Three Healthy Reasons to Put Up a Real Tree This Season

For many Michigan families, ‘tis the season to string the lights, deck the halls and put up the Christmas tree. But deciding to put up a tree is only the first step; choosing between a real tree and an artificial one is the prickly question.

With strong feelings on both sides of the tree debate, there really isn’t a correct choice. Deciding which is right for your family is a personal choice. But if you do pick a real pine this season, here are three healthy benefits of going true green:

  1. Your fake tree may also cause allergy symptoms: Many people who opt for fake trees do so because of allergies or sensitivity to the real pine scent. But if you store your tree in a damp, dark area such as a garage or cellar, it could be holding years of mold, dust or dirt that can also trigger a reaction. Talk to your doctor if you have concerns about your allergies this holiday season.
  2. A real tree can help you feel as good as it smells: There’s nothing like the smell of fresh pine to get you in the holiday spirit. Having a real tree in your home can provide aromatherapy benefits to help with stress relief during the Christmas chaos. Essential pine tree oil also has been linked to infection-fighting abilities as well as relief for achy muscles from hanging all those bulbs.
  3. Grandma’s old fake tree could have unsafe levels of lead: Some people have concerns over the polyvinyl chloride (also known as PVC) material used to create most fake trees. A 2008 U.S. Environmental Protection Agency report found that when artificial Christmas trees start to degrade after years of use, lead exposures can occur and “in the worst-case scenarios a substantial health risk to young children is quite possible.” To be certain to avoid chemicals this Christmas, opt for an organic tree.

If you decide to purchase a real tree this Christmas, Michigan has plenty “choose and cut” farms as well as retail lots for you to find your family tree. Click here to view a full list.

Whichever you choose, be sure to follow these important tips to keep your home safe from holiday house fires.

Which side of the tree debate are you on? What are some other benefits of having real greenery?

Photo credit: Fabrizio Russo

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