Simple Ways To Make Your Home Eco-Friendly

Simple Ways To Make Your Home Eco-Friendly

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Thanks to more education and access to more resources, the globe is doing everything it can to reduce the environmental damages we cause. There are new initiatives to cut down on single-use plastics and to reduce carbon emissions. People are understanding that in order for the plan to work, everyone has to do their part.

If you are looking for ways that you or your household can contribute to the ongoing efforts to heal our planet, check out these simple ways to make your home more eco-friendly. We understand that not everyone can afford to have a solar installation company put in solar panels. These tips are perfect for any budget.

Use Cold Water When Washing Clothes

If you use cold water when you wash your clothes, you could be saving a ton on energy as 90 percent of the energy used by a washing machine is because of the process it takes to heat up the water. Using cold water is better for the planet and your clothes anyway. Overtime hot water can damage the fabrics used in your clothes. Your colors will become less vibrant and they will deteriorate with continued use.

Hang Dry Your Clothes

Letting your clothes air dry is another simple step you can take to make your home more eco-friendly. This is especially a good idea during the hot and sunny months or if you live in a place with warm weather for most of the year. Your clothes and bedding will also last longer if you line dry. Do not have a line to dry? No worries! Use a drying rack outside instead. If you do not have space in your backyard, or you do not have a backyard at all, put a drying rack on your balcony.

Use LED Lights For Traditional Lights

LED lights are more energy-efficient. You will use less electricity while also making your home more eco-friendly. LED light bulbs also last way longer than the traditional lightbulbs. There is no amount of convincing that should ever persuade you that traditional lights are the better option because they are not.

Recycle, Recycle, Recycle

This is the quickest way to implement eco-friendly habits into your household. Get a recycling bin and make sure you do the proper research on how to properly recycle. In addition to getting a recycling bin, you could also get a compost bin. This could help you get rid of the leftovers that you do not want to put into the kitchen sink while also providing free fertilizer to your plants.

Start Your Own Herb Garden

Planting your own herb garden will not only save your money, but it could also help improve the environment. You do not have to waste money picking up fresh herbs at the grocery stores. You also do not have to worry about recycling the plastic containers they are typically sold in. Starting your own herb garden is easy. You do not need a lot of space.

Gardening For A Greener Future

We all know that’s taking care of the environment is going to help us create a better future for not only ourselves but for future generations, making sure that we aren’t damaging our environment too much through our actions is all of our responsibilities, and taking care of it on a ground level by starting at home is always a good idea. There are many studies that show if everybody was to take some action, to help reduce their carbon footprint, energy use, or general use of resources then we would see a significant improvement in the environment as a whole. So here are some ideas that can help you grow a beautiful garden, without worrying too much about the impact on the environment at the same time.

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Photo by Emiel Molenaar on Unsplash

Water
Making sure that we aren’t water in our gardens with direct water lines, that can be detrimental to the way in which we consume water, and thinking of unique ways in which we can keep our plants well-fed, without using too much of the water filtering systems, Which overall costs not only money but time and effort as well as energy. There are many ways in which we can store water, from small water butts to 5000 liter water tank, and be able to manage your water usage effectively is essential. Many people have come up with unique ideas on how to keep a garden watered, and avoiding using sprinkler systems too much. Not only is collecting rainwater a great idea, which helps reduce the amount of water we are taking from reservoirs etc, but it can help the wildlife thrive at the same time if you are clever about it.

Homegrown
The carbon footprint of the food that we eat can sometimes be quite shocking, we don’t always turn to think about where our food comes from, or how much energy I have taken to get to that point, but we can start to grow our own food at home, and many people even go on to have whole allotments where they grow a lot of the fruit and veg themselves. Depending on the resources that you have, and the amount of time that you are able to commit to growing fruit and vegetables, will depend on your harvest, but it can be quite surprising in how much you can grow just in your back garden, and it can be educational for the children as well!

