Save Your Lungs: Cleaning Swaps for Bleach and Ammonia and More

I love a clean kitchen and bathroom but not at the expense of my health. Our ideas of clean have gotten a bit skewed. Our obsession with cleanliness has caused us to use cleaning products that are harmful to our bodies and the environment. A survey, out of the University of Bergen, of over 6,000 people over a twenty-year span found a clear correlation between cleaning products and respiratory illness, particularly for women. The lung damage caused was comparable to smoking 20 cigarettes a day!

We Are Obsessed With Clean

Antibacterial soaps are everywhere. The soaps containing Triclosan are creating havoc by messing with the body’s hormone and thyroid systems and contributing to antibiotic resistance.

Ammonia can cause eye, sinus, and lung irritation at the least and more severely, seizures and brain damage.

Bleach can cause respiratory illness and increase the risk of asthma and allergies. What is more alarming is that combining bleach with ammonia or vinegar can cause deadly chlorine gas.

Pets Are Particularly Vulnerable

Keep in mind that pets are particularly vulnerable to the toxic effects of harsh chemicals. They have a more sensitive sense of smell and they often lick their paws that may have been in contact with the surfaces that have these chemicals on them.

Bleach Is Harmful To The Environment

Often dumped into bodies of water by manufacturers. Once in the water, bleach can combine with other chemicals and produce toxic dioxins – which are harmful to the environment. It can also last in the air and water for years, contributing to lower populations of fish and birds.

There Are Effective And Safer Alternatives


Bleach-Alternative for Laundry, Kitchen, and Bath

  • 3/4 cup hydrogen peroxide
  • 3/4 cup baking soda
  • 3/4 cup lemon juice
  • 15 drops lemon essential oil
  • 8 cups of water

Combine in large container and mix. Store in dark area. Use 1 cup per white laundry load or 1/4 cup per color load. For household uses, transfer to spray bottle and use on tested surfaces.

Shower Mold-Remover

  • 1/4 teaspoon clove essential oil
  • 3 cups water

Mix in a spray bottle. Spray directly on mold. Leave on for 20 minutes, then wipe off the surface or let it sit overnight.

Glass Cleaner

  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar
  • 10 drops lemon or eucalyptus essential oil

Combine in a spray bottle. Use with a microfiber cloth like these.

If you are not into being a chemist in your own kitchen and creating your own cleaning products, try these:

Mama Suds Toilet Bombs

Mrs. Meyers Tub and Tile Cleaner

Murchison-Hume Glass Polish

Biokleen Oxygen Bleach Plus

Eco-Me Wood Polish 

How ever you clean your house, make sure you are using products that are safe for you, your loved ones, and also our environment.

2 responses to “Save Your Lungs: Cleaning Swaps for Bleach and Ammonia and More

  1. In my earlier married life I used ammonia a lot for cleaning.

    Now I have been diagnosed with scar tissue in my lungs.

    I have to use portable oxygen now.

    Can ammonia be the cause of my scar tissue in my lungs?

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