Poor indoor air quality and toxins can have a drastic impact on our health, potentially leading to asthma, allergies, inflammation, anxiety and poor sleep. There are natural and easy ways to bring the benefits of the outdoors inside. Many studies have been done by NASA showing the benefits of house plants and the impact they have on our overall health but some of us, myself included, don’t have the best green thumb. Luckily there are some super easy to care for plants that don’t take a lot of gardening experience that we should all have in our homes. Here are a few of my favorites that I love to keep in my bedroom!
English ivy is a species of flowering plant native to Europe and Western Asia. This plant has been proven to reduce airborne mold by 94% in 12 hours, which can have a significant benefit for those who suffer from allergies or lung irritation. It is one of NASA’s top plants for purifying the air and is simple to grow and only needs moderate exposure to sunlight. Plus it’s beautiful and looks great in an indoor hanging basket, or placed on a ledge where the leaves can trail down. It’s leaves are toxic to kids and pets if ingested though, so make sure to keep it out of reach!
Aloe vera is a succulent plant species that has been commonly used in herbal medicine since the beginning of the first century AD. Listed as one of NASA’s top air-improving plants, Aloe emits oxygen at night, making for a more restful slumber. It’s also one of the easiest plants to grow and maintain – it tolerates ‘neglect’ well and so doesn’t require frequent watering. Dubbed the ‘plant of immortality’ by the Egyptians, it reproduces easily so if you buy one you’ll soon have an Aloe plant for all the rooms in your house. Keep it on your bedroom window as it does need a lot of direct sunlight. You can also use the gel from the Aloe Vera leaves as a topical treatment for minor cuts and burns, insect bites, dry skin and lots more! It’s simply a must-have plant in every home.
Peace lily is not just pleasing to the eye, but it is another of NASA’s superstar plants, helping to filter out harmful benzene, trichloroethylene, and formaldehyde toxins. The moisture given off by these striking flowers can boost a room’s humidity by up to 5%. This suppresses airborne microbes which can lead to allergies, and also helps relieve those irritating dry noses and throats that keep you awake all night. A nice shady position (out of the reach of pets and children) and weekly watering is all the Peace Lily needs – that’s not too much to ask in return for a great night’s sleep.
Golden pothos has marbled, heart-shaped leaves and is another exceptional air purifying plant according to NASA. Those with a busy schedule will particularly welcome this ivy-like vine. Not only will you have a better quality of sleep but you need not worry too much about nurturing it – a couple of hours of morning sun and a little water once a week is all it requires. It makes a great hanging plant too – which curbs its invasive nature and keeps its mildly toxic leaves out of the reach of pets and children.
There’s lots more plants that you can have in your home such as jasmine, lavender, rosemary, etc, just pick your favorites and enjoy the benefits!