House Calls

SPR 2018

House Calls Magazine is a quarterly publication that focuses on health and wellness. It includes a wide assortment of articles with topics on the latest health and wellness information, nutrition, safety, lifestyles, and more.

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Freshen Up body and mind 18 { spring 2018 } h o u s e c a l l s GREENER WAYS TO CLEAN A 2018 study from researchers at the University of Bergen in Norway found that regular exposure to cleaning products may significantly affect lung function. In fact, women studied who used cleaning products most often (those who worked as professional cleaners) experienced declines in lung health comparable to those caused by smoking. To reduce your exposure to the harsh toxins, opt for these gentle, all- natural cleaning agents instead. F ew things are more invigorating than throwing open the windows in the first few weeks of spring—letting the fresh air in and the stuffiness out. Indeed, during the darker, colder months, we tend to spend more time inside, accumulating dust in unventilated rooms, debris from our shoes and clothing, and clutter. So when spring rolls around, our living spaces are in need of a serious freshening. While the process can be daunting, studies have shown that deep cleaning and de-cluttering have a lasting positive impact on mental and physical health for the whole family. They can: Stop the sniffles. Dust is disastrous for people with allergies or asthma, and items like books and knickknacks are prime real estate for mites, explains the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology. Wiping down these objects come springtime—or clearing them out of the house—helps freshen the air and lessen symptoms for sufferers. Clear your mind. In the same way it's healthy to break up with negative people in our lives, it's beneficial to nix the dead weight in our habitats, whether that's an overflowing "catch-all" drawer or a stack of outdated magazines. "Having less clutter makes it easier to find things, complete tasks, and feel more relaxed," explains Roper St. Francis Healthcare exercise specialist Amy Levine. "A clean, organized house can also motivate you to get more productive in other areas of your life." Inspire healthier choices. Find yourself craving junk food? Your kitchen might be at fault. In 2016, Cornell researchers found that when people were surrounded by messy countertops and dirty dishes, they were more likely to choose an unhealthy snack than if they were in a clean kitchen. Keeping spaces tidy and bright may lead us to choose cleaner, more nutritious foods, they suggest. Procrastinating on your spring-cleaning? Don't! Here's how tackling the (often dreaded) chore can boost both body and mind – B Y H A I L E Y M I D D L E B R O O K Baking soda: Mildly abrasive and a natural deodorizer, baking soda is a great option for scrubbing out stains on nearly any surface (just sprinkle a bit in water and mix), and freshen smelly areas, like refrigerators or dog beds. White vinegar: Mix with equal parts water and use as a mold and stain remover throughout your bathroom and kitchen. Vinegar can also kill off salmonella and E. coli bacteria, making it a good choice for cleaning the microwave. Lemon: Because of their acidity, lemons are natural disinfectants and stain removers. For a natural furniture polish, mix one teaspoon of lemon juice with one pint of vegetable oil. 4 Elbow grease: Authors of the University of Bergen study say that, in most cases, you can thoroughly clean surfaces by simply rubbing them down with water and a cloth.

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