Avoiding Toxins in the Home with Healthy Home Dream Team’s Ron & Lisa Beres

July 31, 2013

JOHN SHEGERIAN: Welcome back to Green is Good, and we’re so honored today to have our good friends and back to Green is Good, Ron and Lisa Beres, the Healthy Home Dream Team. Welcome back to Green is Good, Ron and Lisa. RON AND LISA BERES: Thank you so much for having us today. JOHN SHEGERIAN: Hey, you guys came on the show when we were just getting started and your business was already booming and you guys were such an inspiration. We got so many great emails and contacts from people just saying man, we gotta have them back on more. They give so many great solutions and they’re such great energy and such great people, so I’m so thankful that now that we’re on Sirius XM that you came back on and you guys have just blown up this whole space. You’ve been on television all the time and I’ve seen you guys coast to coast on all the great shows but I’m so happy you’ve come back on our humble little show, Green is Good. Thank you both. LISA BERES: Thank you so much for having us. We love your show, love what you guys do and we’re really thrilled to be here. RON BERES: We love Green is Good, John. You guys have always been the biggest thing out there. I gotta tell you, you give an amazing show and thank you for having us. JOHN SHEGERIAN: Well, you’re too kind, but Ron and Lisa, talk a little bit since you’ve been on the show, talk a little bit about your journey first and what’s happened with what you’ve been doing and where you are today. LISA BERES: Okay, well I’ll give a little background for those who don’t remember us on the show a few years ago. How we got started in our business is really quite interesting. I was working as an interior designer and my job was to make homes look beautiful and that was pretty much the end of the story and I moved into a newly remodeled home. It was a little beach cottage and I thought I was a healthy person at that point but after moving in there, I started getting rapidly sick and it was to the point where I literally couldn’t get out of bed in the morning and I was having sinus issues and chronic fatigue and hormone imbalance and all kind of issues, went to about 11 kinds of doctors; endocrinologists, naturopaths, chiropractors, M.D.s, you name it. I tried every avenue and I just kept hitting a wall where everyone wanted to give me this supplement or this supplement and I know there’s people on the call listening today that are going through this right now and I was so frustrated. This went on for a year and I finally started researching and discovering that these VOCs and these chemicals that were in my home were linked to the symptoms that I was having and as I dug deeper and deeper, I started seeing all the connections to everything that I was going through and the home was newly remodeled. It had new paint, new carpet, new vinyl windows, new cabinetry, new fireplace, new everything, and so as we all know with new homes, there’s so many volatile organic compounds and chemicals that off-gas, aka that new home smell that we all think is so healthy is actually chemicals and so it was extremely toxic. I was working on the home and living in the home and it took me about a year of cleaning up my home and then I started becoming an evolving biologist that my house finally did a complete 180, and I basically had more energy when all was said and done than when I had started and I realized that people were living in toxic homes everywhere, all across the country, all across the world and they are medicating and not realizing that their environment is causing them to be ill and the range of health illness goes from sinus issues all the way to cancer, what these in our homes are causing, so Ron and I, we’re passionate. We’ve dedicated over a decade to this message and helping people eliminate toxins in their home and live healthy lives. JOHN SHEGERIAN: You know, Lisa, that’s, I’m sure, a very common story and for our listeners out there to see the great things that Ron and Lisa are doing, you’ve gotta go to their site. I’m on it right now. It’s RonandLisa.com. It’s simple but it’s one of the greatest sites out there because it gives you tons of solutions. Let’s talk about this, Lisa and Ron. Healthy home versus toxic homes, as you were framing earlier. What is the difference and how can we make our homes healthy and what is making them sick? LISA BERES: Okay, great question. A lot of people think that they’re living in a healthy home meaning they don’t see anything. There’s maybe no visible signs of mold and no one in the home is really ill so they think my home’s healthy, nothing’s going on, but what we’re really trying to get to is you need to create a nontoxic home. You need to be proactive today about your health. You need to make sure that you’re using nontoxic products. Every single product that you bring into your home is having an effect on the air that your breathe and your entire health and well-being