90% of breast cancer could likely be prevented if everyone did some of these 12 things


By Dr. Mercola

Breast cancer is probably one of the most feared diagnoses a woman can get. The mere mention of it conjures up images of death, despair, or at best, disfigurement.

According to breastcancer.org,1 one in eight women will develop invasive breast cancer in her lifetime, and nearly 40,000 women lose their lives to the disease each year.

With such odds stacked against you, what, if anything, can you do to prevent becoming a statistic? In truth, there are many measures you can take—each of which will help decrease your risk.

It’s important to realize that less than 10 percent of all breast cancer cases are thought to be related to genetic risk factors.2 The remainder—90 percent—appear to be triggered by environmental factors.

I strongly believe that cancer is preventable through appropriate lifestyle changes, such as cleaning up your diet, optimizing your vitamin D levels, exercising, and avoiding toxins from every source you can.

This means taking careful inventory of the household and personal care products you use, and the furnishings and other potentially toxic items you get into contact with on a daily basis. Toxic overexposure undoubtedly play a major role in cancer development, and recent studies are finally starting to shed light on the worst offenders.

Scientists Identify ‘Highest Priority’ Toxins for Breast Cancer Prevention

According to recent research published in the National Institutes of Health (NIH) journal, Environmental Health Perspectives,3 you can reduce your risk of breast cancer by avoiding certain chemicals found in common, everyday products. As reported by Rodale:4

“Because the study found that animal tests are able to predict likely human breast carcinogens, the new report could serve as a major step forward in breast cancer prevention, expanding the list of possible breast cancer triggers. That’s especially important because only about 10 percent of breast cancers are genetic in nature—scientists believe environment plays a huge role…

‘Every woman in America has been exposed to chemicals that may increase her risk of getting breast cancer. Unfortunately, the link between toxic chemicals and breast cancer has largely been ignored,’ says Julia Brody, PhD, study author and executive director at Silent Spring Institute. ‘Reducing chemical exposures could save many, many women’s lives.’”

In a previous study, the researchers had identified 216 chemicals that increase mammary gland tumors in rodents. In this paper, they narrowed the focus to 102 chemicals that large numbers of women are exposed to on a regular basis, through food, medications, air pollution, or consumer products.

They then prioritized the chemicals, and grouped them based on exposure, carcinogenic potential, and chemical structure. This sorting resulted in 17 chemical groups of related chemicals, which were flagged as “high priority” due to their ability to consistently produce mammary tumors in animal tests.

Top Offenders

Their list of cancer-causing chemical groups to avoid, and their most common sources of exposure, includes the following. Another 27 different carcinogens that do not fit into the chemical categories listed below are also considered high priority. These chemicals include certain ones found in pesticides, consumer products, and food.

Two examples of the latter are methyl eugenol, which is used in processed food as a natural and artificial flavoring, and nitrosamines in smoked meats. The researchers also list obesity and medical radiation as preventable risk factors, the latter of which would include unnecessary mammograms.

High Priority Chemicals to Avoid for Breast Cancer Prevention

Flame retardants: Flame retardant products, polyester resins, plastic polymers, and rigid polyurethane foams Acrylamide: Diet (especially starchy foods, such as French fries, cooked at high temperatures), tobacco smoke, and polyacrylamide gels in consumer products, such as diapers
Aromatic amines: Polyurethane, pesticides, Azo dyes, and many other products Benzene: Gasoline (riding in a car, pumping gasoline, and storing gasoline in a basement or attached garage), tobacco smoke, adhesive removers, paints, sealants, finishers, and engine fuel and oils
Halogenated organic solvents: Dry cleaning, hair spray propellant, soil fumigants, food processing, gasoline additives, and paint and spot removers Ethylene (EtO) and propylene oxide (PO): EtO is a gas used to sterilize medical equipment, food and spices, clothing, and musical instruments. Also found in tobacco smoke and auto exhaust. PO is a sterilant and fumigant. Also found in automotive and paint products
1,3-Butadiene: Cigarette smoke, automobile exhaust, gasoline fumes, and emissions from industrial facilities Heterocyclic amines: Meat cooked at high temperatures, and tobacco smoke
Endogenous and pharmaceutical hormones and other endocrine disrupting chemicals:Estrogens, progesterone, and DES, along with other hormones Non-hormonal pharmaceuticals that have hormonal activity: These include four chemotherapeutic agents, two veterinary drugs possibly present in food, the diuretic furosemide, the anti-fungal griseofulvin, and several anti-infective agents
MX: One of hundreds of genotoxic by-products of drinking water disinfection Perfluorooctanoic acid PFOA: Non-stick and stain-resistant coatings on rugs, furniture, clothes and cookware; fire-fighting applications, cosmetics, lubricants, paints, and adhesives
Nitro-PAHs: Air pollution, primarily from diesel exhaust PAHs: Tobacco smoke, air pollution, and charred foods
Ochratoxin A (a naturally occurring mycotoxin): Contaminated grain, nuts, and pork products Styrene: Food that has been in contact with polystyrene; consumer products and building materials, including polystyrene, carpets, adhesives, hobby and craft supplies, and home maintenance products

Flame Retardants Do FAR More Harm Than Good…

While it’s difficult to single out any particular chemical grouping as being “the worst,” fire retardants may fit the bill by the fact that they are used in so many furnishings, including your mattress, where you spend a significant portion of your life. Last year, I wrote about the deceptive campaigns that led to the proliferation of fire retardant chemicals. As reported in an investigative series “Playing With Fire” by the Chicago Tribune:5

“The average American baby is born with 10 fingers, 10 toes and the highest recorded levels of flame retardants among infants in the world. The toxic chemicals are present in nearly every home, packed into couches, chairs and many other products. Two powerful industries — Big Tobacco and chemical manufacturers — waged deceptive campaigns that led to the proliferation of these chemicals, which don’t even work as promised.”