Recycle
Making your garden look wonderful doesn’t necessarily mean you have to spend a fortune either, you can always recycle barrels, and create flower beds with old decking that you may have lying around. Many people are turning to recycle all sorts of pieces of wood into garden furniture, more recently a popular idea is to turn pallets into seating, so there is plenty of opportunities to recycle items that you no longer need or use, and turn them into wonderful garden accessories or even furniture as well.

WAMA – Sustainable underwear

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The fashion industry is the second largest polluter in the world, which has an enormous impact on the environment. A huge impact is felt within the Earths water supply through water pollution, mass water consumption and microfibers entering our oceans. Waste accumulation is another factor, causing chemical waste to penetrate soil systems and air networks. The production of fast fashion has also enhanced greenhouse gas emissions and contributed to rainforest destruction.

As we become more aware of the fashion industries impact on the Earth, more and more companies are making the move towards sustainable alternatives. Sourcing materials locally, employing local people, using less water in the production line and limiting the supply chain. Overall reducing the impact on the Earth. The clothing is also made to be more durable and long lasting. Buying sustainable clothing is another step in the right direction in reducing our carbon footprint. Every step counts, big or small.

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WAMA Underwear

I am always on the lookout for sustainable clothing brands and was so happy to learn about WAMA underwear  a company whose missions is to

 pioneer the hemp underwear industry by making the best hemp undies in the world and constantly improving the fit, function and design.

leading the way to the future of sustainable hemp underwear for both men and women. Not only does WAMA use the worlds most sustainable fabric, they also work with small family run organic farms and ensure that each of their employees is provided with fair wages and good quality working conditions.

WAMA has been approved by PETA- People for the ethical treatment of animals and also by Green America – meeting high standards for social and environmental impacts. This is definitely a company that I can back and support.

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Benefits of Hemp

Hemp is the worlds most sustainable fabric.  Hemp is very gentle on the Earth, it requires little water for growth and relatively little land for it to cultivate.  Hemp plants don’t require the use of pesticides, herbicides or fungicides.  The process of the plant being transformed into a material can be done organically without the use of chemicals. Hemp material is extremely breathable and durable and is also anti-bacterial! Hemp can kill off any bacteria fungus or molds. Hemp underwear is a great addition to any sustainable wardrobe.

I have been extremely happy with my underwear from WAMA. The material is soft and breathable. To view the styles and colours from WAMA please click here 🙂

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4 Reasons Ecuador Should Be Next On Your Bucket List

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I think the hardest thing about traveling is figuring out where to go. We’re blessed with so many incredible travel destinations, yet some places often slip under the radar. For me, Ecuador is one of the most under-appreciated countries in South America – and the whole world. It’s such an exciting and beautiful place to visit, and everyone should add it to their bucket list. 

Not convinced? You will be after seeing these reasons to visit Ecuador:

The Galapagos Islands

Ecuador is home to one of the most incredible places on earth; the Galapagos Islands. Here, you will see some unique wildlife enjoying an untouched natural habitat. There are giant turtles, iguanas, seals, and even sharks. If you travel alone, it’s a joyous place to trek around as you take in all the beauty of your surroundings. For groups, there are Galapagos vacations for families that allow you to see all the amazing animals while being led around by a tour guide. You can’t really compare the Galapagos Islands to anything else because it’s utterly unique. It offers an experience like no other; it’s something you should see at least once before you die. 


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Banos

Banos is a little town that’s full of wondrous things for tourists to do. It’s not your typical travel destination; you get a real authentic taste of Ecuadorian culture here as it’s not overly commercialized. The beauty of this place is that it provides natural thrills for you to enjoy. There are mountains to climb, flowing waterfalls to jump from, white water rafting, long rope bridges, and even a swing that sends you out over the edge of a mountain. So, if you’re a bit of an adventure traveler that’s looking to get an adrenaline spike on your next holiday, then Banos is the perfect place for you. 

Excellent Food

The food in Ecuador is similar to most other areas of South America. As a result, it’s pretty damn delicious! You’ve got a host of sweet and savory treats to try, and plenty of small street food stalls or restaurants that serve the most authentic stuff. If you like fish, then try the ceviche in Ecuador as it’s really incredible. It’s also well worth trying cornbread as this is kind of a specialty in South America due to the diversity – you can have it with fillings for lunch, breakfast, or dinner. 