so we really want to educate. In fact, there was a study done and they found that on average, homes have 500 chemicals in the home. People don’t realize that because we can’t see, smell, taste most of these chemicals but that doesn’t mean they’re not there and then boom, all of a sudden one day, someone is diagnosed with an illness, be it asthma, allergies, or even more severe, and so we really want people to be proactive. Make sure that you’re using nontoxic cleaning products, removing and eliminating flame retardant chemicals and we can get into all these issues that are going on in the home but basically, it’s about being proactive instead of waiting for the problem to arise. JOHN SHEGERIAN: Do you have any favorite products that our listeners should be getting rid of and also buying to start replacing the stuff that’s toxic to them right now? LISA BERES: Yeah, we do. We have so many solutions, as you mentioned, on RonandLisa.com. Ron’s gonna tell you the five most important things that we think are making you sick in your home and how to quickly eliminate them. We have a lot of how-to videos on our YouTube channel, which is HealthyHomeDreamTeam, and we teach you how to make your own cleaning products, which I love because a lot of people are on a tight budget and even though there’s so many great brands, you can make a lot of these things and you can make changes, let me tell you, without spending a fortune. That is a misconception. Yes, some things definitely do cost a little bit more but there’s so many things you can do without spending a lot of money. RON BERES: Thank you for that lead-in, Lisa. John, you asked a very open-ended question. You said what products can we recommend but what area of the home? That’s the whole deal. JOHN SHEGERIAN: Where should we start? What’s the most important room and where would you start today in my house? RON BERES: Well, your house is as green as Good Home. There’s several areas in the home but the most important area of the home probably is your bedroom, quite frankly, because we spend about a third of our time in there except for, John, Lisa and I, who spend about four hours a day but the key is indoor air quality. There’s a lot of different things that you can do to enhance the indoor air quality of your home because people don’t realize that we used to breathe a lot better but since we’ve gotten energy efficient and created tightly sealed homes, we’ve unfortunately compounded the problem of poor air quality by not letting our homes breather so a lot of time, we’re not opening our windows to give us that air exchange that it used to be once every hour like it used to be back in the 1970s. Now it’s about once every five hours but it’s about getting the right air purifiers for your home because asthma rates have doubled, even quadrupled since the 1980s, so we want to make sure that we’re adding the right elements to our home, changing the filter every season, every three months and making sure you get the right furnace filter. We talked to you last time a couple years ago about our book, Just Green It, simple swaps for the home that people can make. We name products. We name brands that we think are the greenest, healthiest products on earth for every aspect of the home and then we also name names of what people should probably skip. LISA BERES: Yeah. It’s similar to Eat This and Not That. People are familiar with that book. On one side, we tell you what to lose, and on the other side what to choose so green it and skip it and it’s really practical because if you are dealing with one room at a time, you could open up to cleaning products and we show you the brand names. These are the products you don’t want and here’s why. These are the chemicals and here’s what it does and on the other side, these are the products that we’ve tested and approved. These are the brands that we love. There’s so many great green brands now. You always have to be careful with greenwashing going on but they’re all really solid brands that we love. We love Earth Friendly. If people are familiar with them, they have a couple hundred different products for the home including pet and air. They have a natural Febreze. They have a natural window, furniture polish, flooring, carpet, you name it, and they’re a really great brand. They’re sold everywhere throughout the country. JOHN SHEGERIAN: And, for our listeners out there who just joined us, we’ve got Ron and Lisa Beres on with us. They’re the Healthy Home Dream Team. You’ve gotta check out all their great work at RonandLisa.com. It’s full of videos. It’s full of great information. I’m on it right now. They also have lots of solutions that you can get working on right away. This is not something that’s daunting. You can become part of the solution. Ron and Lisa will show you how. Ron, what else can we do in the house to get our houses more healthy? RON BERES: Well, that’s a great point. There’s really five major areas in the home that we really suggest people