An estimated 90 percent of Americans have flame-retardant chemicals in their bodies, and many studies have linked them to human health risks, including infertility, birth defects, lower IQ scores, behavioral problems in children, as well as liver, kidney, testicular, and breast cancers.

Flame-retardant chemicals belong to the same class of chemicals as DDT and PCBs (organohalogens), and like the former, they, too, build up in the environment. These chemicals also react with other toxins as they burn to produce cancer-causing dioxins and furans. The chemical industry claims that fire-retardant furniture increases escape time in a fire by 15-fold.

In reality, this claim came from a study using powerful, NASA-style flame retardants, which provided an extra 15 seconds of escape time. But this is not the same type of chemical used in most furniture, and government and independent studies show that the most widely used flame-retardant chemicals provide no benefit for people while increasing the amounts of toxic chemicals in smoke.

A flame-retardant chemical known as chlorinated tris (TDCPP) was removed from children’s pajamas in the 1970s amid concerns that it may cause cancer, but now it’s a ubiquitous addition to couch cushions across the United States. As for your mattress, I recommend getting one that’s either made of 100% wool or Kevlar, both of which are natural flame retardant without added chemicals.

Antiperspirants and Cosmetics—Other Major Culprits

Parabens are chemicals that serve as preservatives in antiperspirants and many cosmetics, as well as sun lotions. Previous studies have shown that all parabens have estrogenic activity in human breast cancer cells. Research published in 20126 found one or more paraben esters in 99 percent of the 160 tissue samples collected from 40 mastectomies. The consistent presence of parabens in cancerous human breast tissue suggests antiperspirants and other cosmetics may also increase your risk of breast cancer.

While antiperspirants are a common source of parabens, the authors note that the source of the parabens cannot be established and that seven of the 40 patients reportedly never used deodorants or antiperspirants in their lifetime. What this tells us is that parabens, regardless of the source, can bioaccumulate in breast tissue. And the sources are many. Parabens can be found in a wide variety of personal care products, cosmetics, as well as drugs. That said, it appears the dermal route is the most significant form of exposure. Another component of antiperspirants, aluminum chloride, has been found to act similarly to the way oncogenes work to provide molecular transformations in cancer cells.

Other Breast Cancer Prevention Strategies

In the largest review of research into lifestyle and breast cancer, the American Institute of Cancer Research estimated that about 40 percent of US breast cancer cases could be prevented if people made wiser lifestyle choices. I believe these are low-ball estimates. More than likely, 75 percent to 90 percent of breast cancers could be avoided by strictly applying the lifestyle modifications recommended below.

Key Dietary Guidelines

Avoid sugar, especially fructose. Reduce or eliminate processed foods, sugar/fructose, and grain-based foods from your diet. All forms of sugar are detrimental to health in general and promote cancer. Fructose, however, is clearly one of the most harmful. As a general guideline, limit your total fructose intake to less than 25 grams daily. If you have cancer or are insulin resistant, you would be wise to restrict it to 15 grams or less.
Limit protein and increase healthy fat: Consider reducing your protein levels to one gram per kilogram of lean body weight. It would be unusual for most adults to need more than 100 grams of protein and most likely close to half of that amount. Replace the eliminated protein and carbs with high-quality fats, such as organic eggs from pastured hens, high-quality meats, avocados, and coconut oil. There’s compelling evidence that a ketogenic diet helps prevent and treat many forms of cancer.
Get plenty of natural vitamin A. There is evidence that vitamin A plays a role in helping prevent breast cancer.7 It’s best to obtain it from vitamin A-rich foods, rather than a supplement. Your best sources are organic egg yolks, raw butter, raw whole milk, and beef or chicken liver. However, beware of supplementing as there’s some evidence that excessive vitamin A can negate the benefits of vitamin D. Since appropriate vitamin D levels are crucial for your health in general, not to mention cancer prevention, this means that it’s essential to have the proper ratio of vitamin D to vitamin A in your body.Ideally, you’ll want to provide all the vitamin A and vitamin D substrate your body needs in such a way that your body can regulate both systems naturally. This is best done by eating colorful vegetables (for vitamin A) and by exposing your skin to safe amounts of sunshine every day (for vitamin D).
Get sufficient amounts of iodine. Iodine is an essential trace element required for the synthesis of hormones, and the lack of it can also cause or contribute to the development of a number of health problems, including breast cancer. This is because your breasts absorb and use a lot of iodine, which they need for proper cellular function. Iodine deficiency or insufficiency in any of tissue will lead to dysfunction of that tissue, and tumors are one possibility.However, there’s significant controversy over the appropriate dosage, so you need to use caution here. There’s evidence indicating that taking mega-doses, in the tens of milligram range may be counterproductive. One recent study suggests it might not be wise to get more than about 800 mcg of iodine per day, and supplementing with as much as 12-13 mg (12,000-13,000 mcgs) could potentially have some adverse health effects.8
Nourish your gut: Optimizing your gut flora will reduce inflammation and strengthen your immune response. Researchers have found a microbe-dependent mechanism through which some cancers mount an inflammatory response that fuels their development and growth. They suggest that inhibiting inflammatory cytokines might slow cancer progression and improve the response to chemotherapy. Adding naturally fermented food to your daily diet is an easy way to prevent cancer or speed recovery. You can always add a high-quality probiotic supplement as well, but naturally fermented foods are the best.
Avoid GMOs: Avoid genetically engineered foods as they are typically treated with herbicides such as Roundup (glyphosate), which are likely to be carcinogenic. A French research team that has extensively studied Roundup concluded it’s toxic to human cells, and likely carcinogenic to humans. Choose fresh, organic, preferably locally growth foods.
Avoid charring your meats. Charcoal or flame broiled meat is linked with increased breast cancer risk. Acrylamide—a carcinogen created when starchy foods are baked, roasted, or fried—has been found to increase breast cancer risk as well.
Avoid unfermented soy products. Unfermented soy is high in plant estrogens, or phytoestrogens, also known as isoflavones. In some studies, soy appears to work in concert with human estrogen to increase breast cell proliferation, which increases the chances for mutations and cancerous cells.
Drink a quart of organic green vegetable juice daily. Please review my juicing instructions for more detailed information.
Add cancer-fighting whole foods, herbs, and spices to your diet, such as broccoli. To learn more about how anti-angiogenetic foods fight cancer, please see our previous article: “Dramatically Effective New Natural Way to Starve Cancer and Obesity.”
Curcumin. This is the active ingredient in turmeric and in high concentrations can be very useful in the treatment of breast cancer. It shows immense therapeutic potential in preventing breast cancer metastasis.9 To learn more about its use for the prevention of cancer, please see my interview with Dr. William LaValley.
Avoid drinking alcohol, or at least limit your alcoholic drinks to one per day.