Incredible Weather

Finally, the weather in Ecuador is a good enough reason to pack your bags and head out there. The country is unique in that it sits on the equator. As such, you tend to get a pretty consistent climate all year round. It’s permanently hot and sunny, and you can take advantage of this by heading to some of the stunning beaches dotted around the coast. Speaking of which, you have hundreds of miles of coast to enjoy, and plenty of beautiful places to go swimming, sunbathe or have a little snorkel underwater. 

You see, Ecuador throw up lots of intriguing delights that make it a must-visit country. As a bonus, if you live in North America, then you’ll benefit from Ecuador using US dollars as its currency. So, there’s no need to worry about conversion rates when you set off!

Fight Back Against Water Pollution This Year

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We all care for the planet. It is more important than ever now that we take steps to keep our planet safe and ensure that all of the living creatures on it are able to live in a safe environment.

The oceans and waterways are some of the worst affected by our pollution in a number of ways and this is something which can have a knock on effect on the animals who live there. It is important for us to use oil water separators and be more conscious about the plastic we use each day because all of these things will have an effect on the planet as a whole. Today we are going to take a look at some of the things you can do every day to help fight water pollution and keep our oceans clean.

  1. Slow it down

When water flows fast through the land and into the ground below and also the rivers, it can pick up a lot of things on the way which we don’t want. This is why slowing down water flow can be helpful and there are a few ways we can do this. First of all we can have a water butt in the garden which will collect rainwater for us to use at a later stage. We can also plant water living plants in the garden so that they will take in a lot of the water before it moves elsewhere.

  1. Use vegetation

For those of you who live close to the waterside, the more things that stand in the way of your lawn and the water the better. One of the handy things you can do here is to plant some large shrubs and bushes to form a barrier and this will stop water from flowing through too quickly.

  1. Go biodegradable

The worst thing you can use for your home is cleaning products which contain a lot of harsh chemicals which can end up going down the drain and into the water supply. The best option for you is to find some biodegradable cleaning products which will not have a negative impact on your water supply.

  1. Limit pesticides

If you like to keep a clean and clear garden it stands to reason that you would also want to add pesticides to your garden to stop things such as slugs and snails. However these pesticides are bad for every creature in the garden and they can end up getting in the water supply pretty easily. Make sure that you think about limiting what you use, if at all, and this will make a big difference.

  1. Join a clean up

One of the things you can do to be proactive in cleaning our oceans is to take part in a clean up and make a real difference to the world. There are always clean ups in your area you can join and it will allow you to feel like you are really making a difference.

3 Eco-Friendly Alternatives To Products You Use Every Day

Trying to live a green lifestyle is so hard because so many of the things that we buy and use on a daily basis are made in an irresponsible way. A lot of the time, things that you wouldn’t even think about are causing damage to the environment. The good news is, increased demand for eco-friendly alternatives means that there are more green products on the market than ever, so you can move towards living sustainably if you make a few simple changes. These are some of the best eco-friendly alternatives to things that you buy regularly.

Meat And Fish Alternatives

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Veganism has really taken off in the last couple of years and that’s largely down to the environmental impact. Producing meat and dairy takes a big toll on the environment so a lot of people are choosing not to consume them at all so they can reduce their carbon footprint. Even if you don’t want to go completely vegan, you can still swap out some of the meat that you eat for meat free alternatives. There are so many great ones available now and they’re not as expensive as they used to be.

Fish is one that people don’t consider as much, but it’s doing a lot of damage. Things like sushi have become very popular in recent years which means that fish consumption has gone up, but it’s actually very bad for the environment. Overfishing means that some species of fish are in real danger of being wiped out, so it’s vital that we limit our intake. There are a few new fish alternatives in the shops right now so you should give them a try.

