12 Easy Tips to Limit Chemical Exposure In Your Daily Routine During Pregnancy

12 Tips to Reduce Chemical Exposure From Your Daily Routine

Chemicals are all around us, so it’s virtually impossible to avoid them entirely. But it’s especially important to limit your exposure to chemicals during pregnancy since your precious little unborn baby is far more vulnerable than we are. Lucky for us, there are some pretty simple steps we can take that reduce the amount of chemicals we come into contact with each day.

After the jump, check out 12 Easy Tips to Limit Chemical Exposure In Your Daily Routine. And let me know what little things you do to keep the chems away!

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  • Be Careful of Old Shabby Chic Items That Might Contain Lead 1 of 12
    Be Careful of Old Shabby Chic Items That Might Contain Lead
    It's no secret that lead exposure is dangerous. And we're often warned about its presence in homes built before 1978, but rarely do we think about the lovely shabby-chic item we picked up at a yard sale or on the side of the road. Old chipped paint releases lead particles into the air that we inhale, so it's best to stay away from these items when expecting.
    Source: Oregon State University
    Photo via Flickr: Creative Commons
  • Use Chemical-free Beauty Products 2 of 12
    Use Chemical-free Beauty Products
    Most women use at least 10 personal-care items a day, which can contain 126 chemicals combined. Opt for chemical-free and all-natural soaps, lotions, shampoos, and cosmetics to reduce your exposure.
    Source: Health Child Healthy World
    Photo: 123RF Stock Photo
  • Stay Away From Bottled Water 3 of 12
    Stay Away From Bottled Water
    Bottled water is not necessarily better for you. In fact, some will argue it's more dangerous, as it can contain BPA, a chemical linked to all sorts of badness. Also avoid vinyl (shower curtains, plastic warps, and flooring), as well as cash-register receipts, to reduce your exposure to BPA.
    Source: Healthy Child Healthy World
    Photo: 123RF Stock Photo
  • Use Natural Bug Sprays 4 of 12
    Use Natural Bug Sprays
    While most sources say that, when used properly, insect repellent is safe for pregnant women, the fact that it contains numerous chemicals is reason enough to find a safer alternative. Why even risk it? Of course, if you live in an area that has a high rate of insect-related disease, like West Niles Virus, be sure to weigh the pros and cons of using bug spray versus not using it.
    Source: March of Dimes
    Photo: iStockphoto
  • Eat Organic 5 of 12
    Eat Organic
    I know, I know: Organic ain't cheap. But it's worth avoiding harmful pesticides during your pregnancy. You can also check out a shopper's guide to the Clean 15 and the Dirty Dozen, which rounds up which produce is lowest in pesticides and which you should absolutely buy organic.
    Source: Healthy Child Healthy World
    Photo: 123RF Stock Photo
  • Limit Your Animal Fat Intake 6 of 12
    Limit Your Animal Fat Intake
    Dangerous toxic chemicals accumulate in fat, and most commercially produced meats contain hormones and antibiotics, so it's best to limit your intake of animal fat. Opt for safer forms of protein, like organic, grass-fed, or hormone-free.
    Source: Healthy Child Healthy World
    Photo: 123RF Stock Photo
  • Clean Green 7 of 12
    Clean Green
    Use eco-friendly cleaners instead of those loaded with unsafe chemicals. Or better yet, make your own.
    Source: The Daily Green
    Photo: 123RF Stock Photo
  • Don’t Handle Light Bulbs 8 of 12
    Don't Handle Light Bulbs
    LED light bulbs, commonly known as the energy-efficient choice, contain arsenic and lead which is well contained until it breaks (or gets tossed in the landfill). And fluorescent ligh bulbs contain mercury. While there's no need to go back to the dark ages, you should be careful handling light bulbs, and have someone else clean up a broken one in your home when you're pregnant.
    Source: Connecticut Department of Health
    Photo via Flickr: Creative Commons
  • Get Enough Iodine 9 of 12
    Get Enough Iodine
    Iodine is a natural buffer against chemicals in your body, so be sure to get enough of this important mineral in your diet. I personally prefer cooking with sea salt because it has a better flavor, but it doesn't have as much iodine as iodized salt does. So what are other options? Sea vegetables, like kelp and seaweed, yogurt, and cranberries.
    Source: The Daily Green
    Photo via Flickr: Creative Commons
  • Wash Your Hands After Removing Dryer Lint 10 of 12
    Wash Your Hands After Removing Dryer Lint
    Certain flame retardants carry with them dangerous toxins, and they all seem to accumulate in your dryer lint. However, these dangerous chemicals are also found in couches, carpet padding, and even in some baby products.
    Source: Chicago Tribune
    Photo: iStockphoto
  • Avoid Canned Food 11 of 12
    Avoid Canned Food
    Always opt for fresh or frozen food choices, because canned food is rife with BPA, and we already know how bad BPA is! Not ready to give up the convenience of canned goods? Try these BPA-free ones.
    Source:New York Times
    Photo via Flickr: Creative Commons
  • Select Safer Fish 12 of 12
    Select Safer Fish
    Avoid fish with high levels of mercury in them and opt for safer choices, like shrimp, salmon, pollock, and catfish. Just note, though, that the topic of eating fish during pregnancy might drive you mad.
    Source: March of Dimes
    Photo: 123RF Stock Photo

Main Photo: 123RF Stock Photo

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