 

Other Lifestyle Strategies for the Prevention of Breast Cancer

Optimize your vitamin D. Vitamin D influences virtually every cell in your body and is one of nature’s most potent cancer fighters. There are well over 800 references in the medical literature showing vitamin Ds effectiveness against cancerVitamin D is actually able to enter cancer cells and trigger apoptosis (cell death). Research has shown vitamin D kills cancer cells as effectively as the toxic breast cancer drug Tamoxifen, without any of the detrimental side effects and at a tiny fraction of the cost. Vitamin D works synergistically with every cancer treatment I’m aware of, with no adverse effects.According to Carole Baggerly, founder of GrassrootsHealth, as much as 90 percent of ordinary breast cancer may in fact be related to vitamin D deficiency. Most recently, a meta-analysis of five studies published in the March 2014 issue of Anticancer Research10 found that patients diagnosed with breast cancer who had high vitamin D levels were twice as likely to survive compared to women with low levels.11, 12, 13 The high serum group had an average vitamin D level of 30 nanograms per milliliter (ng/ml). Women in the low serum group averaged 17 ng/ml, which is the average vitamin D level found in American breast cancer patients.14

The researchers urge physicians to make vitamin D monitoring and optimization part of standard breast cancer care. According to the featured findings, you need at least 30 ng/ml of serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) to prevent cancer from spreading. That said, other research suggests you’d be better off with levels as high as 80 ng/ml. One 2011 study15, 16 found that a vitamin D level of 50 ng/ml is associated with a 50 percent lower risk of breast cancer.

Maintain a healthy body weight. This will come naturally when you begin eating right for your nutritional type and exercising. It’s important to lose excess body fat because fat produces estrogen, which can fuel breast cancer.
Improve your insulin/leptin receptor sensitivity. The best way to do this is by avoiding sugar and grains and making sure you are exercising regularly, ideally by incorporating the principles of Peak Fitness.
Avoid xenoestrogens. Xenoestrogens are synthetic chemicals that mimic natural estrogens. They have been linked to a wide range of human health effects, including reduced sperm counts in men and increased risk of breast cancer in women. There are a large number of xenoestrogens, such as bovine growth hormones in commercial dairy, plastics like bisphenol A (BPA), phthalates and parabens in personal care products, and chemicals used in non-stick materials, just to name a few.
Breastfeed exclusively for up to six months. Research shows this will reduce your breast cancer risk.17
Avoid wearing underwire bras. There is a good deal of data that metal underwire bras increase your breast cancer risk.
Avoid electromagnetic fields as much as possible. Limit your exposure and protect yourself from radiation produced by cell phones, towers, base stations, and Wi-Fi stations, as well as minimizing your exposure from radiation-based medical scans, including dental x-rays, CT scans, and mammograms. Items such as electric blankets can be particularly troublesome and increase your cancer risk.
Get enough sleep: Make sure you are getting enough restorative sleep. Poor sleep can interfere with your melatonin production, which is associated with an increased risk of insulin resistance and weight gain, both of which contribute to cancer’s virility.
Employ effective stress management tools: Stress from all causes is a major contributor to disease. Even the CDC states that 85 percent of disease is driven by emotional factors. It is likely that stress and unresolved emotional issues may be more important than the physical ones, so make sure this is addressed. My favorite tool for resolving emotional challenges is Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT).

Taking Control of Your Lifestyle Can Significantly Reduce Your Odds of Cancer

Preventing breast cancer is far more important and powerful than simply trying to detect it, and avoiding chemical hazards such as those reviewed above are a big part of any cancer prevention strategy. The question is, how do you avoid them when there are so many? My answer is to clean up your life to where your food, water, clothes, furnishings, and other products you come into regular contact with are as close to natural and unprocessed as possible.

This means seeking out organically-produced items—be it a piece of food, clothing, bed linens, laundry detergent, or shampoo. All of it counts, as it’s the accumulated exposure from all these varied sources that end up wreaking havoc. In the case of household cleansers and personal care items, you can inexpensively replace most or all of them with just a few simple, non-toxic ingredients. Coconut oil, for example, has countless uses around the house. Ditto for baking soda and vinegar. Many of the recommendations listed above will also automatically reduce your exposure to cancer-causing toxins.

11 Amazing Health Benefits and Uses of Baking Soda


You probably have at least one box of baking soda in your home right now. If you’re like many Americans, you might have a box in your pantry for baking, one in your refrigerator to absorb odors and another under your kitchen sink to use for cleaning.