Clothes

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People don’t often think that much about their clothes when they’re trying to be more green, but you should. First off, you need to consider how they’re being made. A lot of cheap clothes are made using very unsustainable methods that produce a lot of greenhouse gasses. You also need to think about the materials themselves because if you’re wearing clothes that are made with nylon, for example, you’re adding to the plastics problem. The good news is, there are alternatives; Lyocell is a material made from wood cellulose and it’s great for making clothes. You can get some great clothes that are comfortable and look great, but they’re not damaging to the environment.

Food Storage

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When you’re storing food in the fridge or putting it in the microwave and you need to cover it with something, a lot of people reach straight for the clingfilm. But that’s so bad for the environment because you’re just putting huge amounts of plastic into landfill and it’s ending up in the oceans. The good news is, there are some great alternatives out there. The Beeswax Wrap company sell a reusable covering that is made from eco-friendly materials. They’re easy to clean and you won’t need to use cling film or foil at all anymore.

Even if you’re making an effort to live an eco-friendly lifestyle, you could be doing more if you make these simple swaps.

It’s Time For Your Home To Go Green

Do you ever just sit and think, ‘I need to do a little bit more for this planet!’? No? Well you should do. This planet is going to be the home of your grandchildren, and their grandchildren… until one day there will be no planet for them to live on. We have so much time on our hands to make a difference, yet we do believe because of how severe the damage is that we’ve done to this world, that people are now starting to believe that nothing can be done to help this world. But there can, and is so much to be done for this world, and a lot of it starts with the difference you can make inside your home. We really do waste a lot of energy, and do a lot of damage to this world without even realising, just by the simply daily tasks we do around the home. Not only that, but the way your home is structured might also be causing a few problems that you might never have thought about before. So, if you’re determined to do a little bit more for this world, and you know you want to go green, here’s how you can do it within your home!

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Parts Of Your Home To Change

If you have a new build home, then we’re sorry to say that this section might not apply to you as much. By new build, we’re classing that as any home that has been built within the last three years. Any older, and there are some changes that you can make. The first change is with your windows, and if you haven’t had them done for a while, now is definitely the time. Without even realising it, your windows are the worst conductor of heat, and all of that lovely warm air you’ve got in your home is slowly seeping out, making it harder for you to keep your home warm, therefore you’re using a lot more energy! You can get new windows throughout your home, and although it might cost you a dime or two, you should actually see your energy bills going down. Not only that,  but at the same time as doing your bit for your planet, you’re increasing the value of your home, and making it much nicer to look at!

Wasting/Saving Energy
This is where so many of you will be going wrong, because sometimes it’s just hard to know when you’re wasting energy. Well, if you’re someone who sits through the day with lights on around the home, you’re wasting energy. If you always leave windows open whilst the heating is on, you’re wasting energy. If you have the TV on through the night because it helps you sleep, you’re wasting energy. All of these issues have simple solutions. Shutting windows, setting a timer on the TV, and just being more conscious of what you#vegot on in your home, and whether you actually need it. There’s always ways to save energy, you just have to be more proactive when doing so!

Things You Can Implement To Help Save The Planet

Unfortunately, the planet has got to the point where it needs saving, this means that we all need to take steps to decrease certain things in our lives and get rid of habits we have too. This will help to reduce the strain on the planets Ozone layer and resources. There are a few things you can do that are simple and others that are drastic and take a bit of funding, however they’re worthwhile doing if they mean saving and restoring the planet.

Want to make changes and help save the planet? Below are some tips and ideas to get you started!

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Recycle

This is something that has been implemented in most places to help people go green but it isn’t compulsory everywhere. Recycling basically means separating certain materials into recyclables and landfill waste. This allows us to recycle the waste that can be recycled and reuseed, most of which is not biodegradable, which then stops us throwing non-biodegradable materials into landfill which ends up in our oceans and on land killing our animals, destroying vegetation, and polluting out oceans. The main things you can recycle is paper, cardboard, plastic, glass, and tins. Separating these things out and recycling them will help to reduce landfill usage and stop them potentially ending up in our oceans and killing our planet further. It might take a few minutes to do, but it’s worth taking the time.

