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Green Ways to Cope With Rheumatoid Arthritis

For those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, it is important to explore all possible remedies. Flares can occur without warning and sometimes, without a cause.  

There is growing evidence that environmental factors play a role in auto-immune diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis. While doctors and researchers have not pinpointed the exact cause of rheumatoid arthritis, they believe that genes and environmental triggers play a role. 

Avoiding environmental triggers such as viruses, bacteria, diet, toxins, radiation, metal, estrogen, and chronic infections may help to prevent autoimmune diseases from getting worse.

Going green when you have arthritis is one way to limit your exposure to triggers that can burden your immune system, cause flares and further joint damage.

Keep volatile organic compounds (VOCs) out of your home. VOCs are toxic chemicals found in many household and workplace products. Several studies have linked them to autoimmune diseases.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, these products may contain VOCs:

Paints, paint strippers and other solvents.
Wood preservatives.
Aerosol sprays.
Cleansers and disinfectants.
Moth repellents and air fresheners.
Stored fuels and automotive products.
Hobby supplies.
Dry-cleaned clothing.

Limit your exposure to these chemicals as much as possible. Make your own natural non-toxic household cleaners.  Instead of using aerosol sprays, open a window. Many commercial carpets also emit VOCs. Try bamboo flooring instead. 

Eat more organic foods. Non-organic produce and ingredients used to make commercially prepared foods have been exposed to harmful chemicals in fertilizers, herbicides and insecticides. Organic farmers use natural methods, such as companion planting and natural fertilizers and pesticides to protect their crops. They also do not give hormones or chemically contaminated feed to their animals.

Avoid heavy metals. Rheumatoid arthritis has been linked to heavy metal toxicity from metals such as cadmium, lead and mercury. 

Have lead paint removed from your home by a professional.
Read labels carefully. Lead and other heavy metals are common additives in cosmetics, including whitening toothpastes, lipsticks, foundation, mascaras, shampoos and conditioners.

Choose eco-friendly technology. The Green Electronics Council, with the support of the EPA, has created a green system for technology known as EPEAT, which stands for Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool. Electronics, including computers, that meet the EPEAT criteria have lower levels of cadmium, lead, and mercury, and emit less greenhouse gas, making them better for your health. 

Choose a greener occupation. Working in businesses such as hair and nail salons that do not use green products, or in automotive shops, increases your exposure to chemicals linked to a greater risk of developing RA, which can make your condition worse. If switching jobs isn’t an option, try to greening your workplace. 

Maid Brigade House Cleaning Services cares about the health of you and your family.  For more information on healthy green living and green cleaning, please log on to greencleancertified.com or maidbrigade.com.  For more information on “Household Cleaning Products and Breast Cancer”, please watch our video at greencleancertified.com/greentv.


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