Story at-a-glance

  • Baking soda can be used to remove plaque and odors from your teeth and also promotes whitening
  • Use baking soda for minor injuries, including insect bites, bee stings, poison ivy, splinters, and sunburn
  • Baking soda can be used as a natural deodorant, foot soak, detox bath, and exfoliator
  • A mixture of baking soda and water is often effective for relieving heartburn, indigestion, and ulcer pain

What you might not have considered is that baking soda can be used for health purposes, too, so you might want to stash another box in your medicine cabinet.

What Exactly Is Baking Soda?

It’s 100 percent sodium bicarbonate, which can be used as a leavening agent in baked goods. When mixed with an acid, baking soda reacts, making bubbles and giving off carbon dioxide gas, which causes dough to rise. Anecdotal reports throughout history suggest that many civilizations used forms of baking soda when making bread and other foods that required rising.

In its natural form, baking soda is known as nahcolite, which is part of the natural mineral natron. Natron, which contains large amounts of sodium bicarbonate, has been used since ancient times. And no, you don’t need to get aluminum-free baking soda (you are confusing that with baking powder), as baking soda is already aluminum free.…

For instance, the Egyptians used natron as a soap for cleansing purposes. However, it wasn’t until 1846 that Dr. Austin Church and John Dwight began to manufacture and sell the compound we know as baking soda today. By the 1860s, baking soda was featured in published cookbooks but was still primarily known as a cooking additive.1 By the 1920s, however, its versatility was expanded on and by the 1930s it was widely advertised as a “proven medical agent.”

11 Ways to Use Baking Soda for Your Health

You can purchase a box of baking soda for under $1, making it one of the least expensive home remedies to keep on hand. In addition to using it for minor accidents and injuries, baking soda can become a part of your regular hygiene routine.

1. Natural Deodorant

If you want to avoid the parabens and aluminum found in many deodorants and antiperspirants, try a pinch of baking soda mixed with water instead. This simple paste makes an effective and simple natural deodorant. You can also simply brush some dry baking soda under your arms.

2. Insect Bites and Poison Ivy

Apply a paste made of baking soda and water to insect bites to help relieve itching. You can also try rubbing the dry powder onto your skin. This is also effective for itchy rashes and poison ivy. Baking soda helps to relieve minor skin irritation and itching by neutralizing toxins and irritants on your skin’s surface.2

3. Heartburn, Indigestion, and Ulcer Pain

Most over-the-counter antacids contain some form of bicarbonate. Baking soda works by immediately neutralizing stomach acid, helping to relieve heartburn, indigestion and even ulcer pain. I have personally recommended this to many, including family members, and have been surprised how remarkably effective it is.

Dosing is typically ½ teaspoon fully dissolved in a half a glass of water, taken every two hours (do not take more than seven ½ teaspoons in 24 hours, or three ½ teaspoons if you’re over 60).3

This should only be used as an occasional (not chronic) treatment, however, and be careful not to consume excessive amounts, which can cause serious electrolyte and acid/base imbalances.4

4. Foot Soak and Exfoliator

Add three tablespoons of baking soda to a tub of warm water for an invigorating foot soak. You can scrub your feet with a baking soda paste for additional exfoliation. A paste made from three parts of baking soda combined with one part water can be used as an exfoliator for your face and body, too. It’s natural, inexpensive and gentle enough to use every day.

5. Relaxing Soak

Baking soda and apple cider make a wonderful spa-like bath for soaking. It also cleans the tub and the drain, as a bonus!

6. Hand Cleanser

Mix three parts baking soda with one part of water to make a natural hand cleanser that will scrub away dirt and neutralize odors.

7. Splinter removal

Add a tablespoon of baking soda to a small glass of water, then soak the affected area twice a day. Many splinters will come out on their own after a couple of days using this treatment.

8. Sunburn Remedy

Add ½ cup of baking soda to lukewarm bathwater, then soak in the tub for natural relief. When you get out, let your skin air dry, rather than toweling off the excess baking soda, for extra relief. You can also add a mixture of baking soda and water to a cool compress and apply it to the sunburn directly.

9. Enhanced Sports Performance

Distance runners have long engaged in a practice known as “soda doping” — or taking baking soda capsules — before races to enhance performance, a measure that’s thought to work similarly to carbohydrate loading. It’s also been shown to improve speed among swimmers.5 While I don’t suggest you try this at home, it’s another example of baking soda benefits. Researchers noted:6

Essentially, sodium bicarbonate is an alkali substance that increases the pH of the blood. This seems to reduce and offset the acidity produced in the muscles during intense, anaerobic exercise that produces lactic acid most quickly, such as fast running or swimming.”

10. Tooth and Gum Paste

Baking soda has a mild abrasive action that helps to remove plaque and polish, clean, and deodorize your teeth.7 One review of data from five controlled clinical studies found that toothpaste containing baking soda “enhanced plaque removal effectiveness of tooth brushing to a significantly greater extent” than brushing with a non-baking soda toothpaste.8

Baking soda also has antibacterial activity and has been found to kill Streptococcus mutans bacteria – a significant contributor to tooth decay.9 For an incredibly effective tooth and gum paste, use a mixture of six parts of baking soda to one part of sea salt.

Place them in a blender and mix for 30 seconds, then place in a container to use. Wet the tip of your index finger and place a small amount of the salt and soda mixture on your gums.

Starting with the upper outside gums and then the inside of the upper, followed by the lower outside of the gums then the lower inside, rub the mixture onto your teeth and gums. Spit out the excess. After 15 minutes rinse your mouth. This mixture is incredibly effective at killing bacteria.10

You need to exert some caution in this area though as many believe baking soda can be too abrasive on your enamel, and Dr. Curatola believes that killing the oral microbiome may be highly counterproductive.