fix right away to kind of create their healthy lifestyle and I’ll just touch upon them really quickly. I eluded to this earlier; poor indoor air quality. There’s some quick fixes for that that I’m gonna share with you in a second. Really increasing the water quality of your home, avoiding formaldehyde exposure from common day things that are in the home, pesticide use or at least healthy pesticides. Make sure we’re switching those out and actually changing out our cleaning products or create our own healthy cleaning products but these are very deep areas, John, so you have to help me. Let me know what areas. LISA BERES: I’m gonna interject and tell you a little bit about formaldehyde actually because formaldehyde is, I believe, and Ron would vouch for this, the single most important indoor air pollutant that we’re facing with and that’s because it’s in so many building products. Formaldehyde, as you know, is in sub flooring. It can be in insulation. It can off gas from most importantly, MDF particleboard but that’s basically in your cabinetry and you cabinetry is usually the biggest source of pollution of formaldehyde, so not the wood door, but the particleboard. It looks like little wood chips and it’s glued together with a formaldehyde-based resin and so all those inexpensive particle board furniture that you get when you’re in college and shortly after, that you have in your living room too, that’s particle board and that is a really prevalent source of formaldehyde so when you’re in your home, you don’t smell formaldehyde like you did in your science projects so you probably don’t think you have it in your home but, in fact, we have really low levels on a consistent basis off-gassing into the air that we breathe and a secret place where formaldehyde likes to hide is in wrinkle free clothing and easy care no iron sheets and bedding so you can literally be dousing yourself in formaldehyde when you sleep at night if you’re sleeping on wrinkle free sheets and a lot of people are, not even realizing. They use that to treat the fabric to keep it from wrinkling basically so your house is the most important thing. You don not want to be messing around with that so make sure you’re getting certified organic cotton or bamboo or something similar for your bed. JOHN SHEGERIAN: So, we did air. What about the water, Ron? Because you’ve talked about that before on Green is Good and I know everyone has water. They gotta drink, they gotta shower, they gotta bathe. What about the water situation in our homes? Is there a way to get that healthier? RON BERES: There really is and I just thought of this right now because I know in regards to time and making sure to get perspective for your audience. I’m gonna answer that question but this is what I want listeners to write down. Write this down, listeners, because we have solutions for you to really live in a home where you can thrive and not just survive and it’s a free gift to your audience, John. Here it is. FreeGreenGift.com. We have eight bonus gifts that are on there that provide, ultimately, solutions for you to live a healthier life and you kind of triggered me when you asked about water but when I refer to water, we’re referring to drinking and bathing water and back to your initial question. Which one do you want to know about, John, or do you want to know about both? JOHN SHEGERIAN: Start wherever you think we should start. RON BERES: Okay. Basically, I’m gonna go into bathing water and I think we touched upon this a few years ago. Many people are really not cognizant of the fact that they’re getting exposure to what might be chlorine that’s used to treat their municipal water in their homes and this is a bad thing because chlorine may be a good disinfectant to get out some bacteria from the water but ultimately, when we ingest it or breathe it in, chlorine and its byproducts are linked to serious illness like bladder cancer, stomach cancer, and when we take a hot shower, it can be even a trigger for some people so as solutions, we talk about this many time. What can I do? I don’t have a water filtration system in my home or it’s too expensive. Well, there is a way. There are certain shower filters that you can get that literally have a price point of just $30 to $90 and they’re very effective at taking this chlorine that’s in the water, turning it into a large chloride and we’re not breathing it in and more importantly, we’re not getting it into the pores of our skin, which can be detrimental to our health. LISA BERES: It’s one of the most important things I think you can do and like Ron said, it’s so inexpensive. It’s one of the first things I did when I cleaned up my home. You hear a lot about the low flow, which obviously is great from an energy and conservation perspective but from a health perspective, you still need to be filtering that water because our skin is our largest organ so it’s absorbing whatever is going on, whether that’s personal care products, your bedding or your