Health Hack: Oxygenating Plants Purify the Air in Your Home or Office


We all know that plants produce oxygen, but did you know that some oxygenating plants purify the air more than others? In fact, a NASA study found that some oxygenating plants are more effective at removing toxins from the air. The Clean Air Study was originally carried out to help improve the air quality in space stations. Luckily for us, this study can help us breath fresh, clean air while keeping our feet firmly on the ground.

What’s In Our Air?

You may be wondering what’s so dangerous in the air we breathe that we need plants to improve the air quality? Living in a big city can increase the number of toxins and pollutants in your air at home and at work. Mexico City has suffered from poor air quality for generations. This is due to intense pollution and a large industrial space. Meanwhile, there are over two millions cars, trucks and buses in the city of Buenos Aires alone. This contributes to the poor quality inhaled by citizens of the Argentinean capital every day.

How to Clean the Air?

By filling your home with beautiful oxygenating plants, you can be sure to combat a variety of toxins in the air. There are many toxins common in your home and office. These include trichloroethylene, which is commonly found in printing inks and even paint strippers! Even formaldehyde, the chemical associated with preserving dead bodies, is found in the air in low levels in your home and office space.

The US National Cancer Institute recognizes a link between formaldehyde and cancer. The US National Toxicology Program named formaldehyde as a known human carcinogen back in 2011.

The third chemical in our air is benzene. This toxin is emitted by car exhausts, tobacco smoke and even paint and furniture wax. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), benzene is linked to cancer and aplastic anemia. Xylene is another chemical present in cigarette smoke, plastic manufacturing, and vehicle exhausts.

The final airborne (and sometimes waterborne) chemical of note is ammonia. Ammonia in the air can both be dangerous and emit unpleasant smells into the atmosphere. You can minimize the presence of all of the chemicals we have mentioned in your home and office space. All you need to do is introduce certain plants into the space, according to NASA’s study.

What are the Best Oxygenating Plants?

When it comes to houseplants, not all are made equal. According to NASA, certain plants will help to combat different chemicals in the air. This means you’ve got an excuse to pick up a few of your favorite oxygenating plants and make your home feel fresh and beautiful. Whichever you use, you’ll want to care for them with a quality balcony compost.

Flamingo Lily

The next plant on our list is the perfect way to add a splash of color to your home. The Flaming Lily (Anthurium scherzerianum and Anthurium andraeanum) is known for its bright-colored waxy flowers. Common in the rainforest, these plants don’t like direct sunlight. As a result, they’re the ideal plant for an apartment or small home where there isn’t much natural light.

Filtering the air of formaldehyde, ammonia, and xylene, these stunning lilies aren’t just nice to look at. They’re also amazing oxygenating plants! Due to their heritage in the rainforest, they’re not hard to come by in Mexico and Latin America.

Cornstalk Dracaena

Also known as the corn plant, Cornstalk Dracaena (Dracaena Massangeana) is a great low-effort houseplant. This oxygenating plant is very tolerant of low light and doesn’t need much water. If you’ve had problems keeping houseplants alive in the past, the cornstalk is probably your best bet.

Formaldehyde, benzene, and xylene are all filtered by the cornstalk, making it a very efficient and low maintenance house guest. The striped leaves and long stalks are reminiscent of tiny palm trees on finer shores… what’s not to like?

Variegated Snake Plant

Don’t be put off by the name, the variegated snake plant (Sansevieria) is one awesome plant. This tall and spiky fellow is very easy to take care of and won’t die if you forget to water it once or twice. You can even grow a brand new snake plant from cuttings of another – how cool!

The snake plant will not only channel effortless boho-chic in your home, but it’ll also filter the air for an amazing FOUR chemicals! Trichloroethylene, ammonia, benzene, and xylene are all combated by this fantastic plant.

Peace Lily

Perfect for a minimalist household, the peace lily (spathiphyllum) is another miracle plant. Purifying the air for all five main chemicals, the peace lily is as useful as it is beautiful.

Peace lilies are low maintenance and will match virtually any interior decor. One thing to remember with a peace lily is to give it a good dusting every once in a while. Clean the leaves gently with a wet cloth. This will keep the peace lily happy. It’ll be sure to keep the air in your home or office fresh all year round.

Florist’s Chrysanthemum

The incredible oxygenating plant on our list also filters all five of the main air chemicals. Florist’s Chrysanthemum (chrysanthemum morifolium) is a stunning floral plant that is as useful as it is beautiful. The name chrysanthemum derives from the Greek word chryos meaning gold, describing the flower’s vibrant color. This oxygenating plant is available in a huge variety of colors from pink and purple, to red and golden yellow. It’s bound to match your home decor.

The Florist’s Chrysanthemum is the ideal houseplant as it won’t survive in colder climates. This plant needs some natural light and plenty of water, so don’t forget about her and she’ll do her job just right!

Air Fern

If the Florist’s Chrysanthemum seems a little high maintenance for you, why not pick up an air fern (sertularia argentea)? Another great oxygenating plant, the air fern needs very little care or daylight. The Boston Fern is a variation of the air fern that is easy to come by and purifies the air for formaldehyde and xylene.

Fill your home or office with gorgeous oxygenating plants. By doing this, you won’t need an office air filter to keep the nasties at bay. Sit back and relax knowing the plants are doing their work while looking beautiful at the same time.

Want more sustainability tips? Check out these ideas to save earth save life and get gut health today.

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