11. Teeth whitener

For a natural way to whiten your teeth, crush one ripe strawberry and mix it with 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda. Spread the mixture onto your teeth and leave on for five minutes. Then brush your teeth and rinse. This method should be used no more than once a week, as excessive use could potentially damage your tooth enamel.

How to Use Baking Soda as a Natural Cleanser

If you find it hard to believe that something as simple and inexpensive as baking soda could really clean your home, consider this: baking soda was used to clean and restore the inner copper walls of the Statute of Liberty during its 1986 restoration. It effectively removed grime without damaging the copper11 – so think it might work around your home, too? Here are some of baking soda’s top uses for cleaning:

 

Baking soda is great to scrub your bath and kitchen with. Put it in a glass grated cheese container with a stainless steel top that has holes in it, and just sprinkle the baking soda on the surfaces and scrub. You may add a few drops of your favorite essential oil to this. Lavender and tea tree oil have potent anti-bacterial qualities. Baking soda mixed with apple cider vinegar is a bubbly combination that has many uses. As a drain cleaner, sprinkle baking soda down the drain, then add apple cider vinegar and let it bubble for 15 minutes, then rinse with hot water. This is a safer alternative to dangerous drain cleaners.
Soak pots and pans in hot water and baking soda for 15 minutes to easily wipe away baked-on food. Use baking soda to scrub your barbecue grill.
Clean baby toys in a mixture of 4 tablespoons of baking soda and 1 quart of water. Baking soda can also be used as a fabric softener in your laundry, or to get your clothes whither and brighter (add one cup to your laundry load).
Baking soda is a natural carpet cleaner. Sprinkle it onto carpets, let it sit for 15 minutes, then vacuum it up. To polish silver without using toxic silver polish, fill your kitchen sink with hot water, add a sheet of aluminum foil and baking soda, and let the silver pieces soak until clean. It is an easy and fun way to clean silver.
Sprinkle baking soda in your shoes for a natural deodorizer. In the event of a minor grease fire in your kitchen, use baking soda to help smother out the flames.
Sprinkle baking soda on a vegetable brush to help remove dirt and residue from fruits and veggies.

 

Make a paste of baking soda and water and use it to scrub away grime from your shower and bath.

Watch the video. URL:https://youtu.be/VMoLIU0Kxlw

Source:mercola.com

11 Amazing Health Benefits and Uses of Baking Soda


Story at-a-glance

  • Baking soda can be used to remove plaque and odors from your teeth and also promotes whitening
  • Use baking soda for minor injuries, including insect bites, bee stings, poison ivy, splinters, and sunburn
  • Baking soda can be used as a natural deodorant, foot soak, detox bath, and exfoliator
  • A mixture of baking soda and water is often effective for relieving heartburn, indigestion, and ulcer pain

ou probably have at least one box of baking soda in your home right now. If you’re like many Americans, you might have a box in your pantry for baking, one in your refrigerator to absorb odors and another under your kitchen sink to use for cleaning.

What you might not have considered is that baking soda can be used for health purposes, too, so you might want to stash another box in your medicine cabinet.

What Exactly Is Baking Soda?

It’s 100 percent sodium bicarbonate, which can be used as a leavening agent in baked goods. When mixed with an acid, baking soda reacts, making bubbles and giving off carbon dioxide gas, which causes dough to rise. Anecdotal reports throughout history suggest that many civilizations used forms of baking soda when making bread and other foods that required rising.

In its natural form, baking soda is known as nahcolite, which is part of the natural mineral natron. Natron, which contains large amounts of sodium bicarbonate, has been used since ancient times. And no, you don’t need to get aluminum-free baking soda (you are confusing that with baking powder), as baking soda is already aluminum free.…

For instance, the Egyptians used natron as a soap for cleansing purposes. However, it wasn’t until 1846 that Dr. Austin Church and John Dwight began to manufacture and sell the compound we know as baking soda today. By the 1860s, baking soda was featured in published cookbooks but was still primarily known as a cooking additive.1 By the 1920s, however, its versatility was expanded on and by the 1930s it was widely advertised as a “proven medical agent.”

11 Ways to Use Baking Soda for Your Health

You can purchase a box of baking soda for under $1, making it one of the least expensive home remedies to keep on hand. In addition to using it for minor accidents and injuries, baking soda can become a part of your regular hygiene routine.

1. Natural Deodorant

If you want to avoid the parabens and aluminum found in many deodorants and antiperspirants, try a pinch of baking soda mixed with water instead. This simple paste makes an effective and simple natural deodorant. You can also simply brush some dry baking soda under your arms.

2. Insect Bites and Poison Ivy

Apply a paste made of baking soda and water to insect bites to help relieve itching. You can also try rubbing the dry powder onto your skin. This is also effective for itchy rashes and poison ivy. Baking soda helps to relieve minor skin irritation and itching by neutralizing toxins and irritants on your skin’s surface.2

3. Heartburn, Indigestion, and Ulcer Pain

Most over-the-counter antacids contain some form of bicarbonate. Baking soda works by immediately neutralizing stomach acid, helping to relieve heartburn, indigestion and even ulcer pain. I have personally recommended this to many, including family members, and have been surprised how remarkably effective it is.

Dosing is typically ½ teaspoon fully dissolved in a half a glass of water, taken every two hours (do not take more than seven ½ teaspoons in 24 hours, or three ½ teaspoons if you’re over 60).3

This should only be used as an occasional (not chronic) treatment, however, and be careful not to consume excessive amounts, which can cause serious electrolyte and acid/base imbalances.4

4. Foot Soak and Exfoliator

Add three tablespoons of baking soda to a tub of warm water for an invigorating foot soak. You can scrub your feet with a baking soda paste for additional exfoliation. A paste made from three parts of baking soda combined with one part water can be used as an exfoliator for your face and body, too. It’s natural, inexpensive and gentle enough to use every day.