Upgrade to elemental power

The use of gas and electric to power our homes and businesses is taking its toll on the planet. The resources used to power our homes and businesses are killing the planet and the sad thing is that we don’t really need to use them as much anymore, as we have managed to create ways to harness the elements and use them to create power such as wind farms and solar panels. However, many people are still using these damaging sources of power. Wind farms are an alternative option – they do what it say on the tin – that use wind power to turn the turbine and push power through a generator which will collect energy and put it into the power grid.

Wind farms are not ideal to have in your back garden, however solar panels are an excellent alternative. They use the UV from the sun to create power, and what is amazing is that even on cloudy days, some UV rays still come through and create power. The great thing about solar panels is that any energy that you don’t use, you can sell back to the grid – you can actually make money while also saving the planet and reducing the use of the resources. These can be fitted directly on to your roof. However, you should properly research the process further before going ahead with it, to make sure you get the most out of it. There are lots of sites that can help you to learn more about this, such as www.earthyb.com, for instance. The key is to know exactly what you are getting, before you make a purchase.

Making changes in life is never easy, especially when there can be a financial cost involved, which can deter you from choosing to make those changes in the first place. However, if doing so will give the planet a better chance of remaining ‘healthy’, then they’re worthwhile considering.

How Your Love Of Sushi Affects The Planet

Even though 32% of Americans have never tried sushi, the majority of the country has such as great love for the little rolls of happiness that they have made the Japanese-inspired specialty a staple of their weekly meal. If you love fish, it’s impossible not to melt of satisfaction the first time you try a nigiri – usually a prawn or raw fish on top of sushi rice – or a salmon maki. If you’re already salivating and checking on Google Maps where the closest sushi restaurant is, you need to reconsider your unhealthy obsession for sushi. Indeed, even though nutritionists agree that traditional sushi dishes that are made with quality ingredients are a healthy meal in your diet, eating sushi has proven increasingly unhealthy for the planet. In other words, it’s time to pack the chopsticks and the wasabi cream away; here’s how every day millions of Americans are putting the environment at risk:

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Why you need to eat less sushi

We’re far away from the small fishing communities of the past

The ocean’s (and river’s) supplies are becoming scarce, and specific fish populations are profoundly affected by a pescetarian diet. While wild-caught fish is the natural way fishing villages developed in the past – you can have a glimpse of the scale of real fishing villages when you visit coastal places such as Copenhagen, which was founded by fishing Vikings. In those communities, fishing was a natural and necessary approach. However, the consumption of fish has exploded to the point where you can find a variety of products in modern towns. Even someone who lives away from the sea can find a box of sushi in the shops. Needless to say, the constant demand for products that are not local to mass produce sushi boxes is affecting fish sustainability. If you need to indulge in a few rolls, make sure at least to grab a box that claims to use farming fish. Indeed, the farming salmon benefits are evident. Not only does the farming initiative protects the species but it also provides a valuable alternative for fish lovers.

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Vegetarian sushi, an alternative?

You can’t continue to buy your sushi box

The rise of sushi popularity comes from the fact that it is one of the healthiest takeaway food you can find around. As a result, busy Millennials can enjoy a quick meal without worrying about their health. However, your favorite sushi comes in plastic packaging. For many, that little box could end up floating in the oceans forever, which is a serious concern for the environment – unfortunately most takeaway plastic waste finds its way into our waterways. One sushi today, several seabirds killed as they swallow your box tomorrow. Or seals injured as the plastic cut into their flesh, if you prefer a different image. Ultimately, your sushi box is killing the wildlife.

Sushi purists are law-breakers too

Additionally, enthusiastic pescetarians among sushi lovers insist that you shouldn’t eat sushi that isn’t prepared with wild fish. The consequences of it, however, can be disastrous, as endangered species are targeted by fishers. Is wild fish sushi sustainable? The answer is no. Your favorite quick meal is killing the Pacific bluefin.

Is it time to bring your love affair with sushi to an end? Maybe the solution is to be mindful of what you eat, its origin and how it will continue to affect the environment. Ultimately, the question is: Is your maki roll worth killing for?

