I love filling my house with a variety of indoor plants – not only do they look great, but they also bring with them a raft of other benefits. Our houses are becoming increasingly toxic with electromagnetic pollution from laptops, mobile phones, televisions and microwaves, not to mention chemical-laden cleaning products, paints, glues, detergents, scents, carpets and so on. These invisible toxins pollute the indoor air we breathe and contribute to many unnecessary ailments by challenging our respiratory and detoxification systems. It is sad to learn that indoor pollution has been ranked as one of the world’s greatest public health risks. This is not great news for us, but even more at risk are our children whose sensitive systems are already battling far more man-made pollutants than we ever did.
Intuitively we seek nature to restore our senses and recharge our batteries so it really is a no-brainer – the best and most natural way to cleanse our inside air and boost our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health: fill the house and workspace with plants. If you’re not already bringing the outdoors in, then now really is the time!
Mother nature kicks butt yet again!
All plants produce oxygen – the most essential chemical without which we cannot live – and absorb harmful carbon dioxide from the air, but there are specific species that offer all manner of different healing and balancing properties such as:
- eliminating significant amounts of benzene, formaldehyde and trichloroethylene – the top three volatile organic compounds (VOCs)
- filtering contaminants such as cigarette smoke, allergens and electromagnetic pollution (particularly cactus)
- offering powerful medicinal benefits
- dehumidifying and softening the air
- decreasing dust
- keeping air temperatures down
- reduce airborne mould and bacteria
…which in turn help us:
- fight colds
- reduce headaches (particularly gerbera daisies and lilies)
- relieve pain
- clear congestion (particularly eucalyptus)
- fight viral infections and eye and fungal diseases (by balancing humidity levels)
- reduce stress and anxiety levels and systolic blood pressure
- reduce drowsiness and sharpen our minds and reaction times
- speed up hospital patients recovery time from illness and surgery
- create a sense of calm and well-being
- improve sleep (particularly gerbera daisies) – you are 10,000 times more sensitive to chemical and electrical pollution when you are sleeping so absolutely keep a plants near your bed!
- help heal dry, cut or burnt skin (particularly aloe vera)
- help prevent and build tolerances to allergies when exposed to young children
My Top Nine Household Plants!
1) Boston Fern
- Said to be the best air humidifier and air purifier, especially great at clearing formaldehyde from the air
2) Spider Plant
- Purifies the air rapidly
- Clears benzene, formaldehyde, carbon monoxide and xylene from the air (solvents used in leather, rubber and printing industries)
3) Christmas Cactus
- Great for cleaning the air of electromagnetic pollution
- Place them in your lounge or work space where you have computers, heavy lighting, TVs, telephones and so on.
4) Snake Plant
- Filters out formaldehyde and absorbs nitrogen oxides
- Very resilient (tolerate low light and needs few waterings)
- Clears formaldehyde and benzene from the air – found in chemical cleaning products, toilet paper, tissues, personal care products and paints so keep this plant in your bathroom or bedroom
- When applied topically it is wonderful at healing and soothing burns, cuts, psoriasis, bug bites and dry skin.
- Filters benzene (found in glue, paint, plastics, detergents) and ammonia (found in solvents and cleaners)
7) Bamboo Palm
- Filters the top three VOCs and great air humidifier
- A good choice for placing around furniture that could leaching out formaldehyde
8) Peace Lilly
- Excellent at removing the main three VOCs
- Removes mould spores from the air so great for bathrooms, kitchens and laundry rooms
9) Gerbera Daisy
- Great at removing benzene
- Absorbs carbon dioxide and gives off oxygen overnight, which makes for a much better sleep so keep this near your bed!
The scientific proof is all there, even NASA’s BioHome is filled with common houseplants to purify the air and “absorb chemical pollutants resulting from synthetic materials in the living area”! So take yourself off to your local plant nursery and help yourself and all the people around you live happier, longer, more creative and stimulating lives with the beautiful sights and pleasant aromas that house plants bring.