Two More Grocery Staples You Might Want to Buy Organic

For all those nights when wine and cereal count as a meal

What's the one thing we all learned from Shondaland Thursdays? Wine is a meal. No questions asked. And what about those nights when working a corkscrew and washing a glass is just too much work? Then cereal straight from the box totally counts.

To make those nights a little bit healthier (haha), we have a buying tip for you. Go organic. With interest in organic options growing, it's pretty easy to find your favorites in an organic option.

But, why should you cough up the extra couple of bucks for an organic bottle of Cabernet and or box of frosted flakes? While we think of those as food groups in their own, both are made with ingredients that are often heavily sprayed with pesticides, like grapes and grains.

Grapes, the essential ingredient in wine, are number 5 on EWG's dirty dozen list (1). So, if you should be picking up organic grapes if you are just going to eat them, you also probably to want to pick up organic for anything that highly relies on them as an ingredient. Even if you think you are safe because you aren't eating the outside, the grape skins are still part of the process and pesticides are getting in there (2). A tip we have learned when shopping for wine is you can also read the bottle for ones that are made with organic grapes. Because other ingredients are added to ferment the wine, it can be more difficult to get an organic certification for the wine itself, but they may have still used organic grapes. You can also look for wines with a biodynamic label, meaning they don't use pesticides and have a larger scope for how the farm should be run to create less waste.

Now, let's talk about cereal. Most cereals are made with oats, wheat, or another grain often grown in large fields that are commonly sprayed with pesticides. Even though the cereal is processed, and we aren't eating it fresh like berries or kale, there was a study done recently that found many cereals had traces of glyphosate (Monsanto's Roundup pesticide) (3, 4). That means, with every bowl (or handful - no judgement here), you are also getting some pesticides.

Sorry for the bad news that your fav meal might be introducing pesticides into your diet, but at least a bunch of brands are making organic options. Shop around and find your new go to brands. Bonus: the more you shop organic, the more you are also protecting those who grow the grapes and grains and telling companies that you appreciate the steps they are taking to use fewer pesticides in their products.


Why Creating Your Own Compost Might Be Easier Than You Think

We've got step-by-step instructions, tips and tricks to get you the best looking soil around (seriously!)

You made it! Now that you're here, don't run yet! Gone are the days when composting meant throwing a heap of your leftovers in the dirt and banking on magic to make some soil (not that you still can't). BUT, we've got everything you need to know to jump on the composting train, reduce your carbon footprint and start saving money on fertilizer without all the headache and mess.

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9 Veggies You Can Grow Indoors

Gourmet dinners with fresh veggies and no more plastic herb packets are in your future

What's better than having an indoor plant baby? How about one that gives you food? Even if you don't have a backyard, you can grow some vegetables and herbs on a windowsill inside. We found 9 veggies and herbs that are easy to grow inside and are useful to have on hand.

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Why You Should Care About Soil Contamination If You're Starting a Garden in Your Backyard

Here's the dirt-y details you're going to want to know and what to do about it

Dreary winter blues might have you dreaming of blue skies, warm weather and some home grown vegetables. But before you go jetting off to your nearest Home Depot or nursery, you might want to take a second and get to know your soil. We're serious! No, not the hello, my name is ____, more like the hey, what's in my soil? Not all soils are created equally and trust us when we say that you'll definitely want to make sure the soil you're using for growing food to eat is top notch!

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What All Those Certifications on Mattresses Actually Mean

Label Education: Decoding what GOTS, GOLS, Greenguard, Organic, and more mean

Choosing the right mattress is so important for sound sleep and health, yet with so many options the shopping can be confusing and stressful! Obviously you want to take comfort and pricing into consideration, but there are some chemical ingredients you might want to consider too. Standard synthetic foam mattresses can contain various harmful chemicals we don't want to be sleeping on. And these chemicals can evaporate into the air, or collect in house dust, which is yucky and no good for your family's health.

The great news is that there are a bunch of healthier alternatives, and these labels below can help you find them. We also have a roundup of 12 non-toxic mattress brands if you just want a quick guide to organic mattresses and natural mattresses you can buy.

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12 Non-Toxic Mattresses

options for every budget that are free of any harsh chemicals and petroleum-based foam, including organic mattresses

Step 1: Start researching organic mattresses or natural mattresses. Step 2: Get confused! Step 3: Look at our roundup where we did all the research on safe, well reviewed, comfy mattresses for you. Step 4: Order a healthy, non-toxic, organic mattress Step 5: Sleep more peacefully. We found options for every budget, so what are you waiting for?

All of the mattress brands we found use natural materials like 100% natural latex, organic cotton, and wool, and do not use petroleum-based foams or no chemical flame retardants. For our budget picks ($), a base model queen retailed for less than $1000. For the quality picks ($), a queen ran between $1000 and $2000. And the splurge picks ($) retailed for above $2000. Some brands use inner coils and some are made of just latex layers. We hope this list of natural mattress brands is a good starting place for a better night's sleep.

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Are your noisy neighbors and traffic noises from outside making you mad? Quite possibly! All the noise you experience throughout the day might be taking a toll on your health. Besides just being supremely annoying, studies show that noise pollution - yep that's really what it's called - is intricately linked to many mental and physical health problems.

Not only does the constant annoyance of irritating noises make people more anxious, but noise makes working more difficult. The noise itself disrupts memory, affects your ability to focus, and decreases performance (1). And if the noise is disrupting your sleep, then that might mean even more bad news!

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We all have our favorite lipstick. The one that we wear practically every day, is acceptable for work and going out, and that you are always sure to buy extras of, just in case the store runs out. Maybe yours is bright red, a nude pink, or maybe you like to go all out and wear a different shade every week. Regardless of how you get your perfect pout, it might be time to put on your detective hat and take a deeper dive into what makes your lips shine.

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