatural-smelling perfumes that are only increasing your body’s toxic load.

So what are you supposed to do – smell bad all the time and never clean your house? No, there are alternatives for all of the products above that don’t contain harmful (or at least, as harmful) substances. Even though some of the poisonous chemicals are only present in small amounts in some of those products, when you use them every day, they add up. Big corporations almost never have your health at the top of their priority list, so don’t think that just because they’re a “reputable” company, everything they use is safe. It’s just not. Look at those ingredients and do some research.

You may have to pay a little more for the natural products, but it may be well worth it. If you don’t have a store near you that sells less abrasive, less toxic options, Amazon.com or other websites will be happy to fulfill your needs.

The less crap your liver, kidneys, endocrine system and immune system have to process, the more energy they have to thrive. Your body is naturally loaded with work to do every day just dealing with your basic bodily functions. The last thing you want is to overload your organs and cause chronic diseases to develop. Be good to yourself and simplify your life. Natural products may cost more, but as you know, these days good health is a hot, expensive, commodity. I’ll cover all of these topics in more depth soon.

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5 Comments

  1. As a good tip, you can make your own deodorant really easily. I’ve been using homemade deo since April and I found that it works better than store-bought, even in the summer!

    Mix 7 tablespoons of coconut oil with 1/4 cup of baking soda and 1/4 cup of cornstarch or arrowroot powder. Mix it up and use a little bit under each arm everyday. Since coconut oil melts, I left it in the fridge in the summer, but it was no big deal!

    I actually had to add a bit more coconut oil because it made my pits too dry and they started peeling. Now I have no problems!

    I know some people put this in empty deo containers, but I have it in a little jar in the cabinet.

  2. Great site and Great Blog. Thanks for putting useful information out there.

    Adam Grave, ND, LAc

  3. balor123

    I’ve been looking for a decent deodorant that’s not also an anti-perspirant for men but there are none, at least according to GoodGuide. Suggestions?

    • Tom’s of Maine makes just deodorant that’s not antiperspirant (no aluminum) ! Yu can usually find it at Tader Joe’s. For the masculine types, they have unScented, or lemon, which the wife seems to think is manly enough for me…it ain’t Old Spice, but not everyone can be “on a boat.” :)

    • @balor123 – Also, try the Waleda spray on deodorants. They have a sage scented one that I actually use that’s kind of non-gender specific.

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