5. Relaxing Soak

Baking soda and apple cider make a wonderful spa-like bath for soaking. It also cleans the tub and the drain, as a bonus!

6. Hand Cleanser

Mix three parts baking soda with one part of water to make a natural hand cleanser that will scrub away dirt and neutralize odors.

7. Splinter removal

Add a tablespoon of baking soda to a small glass of water, then soak the affected area twice a day. Many splinters will come out on their own after a couple of days using this treatment.

8. Sunburn Remedy

Add ½ cup of baking soda to lukewarm bathwater, then soak in the tub for natural relief. When you get out, let your skin air dry, rather than toweling off the excess baking soda, for extra relief. You can also add a mixture of baking soda and water to a cool compress and apply it to the sunburn directly.

9. Enhanced Sports Performance

Distance runners have long engaged in a practice known as “soda doping” — or taking baking soda capsules — before races to enhance performance, a measure that’s thought to work similarly to carbohydrate loading. It’s also been shown to improve speed among swimmers.5 While I don’t suggest you try this at home, it’s another example of baking soda benefits. Researchers noted:6

Essentially, sodium bicarbonate is an alkali substance that increases the pH of the blood. This seems to reduce and offset the acidity produced in the muscles during intense, anaerobic exercise that produces lactic acid most quickly, such as fast running or swimming.”

10. Tooth and Gum Paste

Baking soda has a mild abrasive action that helps to remove plaque and polish, clean, and deodorize your teeth.7 One review of data from five controlled clinical studies found that toothpaste containing baking soda “enhanced plaque removal effectiveness of tooth brushing to a significantly greater extent” than brushing with a non-baking soda toothpaste.8

Baking soda also has antibacterial activity and has been found to kill Streptococcus mutans bacteria – a significant contributor to tooth decay.9 For an incredibly effective tooth and gum paste, use a mixture of six parts of baking soda to one part of sea salt.

Place them in a blender and mix for 30 seconds, then place in a container to use. Wet the tip of your index finger and place a small amount of the salt and soda mixture on your gums.

Starting with the upper outside gums and then the inside of the upper, followed by the lower outside of the gums then the lower inside, rub the mixture onto your teeth and gums. Spit out the excess. After 15 minutes rinse your mouth. This mixture is incredibly effective at killing bacteria.10

You need to exert some caution in this area though as many believe baking soda can be too abrasive on your enamel, and Dr. Curatola believes that killing the oral microbiome may be highly counterproductive.

11. Teeth whitener

For a natural way to whiten your teeth, crush one ripe strawberry and mix it with 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda. Spread the mixture onto your teeth and leave on for five minutes. Then brush your teeth and rinse. This method should be used no more than once a week, as excessive use could potentially damage your tooth enamel.

How to Use Baking Soda as a Natural Cleanser

If you find it hard to believe that something as simple and inexpensive as baking soda could really clean your home, consider this: baking soda was used to clean and restore the inner copper walls of the Statute of Liberty during its 1986 restoration. It effectively removed grime without damaging the copper11 – so think it might work around your home, too? Here are some of baking soda’s top uses for cleaning:

 

Baking soda is great to scrub your bath and kitchen with. Put it in a glass grated cheese container with a stainless steel top that has holes in it, and just sprinkle the baking soda on the surfaces and scrub. You may add a few drops of your favorite essential oil to this. Lavender and tea tree oil have potent anti-bacterial qualities. Baking soda mixed with apple cider vinegar is a bubbly combination that has many uses. As a drain cleaner, sprinkle baking soda down the drain, then add apple cider vinegar and let it bubble for 15 minutes, then rinse with hot water. This is a safer alternative to dangerous drain cleaners.
Soak pots and pans in hot water and baking soda for 15 minutes to easily wipe away baked-on food. Use baking soda to scrub your barbecue grill.
Clean baby toys in a mixture of 4 tablespoons of baking soda and 1 quart of water. Baking soda can also be used as a fabric softener in your laundry, or to get your clothes whither and brighter (add one cup to your laundry load).
Baking soda is a natural carpet cleaner. Sprinkle it onto carpets, let it sit for 15 minutes, then vacuum it up. To polish silver without using toxic silver polish, fill your kitchen sink with hot water, add a sheet of aluminum foil and baking soda, and let the silver pieces soak until clean. It is an easy and fun way to clean silver.
Sprinkle baking soda in your shoes for a natural deodorizer. In the event of a minor grease fire in your kitchen, use baking soda to help smother out the flames.
Sprinkle baking soda on a vegetable brush to help remove dirt and residue from fruits and veggies. Make a paste of baking soda and water and use it to scrub away grime from your shower and bath.

Watch the video. URL:;https://youtu.be/VMoLIU0Kxlw

Baking Soda Is One of the Most Amazing Things You Could Use. Things you didn’t Know It Could Do!


It seems that baking soda is the cheapest health remedy in the whole world. It is beneficial for everything, from colds to cancer. Baking soda is the thing you need to have in your home. Some of the health benefits of it are reduced risk and prevention of drug intoxication, peptic ulcer, acidity metabolic acidosis, and diarrhea. It is also beneficial for the skin since it has antipruritic and anti-itch properties. It is a powerful home remedy for flu and common colds and also removes plaque. Being a rich sodium source it prevents kidney stones, bladder infection and hyperkalemia.

