Home wellness is the active pursuit of creating and maintaining a healthy, balanced home. Keep reading for more on what that means.
A lot of you likely think your home is a pretty healthy place. I wouldn’t blame you—I do too. It’s clean, right? Well, maybe not.
First, we have to define what a healthy home is. Your body, just like you home, needs to be taken care of. Just like a healthy body takes some personal wellness, a healthy home requires its own wellness too—home wellness. At Second Nature, we define home wellness as the active pursuit of creating and maintaining a healthy, balanced home.
We did a research study here and found that, not too much to our surprise, 99% of Americans think that a healthy home is important. Not too much to our surprise, about every 3 in 5 of Americans also think that their home isn’t as healthy as they’d like. I can understand that. We always hear or read about something more we can be doing.
We also learned that there’s a strong consensus that good indoor air quality and clean water are some of the most important factors that contribute to home wellness. Given that, let’s start with air quality. Even though 61% of Americans think that outdoor pollution is worse than the air inside your home, the air inside your home could be up to 5x more polluted than the air outside. Yes, really, indoor air can be as much as five times more polluted than what’s outside. If that surprised you, I think we can all agree that maybe the “healthy home” we pride ourselves on isn’t quite as healthy as we think.
Ready some more shocking data? Good.
Wearing shoes inside at home. A lot of us do it (50% of Americans in fact). We think “it isn’t a big deal.” Maybe you take your shoes off inside and so does everyone else who comes to your house. Or maybe you take them off but feel rude asking guests to do the same. Wherever you fall on the barefoot-indoors spectrum, we usually think taking shoes off inside is just so your floors remain cleaner a little longer. Yes, that’s true. That was what 77% of you think. 47% think it’s more comfortable.
Since your feet collectively house about 25% of the bones in your body, along with 33 joints and hundreds of muscles, tendons, and ligaments, it’s important to take care of them! Walking barefoot can actually be healthy, but for most of us, we grew up wearing shoes and now rely on them. So give it a shot, just don’t overdo it.
At the same time, 36% of Americans remove their shoes indoors because they know about the air toxins they bring inside with their shoes. Things like pesticides, e. Coli, C. diff, and even feces latch onto your shoes and gladly come inside your home. That’s just gross. Do your home a favor and take off your shoes. And those guests you don’t want to be rude to? Just politely ask them to take their shoes off. It’s your house!
Before we move on to water quality, we do have to talk about air filters a little bit. Not because we sell them, although we do and you should definitely have Second Nature air filters in your home. We’re going to talk about them because regularly replacing your air filters is part of home wellness. Since 33% of Americans forget this out-of-out-of-mind home maintenance task, it’s not surprising that 63% want an easier way to remember changing out their air filters them on time. (But not you. You use Second Nature for that)
When it comes to keeping yourself healthy, changing your air filters on time can help reduce negative health impacts from air toxins and can even help with allergies (and can make a big difference for those who suffer from asthma, COPD, or other respiratory conditions). Want to take care of your lungs? Take care of your home!
When it comes to keeping your home healthy, regularly replacing your air filters helps prevent damage to your HVAC that could otherwise happen. It also reduces your energy bill and, consequently, your carbon footprint. In fact, you can reduce the energy consumption of your HVAC system by as much as 15% by replacing your air filters.
One last thing, Americans spend an average of $159 per month on self-care activities. For those between 24 and 39 years old, that monthly average goes up to $265. That’s taking care of yourself, and that’s very important. Do you know where I’m going with this? Guess how much it costs on average to have clean air filters in your home. $10 per month. Hmmm, that seems pretty reasonable for healthy air, doesn’t it?
Now, on to clean water. 64% of Americans are concerned about the quality of their drinking water. So much so that 51% regularly drink bottled water at home. Bottled water isn’t too expensive, but do you know how much plastic that is? Too much! In 2017, Americans drank 13.7 billion gallons of bottled water.
Don’t get me wrong, I get it. Bottled water is easy and convenient, it’s cheap, and it’s not straight tap water. However, the cost also adds up and so does the environmental impact, and filtered tap water can be of the same or better quality without all the empty bottles.
72% of Americans say filtered tap water tastes as good as bottled water, but 51% still say they drink bottled water at home. Here’s a tip: Whether you get water from the fridge or the tap, filter it yourself.
There are a lot of different options to filter your water, from pitchers with filters to refrigerator water filters to filters that go right on the tap, and none are bad choices. Just make sure the filter will get the job done. The National Sanitation Foundation classifies water filters under certain standards.
- NSF 42 - "Filters are certified to reduce aesthetic impurities such as chlorine and taste/odor. These can be point-of-use (under the sink, water pitcher, etc.) or point-of-entry (whole house) treatment systems.”
- NSF 53 - "Filters are certified to reduce a contaminant with a health effect. Health effects are set in this standard as regulated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Health Canada. Both standards 42 and 53 cover adsorption/filtration which is a process that occurs when liquid, gas or dissolved/suspended matter adheres to the surface of, or in the pores of, an adsorbent media. Carbon filters are an example of this type of product.”
A filter that meets both those standards is going to be the ideal filter for your water. Clean drinking water is one of the most important elements of a healthy home, so a good water filter is not something to skip on.
Home wellness is all about creating a healthy, balanced home. This includes keeping the air you breathe and the water you drink clean and free of threats to your health. At Second Nature, we strive to help you achieve home wellness with our air filter subscription service. We make keeping your air clean easy by shipping you high-quality and reliable air filters on your schedule so that you do not forget to change them and they keep filtering pollutants out of your air.