Do Not Eat These Recipes
Did you know that what you breathe and expose your skin to matters as much as for your health as what you eat?
Surprise! This week, I'm sharing some of my recipes that have nothing to do with cooking or eating. What they are about are healthy recipes for cleaning, that are also cheaper than the cleaning products you buy in the store.
It all started when I was 16 and began reacting to fragrances. With a migraine! I'll spare you all of the details as the story is really long. Fast forward 30 years, and I began having chronic migraines. That was when I put my detective hat on and learned more about migraines and triggers than a girl should have to know!
Except... I needed to know it to survive.
I did figure it all out and am now virtually migraine free.
It required research and finding better alternatives to every cleaning product at the grocery store.
Easy. Virtual every cleaning product and personal care product on the market contains fragrances or perfumes. And these fragrances are not necessarily healthy for us. You can't really know that because the ingredient list only has to say "fragrance" without telling you what is in that fragrance. The fragrance industry claims it's a "trade secret" so they don't have to list the ingredients.
Warning: Do not get me started talking about trade secrets! It infuriates me! I'll just leave it at the statement that the cleaning products are not healthy for humans, pets or children. If you want to know what is in your favorite product, I would direct you to the Environmental Working Group's website.
Rather than rant about the problems with most all cleaning products, I decided to just go my own way. To find solutions that are safer. Bonus: It turns out that they are cheaper than the products in the grocery store. One thing I've noticed about most products you buy on a regular basis is that they always have to be improved. It's a competition thing between the companies. They have to have the product that makes your clothes whiter and brighter AND improves your sex life! 😉 Better than the other guy. As a result, you wind up with crazy looking things like laundry detergent pods that must come with warnings about not eating them. And require child-safe packaging!
In reality, whether you ingest them, breathe them in, or absorb them through your skin, there are many, many chemicals that are just not healthy. Not for you. Not for your kids. And not for your pets.
CLEANING FRUITS & VEGETABLES
I'll start with a recipe that is related to cooking. I wash all my fruits and vegetables before using them. Maybe not all. I don't wash onions and I don't wash cabbage. Their outer layers are pulled off and tossed. Though I may rinse the cabbage, depending.
And, contrary to the advice from many, I do wash mushrooms. My sister, Conni, busted the myth that washing mushrooms would result in them taking on more water. It just ain't true.
Why wash your veggies? They all grow in dirt, for starters. And your root veggies, including beets, carrots, onions, potatoes, and radishes, grow in the ground. So we want to get that dirt off them. It's not going to make them pesticide free, though. That's why you buy organic. Any pesticides used on your veggies will wind up inside. That's a good reason to buy organic!
How do I wash them? There are all kinds of products you can find in the produce section for washing veggies. But don't waste your money.
Instead, buy vinegar. Large quantities of white vinegar. I buy it in gallon containers, several at a time.
When you get your veggies home, or whenever you're ready to use them. Put them in the sink with cold water and about a cup of your white vinegar. Pro tip: I never measure this! let them sit for 10 minutes or so. Then brush them off and rinse them.
Voila! Clean veggies for pennies!
This is a recipe that I use for cleaning showers and sinks and even glass shower doors. It helps remove hard water scale and soap scum. And, is good for cleaning and disinfecting. The original recipe called specifically for Dawn dish liquid. I believe that is because Dawn has worked hard to spread the rumor that Dawn is some miracle cleaner. Which, it is not. I currently buy Seventh Generation dish liquid. It works well AND it has no stinky fragrances!
Here's the recipe:
Grab a spray bottle
Measure 6 ounces (3/4 cup) of vinegar and pour into the bottle
Measure 2 ounces (1/4 cup) of hydrogen peroxide and pour into the bottle
Add in a few drops of your dish liquid
Shake it up and start cleaning.
If you have a bigger bottle and want to make more, the ration is 3:1 for the vinegar and peroxide.
So 12 ounces vinegar + 4 ounces peroxide yields 2 cups
and 18 ounces vinegar + 6 ounces peroxide yields 3 cups
You'll want to mix in small quantities though because the peroxide will turn to water in the light after a while.
Here’s a before & after shot of a mildew stain:
It’s not gone, but is nearly so!
What is all this vinegar magic? Vinegar has antiseptic qualities. It was even used by nurses during the bubonic plague to clean everything and slow infection.
I have several other cleaning recipes. If you’re interested, I could post some more here. That is, if enough people are interested and leave a comment below!