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Traditional remedies

  • A mixture of baking soda and water is an excellent way for muscle relief after a hard and intensive workout.
  • Use baking soda in order to remove grime and fungus from your nails. Put some baking soda on a nail brush and use it to scrub your nails.
  • Mix 1 tablespoon of peppermint essential oil, 3 tablespoons of baking soda and warm water. Soak your feet and hands into this mixture in order to relieve odor, soreness and itching.
  • Make a mixture form baking soda and water and use it for gargle. It will freshen up your breath.
  • Use baking soda as a toothpaste and brush your teeth with it. Just sprinkle some on your toothbrush.
  • Remove dead skin cells and surplus facial oil from your face with the help of baking soda. Mix 1 tablespoon of water and 1 tablespoon of baking soda and scrub your face gently.
  • Relieve itching from oak, poison ivy, insect bites, bee stings and etc.
  • Mix water and baking soda and apply it to herpes or cancer sores. It is going to dry them quickly.

Homemade Remedies For Acid Reflux

Make a mixture from ½ tablespoon of baking soda, 2 tablespoons of organic apple cider vinegar or fresh lemon juice. Use a kettle since it is going to fizz. After the bubbling stops add 8 oz. water. Drink this remedy at once. This remedy will balance the pH, it will make the acid reflux less painful and produce alkaline-forming environment in the body.

Use baking soda to ease GERD and heart burn symptoms. Just mix ½ tablespoon of baking soda and 16 oz. water.

Other Remedies

In Dr. Mark Sircus’ book, Sodium Bicarbonate, he explains Dr. Simoncini’s discoveries which are about cancer overgrowth and the search for alternative treatments which include baking soda. He suggests that we use a mixture of molasses and baking soda in order to prevent fungal infections and for cancer and diabetes prevention.

Treat urinary infection by drinking a mixture of ½ tablespoon of soda and 8 oz. water two times per day.

Mix baking soda and apple cider vinegar or lemon juice and ease thrombosis.

Make a mixture of warm water and 1 tablespoon of baking soda and douche in order to stop itching and destroy Candida yeast.

Warnings:

Women who are pregnant or those who breastfeed should not use baking soda. Children under the age of five should not use it as well. Despite the fact that if used correctly it is safe, baking soda can still cause some unwanted side effects and particularly if it is combined with prescribed drugs.

You must always use baking soda which is dissolved in liquid, never in a dry form. Do not use baking soda if you are in a diet which is low on sodium. Do not use baking soda longer than 14 days.

The Benefits Of Washing Your Face With Baking Soda!


A lot of people in the world have problems with enlarged pores around the nose area. These people, who usually suffer from this type of skin problem, usually get lots of dirt inside those pores, which eventually can cause acne or blackheads appearance. Well, we all know that it’s impossible to get rid of pores, because they are part of our skin. But, we can do other thing – we can make them smaller, and we can make that without spending too much money on expensive creams and other cosmetic products.

We can also mention that people who have more oily skin or so-called oily t-zone usually have larger pores, compared to those with drier skin. In this post we are going to show you the most effective, inexpensive and the best way to make your pores smaller.

The famous YouTube user, Angela Minji Kim, will show you in this video how to use the best ingredient – baking soda to reduce the appearance of enlarged pores. Angela Minji Kim noticed that baking soda is highly efficient and very useful in removing the dead skin cells buildup on your face and the dirt from the surface of your face.

Watch the video. URL:https://youtu.be/zecTmifMzHA

Oncologist Makes Ground-breaking Discovery: How To Cure Cancer With Baking Soda


http://supertastyrecipes.com/2015/11/oncologist-makes-ground-breaking-discovery-how-to-cure-cancer-with-baking-soda/

Tulio Simoncini is a former Italian oncologist in Rome who developed a theory that all cancer is caused exclusively by a fungus called Candida albicans.

 “Cancer is a fungus, called Candida albicans, and it can be treated using sodium bicarbonate”.

His natural cancer cure is actually a simple treatment. He believes that the body and tumor needs to be alkalized, and this can be done using a cheap, common compound. This is actually sodium bicarbonate which is used to tackle the Candida, shrink the tumor and thus stop metastases.

BAKING SODA AND HONEY REMEDY THAT DESTROYS EVEN THE MOST SEVERE DISEASE


It’s medically proven that all sugars are counter-beneficial when it comes to cancer simply because cancer cells feed on sugar. However, this natural remedy combining baking soda and honey or maple syrup acts in a completely different way.
For one thing, baking soda neutralizes cancer cells thus disabling them from using sugar to support their further growth. On the other hand, honey or maple syrup gives different effect on cancer cells, which use 15 times more glucose, in comparison to healthy cells. It’s because of the honey that baking soda enters and destroys cancer cells.
What you need:
Baking soda
Maple syrup or honey
How to prepare:
Mix baking soda and maple syrup or honey in a ratio 1:3. Stir until the ingredients blend well. Cook on low heat for about 10 minutes.
How to use:
Take 3 tsps. of this remedy each day for one month.

 

Avoid all kinds of meat, sugar and white flour during the treatment.

Read more at http://www.theinfopost.org/2015/11/baking-soda-and-honey-remedy-that.html#JiMAflGKIzMlqyJY.99

Itchy skin reliever – Surprising Beauty Uses for Baking Soda.


http://www.health.com/health/m/gallery/0,,20904678_12,00.html?xid=socialflow_facebook_health

itchy-skin-reliever

Baking Soda: The Nightmare Of The Pharmaceutical Industry


Most people use baking soda to keep odors out of their fridge and pantries. But, the pharmaceutical industry hates baking soda!

baking soda

Cancer is lactic acid, which is formed when a fungus or mold lives in an environment that is void of oxygen. It was also discovered that when passing a high concentration of oxygen molecules through cancer cells, it could destroy them. It’s difficult for people to understand the idea that a substance common like sodium bicarbonate can offer more benefits than just getting rid of odors.

