Many of the most egregious chemicals and pollutants we’re exposed to aren’t just our environment; they’re right inside our homes. From the plastics we use day in and day out to the chemicals sprayed on our clothes, our home habits have been affecting our health for years without our being the wiser.

In Micahel Tortorello’s article in The New York Times on purging household toxins, Tortorello writes, “According to published counts, more than 80,000 chemicals go into American industry, from the manufacturing process in a factory to the end product at the big-box store. These compounds may be innocuous (like water) or pernicious (like methylmercury). With so many substances in the marketplace, it’s hard to know.”

Government regulation is scarce on these everyday products and chemicals we are exposed in our lifetime and doesn’t look like it will be changing anytime soon. Unfortunately, this lack of regulation is showing up in the form of negative health impacts on our children. According to studies done by the Environmental Working Group, hundreds of toxic chemicals, including pesticides, fire retardants and PCBs, can be found in the umbilical cord blood of newborns.

The responsibility of reducing your exposure to environmental toxins in your home will be up to us as individuals.

Here are a few tips for kicking the mission into gear:

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