bathing water. JOHN SHEGERIAN: How about our drinking water? RON BERES: Well, I’m preaching to the choir with all of you here avoiding basically drinking bottled water, which for the most part can be tap water but let alone, there’s issues with the plastics so let’s make sure we’re using an appropriate water filtration system for our home and we go over this extensively on RonandLisa. We’ve done articles, videos, we share, but in essence, we want to make sure that there’s a point solution in the kitchen for our drinking water that is either reverse osmosis, which I know from a green perspective is not so good for water conservation but we are health first, John. We’re the Healthy Home Dream Team, so we focus on that first, but also, vapor-distilled water is another. A distiller for your sink is good, too. There are so many options and it’s kind of hard to get into — LISA BERES: Well, the reason we really like reverse osmosis is it filters fluoride, which as you know, huge chunk of the country has got fluoridated water. I want to say 85% of water supplies have fluoridated water and even the EPA is now saying wait, we’ve got too much fluoride in the water. We’ve got to lower that level because now we’re finding these illnesses that it’s linked to like dental fluorescence and other things so we really advise avoiding fluoride in your water from a health perspective. You just don’t need it anymore. You get fluoride through other ways. You don’t need to be fluoridating the water so reverse osmosis and vapor distilled are two tried and true methods that do remove fluoride. JOHN SHEGERIAN: Hey, Ron and Lisa, we’re down to about three minutes. I want you guys to take the last platform just for today because you’re gonna come on back soon but I want you to share some more solutions that our listeners out there can engage in and also then start using your website and your book, Just Green It, to get with it right now and make their houses healthy. LISA BERES: Okay, I’ll let them know real quick. I want to tell everyone, I mentioned cancer a few times because there are so many carcinogens, cancer causing chemicals, in our home but environmental factors account for 75 to 80% of cancer cases. That means we have so much control over our health, way more than we’ve been led to believe, and one of the biggest sources is cleaning products. I know I talked about it a lot but it’s just something that people don’t really change and they need to be and that includes your laundry detergent so I’ll give you some quick recipes. If you take vinegar, olive oil, toothpaste, baking soda and white distilled vinegar, which you probably have all of those in your kitchen cabinetry right now, you can make everything you need to clean your entire home. You can make a soft scrub out of baking soda and just mixing in a little bit of dish soap and you stir that until you get a nice paste. It’s kind of like a creamy frosting paste and we have videos where Ron and I go through and show you how to make all these. They’re so easy. You’ll spend $10 probably on all these products. That’s baking soda and to clean windows, you take vinegar and you add one to two cups of water and ass a few drops of your favorite essential oil to really cut that vinegar smell and make your home smell amazing and you can add just a drop of dish soap in there to cut the foam that may be left from your Windex or your glass cleaner and we could go on and on but those are some quick, easy, inexpensive cleaning products to get you started to make your home green, clean and healthy and like I said, we have a lot more. JOHN SHEGERIAN: That’s awesome, and Ron, you mentioned for our listeners out there, they can go to FreeGreenGift.com and get a special thing from a special little prize or a special little gifts from you and Lisa? RON BERES: It’s not just one gift. It’s eight gifts, John. JOHN SHEGERIAN: Eight gifts? Oh my gosh! You guys are blowing up my audience here! What’s going on? LISA BERES: There’s videos. There’s downloads. There’s a download to help you create a healthy office with ten tips to create a healthy office and a lot of little tools to kind of get you going. JOHN SHEGERIAN: We’re going to have you guys on back to Green is Good and I just want to tell our listeners again. Ron and Lisa are the real deal. Please go to their website, RonandLisa.com. Their book is amazing. You can buy their book. You can buy it both on Amazon and also on BarnesandNoble.com or wherever you buy great books around. Just Green It is a wonderful book. I have it. I’ve actually used it in my home. It’s a wonderful book. They give you great solutions and they are truly the real deal. Call them up. Email them and get Ron and Lisa to make your home healthy. You are my friends, Ron and Lisa Beres. LISA BERES: Aw, you’re our friend, too. Thank you so much, John. JOHN SHEGERIAN: And, you’re the Healthy Home Dream Team and sustainability superstars and truly living proof that green is good. RON BERES: Green is good.