Keeping your family safe from chemicals, and simplifying your life, is not as hard as you think. There are many ways to reduce your toxic load both in your body and in the world. here are just 3 ways we have chosen to do this in our home.

MICROWAVE
We have not had a microwave in our home for almost 10 years. Do we miss it? Not at all. I often get asked, “How do you cook? Warm up food? Make tea?” Well, it’s simple, we use our oven, or toaster oven, and our stovetop. We use an electric hot water kettle to make tea, and in the morning, pour our extra coffee into insulated mugs to keep it hot for later.  It’s actually very quick, and the food tastes soo much better heated up this way. There has been some talk about the dangers of using microwaves in the home. Here are a few articles you can read up on if you are interested. everydayhealth.com, fda.gov

Williams Sonoma

PAPER NAPKINS
We always try to cut down on waste in our home whenever we can and switching out our paper napkins for cloth ones has worked out well for us! I use cotton ones and have collected other types from HomeGoods or Target over the years. They are relatively inexpensive. I keep them in our cabinet near the dishes so it is easy to grab when setting the table.

PLASTIC FOOD STORAGE CONTAINERS
I am sure you have read some of the information out there about the concerns with cooking with and/or using plastic containers in your kitchen. If the recycling number on the bottom of your container is #3 or #7, it likely contains BPA (bisphenol A) or phthalates (used to make PVC plastics) which closely mimic estrogen in our bodies and can interfere with hormone levels, making us sick. These chemicals are especially harmful for babies, children and pregnant women, so, unless the container clearly states that it is BPA and PVC-free, the safest thing to do is to toss them. If you see a #2, #4 or #5 on the bottom of your container, then it it generally safe to store cool dry foods in these containers. Under no circumstance is it healthy or safe to heat or cook food in any plastic container. All plastics contain some harmful chemicals, that when heated, leech into the food. We removed all of the plastic from our kitchen several years ago and replaced those items with various sizes of glass storage bowls and containers with and without lids. If this is something that you are interested in doing in your home, you can make a gradual shift over to glass containers. There are many affordable, high quality options out there, butPyrex and Glasslock are certainly among the best options available. Stainless steel is another great option, and has the added benefit of not breaking when dropped like glass containers do.

ALSO, If you are interested in reducing the amount of garbage you’re throwing away, recycle your food waste and use it as an invaluable tool for the soil in your garden. It’s also a great way to teach your kids about recycling and how we can all do our part to care for the planet.

Read about composting HERE