Houseplants do more than look pretty and add to our home decor.

We all learned when we were young about photosynthesis and how plants take carbon dioxide out of the air, but plants can remove harmful compounds from indoor air pollutants that have been linked to conditions such as asthma, nausea, cancer and respiratory illnesses, too. They absorb everyday toxic compounds found in our homes like benzene found in some plastics, fabrics, pesticides and cigarette smoke and formaldehyde found in some cosmetics, dish detergent, fabric softener and carpet cleaner.

Here’s a list of seven super plants to help clean up your indoor air pollutants.

1. Spider plant. Likes bright, indirect sun – easy to grow.

Pollutants removed: formaldehyde and xylene

2. Ficus tree: likes bright indirect sun, allow soil to dry out in between watering.

Pollutants removed: benzene, formaldehyde

3. Peace lily. Grows best in shady areas. Keep soil moist without overwatering. Leaves are poisonous, so avoid areas where pets or children have access.

Pollutants removed: ammonia, benzene, formaldehyde

4. Boston fern. Likes cool locations, high humidity and indirect sun. Keep soil moist.

Pollutants removed: formaldehyde and xylene

5. Snake plant. A hard plant to kill. Likes occasional water and some sun.

Pollutants removed: benzene, formaldehyde and xylene

6. Aloe vera. A succulent that requires little water and lots of sun.

Pollutant removed: formaldehyde

7. English ivy. Easy to grow. Indirect sun plus occasional misting.

Pollutants removed: formaldehyde and reduces airborne mold by 94 percent

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