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The Cardiologist's Wife - Tips for A Healthier Life in 2018
Jan 04, 2018

A new year inspires us to make positive changes in our lives so we can live a healthier, happier, more prosperous life. I can’t directly help you with prosperity but living a healthier life is generally better for your pocketbook. Here are a few easy to do chores that can help you live a healthier life in 2018.

Take care of your air filters.
Dirty air filters in your home mean that the air you breathe is full of dust and allergens. This can lead to a number of symptoms like headaches, fatigue, tightness in your chest, asthma, and other cold like symptoms that never clear up. Changing or washing an air filter takes minutes. Several factors determine how often you need to change or clean your air filter: the type of air filter you use, how many pets and people live in the home, the overall indoor air quality and the level of air pollution and even construction around your home. Further bonus: a clean air filter means your air conditioning works more efficiently, saving you money.

Clean out your refrigerator and food pantry.
The holidays are over but there may be some leftover party food hidden in the back and no one wants to start the new year with food poisoning. Schedule an afternoon, gather up some cleaning supplies and clean your refrigerator top to bottom. Pull everything out, checking the expiration date as you go, or tossing leftovers that are unsafe to eat. Put the rest of the food into coolers to keep cool as you work. Turn the fridge temperature up so that the motor isn’t working hard to keep things cool while the door is open. If you spot mold, wear gloves and even a protective mask so you don’t breathe in mold spores. Use a mixture of one part bleach to one part water to clean the shelves, drawers and walls. Dispose of any cleaning rags with mold on them in a ziploc bag so mold spores don’t escape into the house.

When all is clean, replace the food and set the temperature to 37 degrees which will keep food safe but not frozen. Always store raw meat in its original package but also consider placing that package in a glass dish in case it leaks.

Now tackle your pantry. Remove everything from the shelves and check expiration dates or that open packages are still edible. Check for signs of mice and roach droppings and take action if you spot anything. Wipe the shelves down and organize your pantry. Bonus: an organized pantry makes it easier to cook and to shop.

Install or check carbon monoxide detectors.
Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless gas. When you breathe carbon monoxide, it replaces the oxygen in your blood. Without oxygen, cells began to die and your organs can shut down, all of which can happen in minutes. Space heaters, gas water heaters, natural gas furnaces, fireplaces, automobile exhaust and tobacco smoke all produce carbon monoxide. You should have a carbon monoxide detector on each level of your home. They should be tested yearly and have the batteries checked regularly. Plants are also effective at removing airborne toxins from your home. Try peace lilies, bamboo palms, English ivy or a rubber plant.

Take advantage of the cold winter weekends to thoroughly clean the rest of your home using toxin free cleaning solutions. Get rid of clutter, old newspapers and magazines that are gathering dust and schedule any needed repairs. A clean house is a healthy house plus it looks good too!

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