Time Indoors – Is it Affecting Your Health?

Spending more time indoors, you may discover that your place is not supporting your health.

Did you know that on average Australians generally spending 90+% of their time indoors?

This can include home, work, in vehicles and places of worship.

Whether it be a change in employment, circumstances or, due to the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, all of a sudden, you might find yourself at home a lot more than previously.

Like André.

His contract finished, and instead of being on the road all the time for work, he was at home until he arranged new employment.

All of a sudden, his voice got raspy, he felt sick, but not sick enough to spend the day in bed, his energy was low. He didn’t feel great, so found that he spent even more time indoors.

Quickly, he realised that something was wrong.

He got in touch with me, and we uncovered some hidden hazards, otherwise known as environmental stressors.

Once these were addressed properly, he was 100% a-okay in his home.

He was sweet, he called me every week to say, “I’m still okay!”

That is exactly why I do what I do!

Being able to help someone take back the reins of their life, to return to full health and be able to do whatever they choose… that is what is all about.

All too often, when something goes wrong health-wise, people immediately think there is something wrong with them.

Yet, like in André’s case, sometimes the problem is within the environment, not the person.

You fix the environmental stressors, and the person returns to normal.

In so many instances, when you clean up the environment the problem goes away.

I believe that more people are affected by the environment than they realise.

A good example of this is a headache. What do you do when you get a headache?

Do you…

  • Reach for the painkillers like many people do?
  • Drink extra water and have some downtime?
  • Explore your environment for changes?

My #1 go-to is always to explore any changes in the environment.

I would rather fix the environment (cause) than take medication to temporarily ease the symptoms and never get to the bottom of it.

We’re all different, I get it. No judgement here. ☺

Have you noticed any changes since spending more time indoors ?

Here’s a list to get you thinking – but do note, there are medical causes for some of these too – so do check in with your doctor or health practitioner for certainty.

  • Headaches
  • Poor sleep
  • Aching eyes
  • Muscle tension
  • Feeling off (malaise)
  • Ringing in your ears (tinnitus)
  • Grinding your teeth (bruxism)
  • Runny nose
  • Cough
  • Low energy
  • Foggy head
  • Poor concentration

These can all have environmental causes.

So, you might want to check things out.

eco health solutions nature

The best way to determine if your place is playing a role is…

Notice how you feel when you are out of the building? 


If you are in lockdown, you can’t stay somewhere else, but if you aren’t in lockdown, see how you feel when you are away from your place for a few days.


Go for a walk, ideally in nature (the beach, a park, a reserve). Ideally spend a few hours enjoying the sunshine, fresh air and natural world.

If you notice your symptoms ease off when you are away, it begins to point to an issue in your place.

If you find that they ease off and then when you return, the symptoms do too, then it confirms that there is an environmental stressor there that is affecting you.

Simple Steps to Ease the Symptoms when you are Spending Time Indoors

Here are some simple steps that you can use to ease the symptoms. Do be aware that these are temporary measures and until the cause is addressed, the issue remains.

1. Ventilate. 
If there is a build-up of indoor air contaminants, open your doors and windows to exchange the air and dilute the levels of contaminants.

2. Spend time in nature. 
Shinrin Yoku is the Japanese practise of “forest bathing” and it is seen to be highly beneficial for health (including mental health).

60 minutes of time in nature, especially under a canopy of trees can result in 7 days of benefits. Make some time, at least, every week to get out in nature.

3. Turn off your devices, wi-fi and smartphones – at least while you sleep. 
Sleep is the most important time of the day it is when our body heals. So, give it the best chance to do this, and turn everything off.

I call this “digital downtime” and you can do it more often than just overnight. 😉


Environmental Stressors Can Cause Blindness??

Environmental Stressors Can Cause Blindness??

Say what? Environmental stressors can cause blindness????


Let me illustrate this with a story about Billie.

Billie (not her real name) is a young Mum who is super keen to ensure her bubba is safe. She’d heard about 5G and noticed some of the attention it was getting. So she asked Dr Google, she joined FB groups, she sought out information from everywhere.

Out came Protective Mamma Bear.

5G became an obsession. It consumed every available moment between changing nappies, feeding, washing, playing with bubba and sleep…. Well, to be honest, it even started to creep in there too – as she dreamed about #5G.

Billie was so obsessed with 5G that she thought nothing of using her tablet while bubba slept, while it connected to the wi-fi.

The humidifier in bubba’s room that was causing mould to grow on the ceiling didn’t even enter her mind.

The perfume she spritzed on her body and clothes didn’t get a mention.

She was so caught up in the one issue, that she saw nothing else.

