Organic lifestyle is much more than just a buzzword, there is a reason behind it, and it is backed by science. As a single person responsible for no one but yourself, you have the luxury of eating whatever you want and using the products you consider to be OK (which is not necessarily a good thing), but as a mother, you must have your children’s best interests at heart. The era of mass production we are living in has made that job far more difficult, and in order to keep your kids healthy, you don’t have to go forward. Instead, you should stop and go back to the roots, to some simpler times, when toxins in food, clothes and other necessities were not an everyday thing.
Food – Where Parents Have a Say
Our children are constantly exposed to toxins they breathe in when they’re outside, in school, etc. and there isn’t much we can do about it. However, when it comes to their diet, we can “green” it up, and thus make them healthier and stronger. Commercially grown food contains a whole cocktail of toxins, many of them included in food production without previous diet testing. Organic produce is free of toxins, and it is packed with more nutrients (vitamins, minerals, enzymes and micronutrients) that are essential for children’s health. Although organic food is known for its higher price, that doesn’t mean that you can’t find a way to save money. Local farmer markets will have everything you need (from fruit and veggies to meat) at a decent price.
“Greening Up” Your Home
Maybe we can’t protect our kids from toxins when they’re outside, but we can do it inside our homes. A fact that we often overlook is that the air inside our homes isn’t nearly as healthy as it should be. To make it safer for our kids we should get rid of (or minimize) the common contaminants. Start with cigarette smoke, radon gas, carbon monoxide and volatile organic compounds found in paint colors. Regular ventilating and using air purifiers is very helpful.
Organic Wear – Worth It or Not?
It’s just clothes, so what’s the big deal? Well, synthetic fibers and non-organically grown cotton can have various toxins residues which don’t have an immediate effect on children’s health, but can pile up over time and lead to health issues. Some more direct results are rashes and allergies. Children are more sensitive to pesticides and insecticides than adults are, so it is an imperative to choose organic cotton, hemp and organic wool.
Recycle, Repurpose, Reuse Principle
Another huge part of the organic lifestyle is recycling and reusing the things that are not necessarily organically produced, but by doing so you can decrease your impact on the environment. There is an important lesson here to teach your kids – nothing goes to waste unless it has to, and when it does it should be thrown in a way that doesn’t hurt the environment. One of the ways to teach them that is by buying cheap kids clothing in consignment stores and giving away or selling the things that they have outgrown.
Cleaning and Hygiene
House cleaning and personal hygiene are common traps for using products packed with contaminants. The harmful chemicals found in house cleaning product can hurt both us and the environment. Avoid these effects by searching for certified organic cleaning products or by making your own home cleaning mixtures out of simple ingredients you can find in your kitchen, such as vinegar, baking soda, lemon, tea tree oil, etc. As for the personal hygiene, ditch the old regular cosmetic products you keep on your shelves, and opt for cosmetics made from natural ingredients. Luckily, there is an organic option for every product your children need, ranging from toothpaste to shampoo.
There is nothing strange or difficult in organic parenthood, it is just doing things as they are meant to be done. With the increased awareness of the environmental issues around the globe, it will only become easier.
Tracey Clayton is a full time mom of three girls. She feels she knows a thing or two about raising happy, healthy and confident kids, and offers helpful advice in her parenting articles on HighLifeStyle. Her motto is: “Live the life you love, love the life you live.” You can find her on Facebook and Twitter.