Ready to Go Green? Here are the Areas of Your Home to Tackle

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If you are ready for a lifestyle change, would like to reduce your environmental impact, or your carbon footprint, maybe do something for the environment, there are plenty of ways you can get started on a budget. There are various areas of your home where you might be wasting resources, polluting the environment, or using things that are hard to recycle. Below you will find a few tips on how to make small green changes make a difference long term for you and the future generations.

Insulation

We lose a lot of heat and cold air if our home is not well insulated. You will need to check your walls for cavities, cracks, and gaps, and make sure that the structural issues are addressed before you can tackle the rest of the house. Chances are that if you live in an older house, your insulation is not as efficient as it could be. You can invest in secondary insulation boards to save money on your heating and stop heating the street.

Loft

Loft

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If you are ready to start a green lifestyle, it is also important that you tackle the area where you lose the most heat; your loft. You can get a thick insulation layer installed for free, if you successfully apply for homeowner grants and get government funding. You can insulate the roof and the loft space, as well. This will make it cheaper and easier to keep the warmth in your home and make your house more sustainable.

Windows and Doors

In case you still have single pane windows, it might be time to modernize your home. While changing them will require a professional to install and fit the new units, the latest designs last for decades. It might even be worth to look into installment loans no credit check to finance your investment. After all, new and more efficient windows will increase the value of your home for many years to come, so your investment will pay off.

Heating

An inefficient HVAC system can burn a hole in your pocket and increase the carbon footprint of your home as well. Make sure that you deal with this issue first. You might get solar heating or a heat pump that will use much less energy than traditional furnaces. Depending on your climate and the size of your home, you can also power your heating with natural gas. Talk to an HVAC installation expert to get an overview of the different green heating options and the costs associated with them.

Natural Light

The more natural light you allow to enter your home the better you will feel and the less you will need to spend on electricity. You might also want to invest in solar powered lamps in the house, which can charge during the day and light up your room at night without having to use non-renewable energy. You can open up your space, get rid of the dark and depressing corridors, install roof lighting, or glass bricks over the door.

Waste Management

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One of the things we need to teach our kids today is the impact our plastic use has on the living environment. If you have a recycling service at your home or nearby, make sure that you collect and separate the different types of waste so everything can be recycled that is suitable for being reused. On the other hand, you might want to create a compost bin as well, so you can avoid using artificial and synthetic fertilizers in your garden and start growing your organic vegetables.

Renewable Energy

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Image via Wikimedia Commons

There are plenty of ways of installing devices that will create renewable energy for your home. You can get solar panels installed on your roof, provided that the structure of your home can support the weight. It is always better to talk to an expert to find out more about the different options. You might even set up a small wind turbine at the bottom of your garden, and generate some electricity that way. You will, however, need to make sure that you are not damaging the environment and endangering nesting birds in the area.

Energy Saving Features

If you want to keep an eye on the energy use of your home every day. This means that you have to avoid wasting it whenever you can. A smart thermostat will make sure that you always have the right temperature and are using your heating and air conditioning system in the most efficient way, and you are not heating an empty home. Some of your devices can even be controlled through a smart app, so if you have to do overtime at the office you can change the time when your heating is turned on.

Sustainable Materials

When renovating your home, it is important that you focus on long term. Avoid materials that are hard to recycle and are likely to end up in the landfill sites or toxic waste management systems. You might be better off buying a real goose feather blanket instead of one that is filled with synthetic materials that will be hard to reuse. Likewise, when choosing your furniture and your kitchen units, try to focus on natural materials, and upcycle instead of buying cheap.

Toxic Free Cleaning

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We flush down too many chemicals and toxins the drain, and these all end up in the sewage system. Unfortunately, water treatment plants are not able to get rid of all chemicals, and we will end up meeting them again, including medication flushed down the toilet. You can live a greener and healthier life if you switch to toxic and chemical free, natural cleaning products. Bicarbonate soda, lemon juice, and apple cider vinegar leave your bathroom, kitchen and just as shiny as the top brand cleaning products.

Starting with a green lifestyle should not mean that you have to make huge drastic changes. Focus on one area of your home at a time, and you will be motivated to go on and improve your life while reducing your carbon footprint.