Not surprisingly, she was blinded by her obsession with one environmental stressor.

Billie is not alone. Environmental Stressors are Hugely Important

Billie’s story is not unique. I see this time and time again – be it around #SmartMeters, #fragrances, #lead, #mould… any #EnvironmentalStressor. 

Whilst it is valid to be informed and proactive, there are quite a lot of issues with this kind of blinkered focus on one thing. 

In a nutshell, the issues are:

🤷🏽‍♂️ There is a lot of mis-information, hype and well-marketed nonsense. As a result, you can end up spending a lot of time and money on unnecessary things

🔎 With all the mis-information, you might end up doing something that could make things worse

🔍 Usually, when my team and I assess homes of people like Billie, we find all sorts of other problems that are much larger issues than the one they are stressing about… the blinkers need to come off to be able to address the bigger picture

And yet, there is much more to this…

It is one small word that has massive ramifications.

🔎 It is #stress 🔎 

Stress can cause a whole gamut of problems. It can:

😡 Reduce your ability to #detoxify 

😞 Negatively impact your #sleep (and as a result, your mood)

😕 Cause a release of all sorts of chemicals in the body that ultimately reduce your #resilience 

AND, this next one is the worst of all, in my opinion.

😔 Stress can cause you to freeze up, become #overwhelmed and take NO action

I believe strongly in taking #empowered action.

There is always something you can do to make a difference.

Even if it feels small, it is enormous! 

So, I urge you to keep perspective, to open your heart to the wonderful things in life, and draw inspiration to take empowered action.

One of my favourite recommendations is to put flowering plants in your garden (or balcony). This will help the birds, bees, insects and your loved ones. 

Take a moment to imagine how the world would benefit if every single person did this? 


Air Quality – Understanding the Information

With the bushfires that destroyed so much of Australia in the summer of 2020, air quality became a bit of an obsession – and rightly so with all the smoke that our fires have produced spreading globally.

There are apps and websites and indexes…

There is PM2.5, PM10, TVOC, CO, AQI and on it goes.

But do you understand what it is all about?

For some, just getting the colour indication that it is unhealthy, hazardous or not is enough.

For others, it is important to wrap your head around this. I have put this together for you. 🙂

Air Quality: Making Sense of the Abbreviations

PM2.5 and PM10

These refer to particulate matter of different sizes. “Particulate matter” is particles in the air.

The numbers, eg 2.5 and 10, refer to the size of the particles; so 2.5 microns or 10 microns.

This is important because there are different health implications based on the sizes.

The larger particles are “inhalable” – as in, you can breathe them in, and they are likely to get stuck in your upper respiratory tract. This is certainly the case for PM10.

The smaller particles, eg PM2.5 are “respirable.” This means that they can get into the lungs.

The US EPA have put together a brochure on “Particle Pollution and Your Health” which you can download here. In this they


This stands for Total Volatile Organic Compounds.

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) come from a variety of sources and can be assessed individually. However, for this topic, they are lumped together to get an overall total.

VOCs can best be understood by way of the supermarket cleaning aisle. You know when you are approaching the cleaning section because of the smell… that is the off-gassing of the VOCs from those products.

Ozone, CO (Carbon Monoxide), Sulphur Dioxide

These are all gases which can be problematic to health.


This is the Air Quality Index which takes into consideration a number of air quality issues and rates the air.

It is an index that is used throughout the US to predict/forecast as well as record air pollutants – ozone, PM, CO, nitrogen dioxide and sulphur dioxide.

The scale has been developed based on health effects of having breathed in the air for a few hours.

Therefore, in a nutshell, if you are a sensitive person, or someone with lung or heart issues, elderly or pregnant, levels over 100 may be an issue, and you need to protect yourself.

If none of those apply, levels over 200 are considered unhealthy, and the hazardous.

Image source: US EPA

Another resource that the US EPA have put together is this article, How Smoke from Fires Can Affect Your Health.

Want to Know More about Air Quality?

The US EPA have a brochure on the AQI which you can download here.

While all of this is important to know and understand, please note that the apps and sites mentioned initially are measuring and assessing ambient air (outdoor air), and not indoor air. There are many instances where indoor air can be more polluted than outdoor air. This can be due to many internal sources, such as new furnishings, paint, floor finishes, and so on.

It is my professional opinion that many buildings should have air purifiers.

My personal preference is that I would rather a machine with a filter captures all of these pollutants, and not my nose and lungs.

Want to understand more about what you can do to create a healthy home or workplace?

#airquality #smoke #health #airpurifier #airqualityindex #PM2.5 #PM10 #particulatematter