Lox-tox is a mindset and lifestyle that involves being aware of the chemicals you and your baby are exposed to daily - and making conscious choices to minimize these. These chemicals can be found in the substances and materials around us - like bug spray or synthetic scents and fabrics as well as all the items you and your baby will use daily. Over time these toxins can impact your health and well-being. The good news is you can quickly reduce your exposure and that of your baby, providing positive benefits to your whole family.
Avoiding toxic chemicals is particularly important when protecting our little ones, as they are especially vulnerable. Unlike adults, their immune, neurological, endocrine, and entire bodily systems are still developing. Even small exposures during this critical window could lead to serious health problems later in life.
Scant regulation of chemicals, confusing labelling, and rampant greenwashing can make it challenging to know what items are healthy. Fortunately, there are great low-tox options out there; it’s just a matter of adding some knowledge.
Consider the items you use the most when caring for your little one. It's likely that the home environment, clothing, nappies and cleaning products rank pretty high on that list.
These disposable items with a higher toxic load can be replaced with simple lower-tox and reusable items. It’s a bit of a win-win because you will be doing something that is better for your health while also making a more responsible purchasing choice. Here are some simple examples:
- Cleaning products you use on surfaces that your baby touches can be replaced by an easy diluted vinegar solution that is super affordable or a Surface Cleaner made from all-natural ingredients.
- Wet Wipes and other moistened cleaning cloths are made from plastic mesh and often contain chemicals and preservatives and can be replaced with reusable alternatives. A good example of a switch-out is the Reusable Wet Wipes.
- Clothing is important as it’s on your baby’s skin all day. Prioritize items that are made from natural fibres (organic cotton where possible) as this allows your baby's skin to breathe. Always wash everything before it’s worn.
- Disposable nappies can be replaced with reusable alternatives, or by using zero-waste practices like Elimination Communication. This involves pottying your bub right from birth. This practice is used commonly in Eastern countries and is catching on in the Western world - learn more about this here.
- Even items like Changing Mats come in reusable variants that are free from toxins and are designed to be comfortable for your little one while being good for their health.
- Air quality is an important one; do you know what is in the car air freshener? How about scented candles?
Once you look at everything that surrounds us through the low-tox lens, you will likely see toxins everywhere. Anxiety over this can sometimes be as harmful or more harmful than the toxins themselves! My advice is this; choose what your boundaries are within your environment, make the changes you can, and create your home as your baseline - it’s where you will be spending most of your time. The changes will be incremental and just think of them all as a step towards a healthier life for you and your baby!