Tuesday, 9 October 2012

The Next Big Thing in “Cleansing” ... Your House; House Plants

Image: Sick Building Syndrome

So you’ve probably heard a friend or colleague talk about doing a “cleanse” or going on a “cleansing diet” or possibly just adding certain superfoods (like chia, aloe vera, or certain fruits and fruit juices) to their regular diet for their “cleansing effect.”

Well, it turns out the next big thing in health and wellness may be to cleanse our home environment. And no, we’re not talking about squeaky-clean windows and floors. In fact, harsh chemical leaners and other toxins are what our buildings need to be cleansed from.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the levels of air pollutants inside homes can greatly exceed the levels outside. Household cleaning products, central heating and air-conditioning, off-gassing and other sources are the main sources of a handful of noxious chemicals.

From benzene and trichloroethylene to formaldehyde, our homes are rife with chemicals that accumulate in the indoor atmosphere over time thanks to off-gassing, particularly due to prolonged exposure to heat and/or changes in temperature.

Image: Common Sources of Airborne Formaldehyde in the Home.
Source: Yoshino Gypsum Co.,Ltd: Products / Solutions for Sick Building Syndrome

Luckily, certain plants can gradually scrub your home of airborne chemicals.  NASA research has indicated some of the most effective plants for cleaning dangerous compounds from the air include devil's ivy, peace lilies, Pleomele, gerbera daisies and Sansevieria trifasciata, commonly called snake plant. Two other plants, the ficus and Japanese aralia, were also shown to be effective. 

This is all well and good, but what about the plants?  Who or what scrubs the plants?  We contend the only way plants can continuously perform the service of cleaning the air is to ensure those plants are themselves in a vibrant, living ecosystem, like Peapod Life.

We have discussed sick-building syndrome before, and in our efforts to improve living conditions through advancements in building systems, such as Peapod Life Building EcoSystems and Technology, we will continue to educate the public with regards to the benefits of living with plants.

Attila Lendvai
VP of Strategic Development
Wo-Built Inc. - Innovative Design and Build

link: Buildings need Doctors, too!
Oh yes, buildings can be sick. The term Sick Building Syndrome has been around for years and refers generally to air quality issues caused by inadequate heating and ventilation systems, outgassing of materials and organic compounds such as mold in the air. Mostly used for the work place, Sick Building Syndrome is also applicable for residential buildings.

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