Baking soda provides more benefits and can cure a lot of serious diseases like cancer and diabetes. It is widely researched and has been used for several years. The toxicity of chemo and radiation can destroy vital organs of the body like the liver and the kidneys and is usually given periodically to patients to prevent this possibility.

An issue regarding human physiology is the problem with the lack of bicarbonate ions which results in a decrease in the pH value of the blood. Enzymes are essential to the biochemical reaction, and they are sensitive to pH levels. They work in a non-acidic environment and that means that cells function better is a slightly alkaline environment that gives credence to baking soda.

 Baking soda helps transport oxygen by dilating the blood vessels and releasing oxygen into the cell tissues which increases the pH value. When pH value of urine is high, there isn’t crystallization of waste products in the urinary tract. Uric acid causes gout, kidney stones, diabetes and heart diseases. Alcosan that is a toxic compound that is formed by fungi in an acidic environment has been shown to cause various cancers and diabetes. Taking baking soda orally, serious diseases like arthritis, gout, the flu can be prevented.

Sources:

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/02/02/11-health-benefits-baking-soda.aspx

http://www.drwhitaker.com/7-baking-soda-health-benefits

http://drsircus.com/medicine/sodium-bicarbonate-baking-soda

Countless Uses for Coconut Oil – The Simple, the Strange, and the Downright Odd


Story at-a-glance

  • Coconut oil is a powerful inhibitor of a large variety of pathogenic organisms, from viruses to bacteria to protozoa, largely due to its naturally high lauric acid content
  • Besides internal health benefits, coconut oil has countless other uses, from topical beauty applications, to oral health and first aid treatments, to general household cleaning and sanitizing
  • Learn how coconut oil can replace 14 of your most commonly used beauty products and beautify even hard-to-control hair
  • Ten simple first aid and medicinal uses for coconut oil are reviewed, from treating ear infections and nosebleeds to soothing hemorrhoids and cold sores, to combating head lice without toxic potions
  • Also included are 14 surprising uses for coconut oil around the house, such as sanitizing and conditioning wooden cutting boards, moisturizing leather goods and lubricating everything from squeaky hinges to guitar strings

Coconut oil has been a dietary and beauty staple for millennia. It’s a powerful destroyer of all kinds of microbes, from viruses to bacteria to protozoa, many of which can be harmful, and provides your body with high-quality fat that is critical for optimal health.

Around 50 percent of the fat in coconut oil is lauric acid, which is rarely found in nature. In fact, coconut oil contains the most lauric acid of any substance on Earth.

Your body converts lauric acid into monolaurin, a monoglyceride that can actually destroy lipid-coated viruses such as HIV and herpes, influenza, measles, gram-negative bacteria, and protozoa such as giardia lamblia.

This is undoubtedly part of what makes it so medicinally useful—both when taken internally and applied externally.

Coconut oil is comprised of medium chain fatty acids (MCFAs) that are easily digested and readily cross cell membranes. MCFAs are immediately converted by your liver into energy rather than being stored as fat. This is in part why I recommend coconut oil as an ideal replacement for non-vegetable carbohydrates.

Coconut oil is easy on your digestive system and does not produce an insulin spike in your bloodstream, so for a quick energy boost, you could simply eat a spoonful of coconut oil, or add it to your food. In the video above, I also share my recipe for a scrumptious yet healthful chocolate treat, courtesy of the healthy fat from coconut oil.

To get more coconut oil into your diet, you can add it to your tea or coffee, in lieu of a sweetener. It will also help improve absorption of fat-soluble vitamins, so taking a spoonful of coconut oil along with your daily vitamins may help boost their effectiveness.

Coconut oil is ideal for all sorts of cooking and baking, as it can withstand higher temperatures without being damaged like many other oils (olive oil, for example, should not be used for cooking for this reason).

Furthermore, coconut oil does not go rancid, which is a huge boon when you’re making homemade concoctions. Coconut oil that has been kept at room temperature for a year has been tested for rancidity, and showed no evidence of it. Since you would expect the small percentage of unsaturated oils naturally contained in coconut oil to become rancid, it seems that the other (saturated) oils have a powerful antioxidant effect.

General Health Benefits of Coconut Oil

In all, coconut oil offers a truly impressive array of health benefits when included in your daily diet. In addition to its antimicrobial properties, coconut oil is beneficial for:

Promoting heart health Supporting proper thyroid function
Promoting healthy brain function Strengthening your immune system
Providing an excellent “fuel” for your body and supporting a strong metabolism that can aid in weight loss Maintaining healthy and youthful looking skin

 

While coconut oil is an ideal food for fostering health and beauty from the inside out, it also has a staggering number of other uses, from topical beauty applications to first aid treatments, to general household cleaning.1, 2 Once you’re done reading through this article, you’ll probably be inspired to stock up for all eventualities!

Coconut Oil Can Replace Dozens of Beauty and Personal Care Products

 

One of the best personal care products you’ll ever find may be sitting in your kitchen cupboard right now. The video above, featuring HolisticHabits3 blogger and coconut oil aficionado Sarah, recounts many of its beauty uses. The second video includes a recipe making your own coconut oil-based deodorant. A previous article by Delicious Obsessions4 also lists no less than 122 creative uses for this household staple, including 21 DIY coconut oil skin care recipes.5For example, coconut oil can be used to replace the following personal care and beauty products.

Makeup remover: Swipe on with a moist cotton ball. Wipe off with clean cotton ball or wet washcloth.
Facial cleanser: Massage a dollop of coconut oil onto face and neck. Wash off with wet washcloth and pat dry.
Body scrub: Mix equal parts coconut oil with organic cane sugar in a glass jar. Use the scrub on dry skin prior to your shower or bath.
Facial scrub: Instead of sugar, mix coconut oil with baking soda, or oatmeal with a dash of cinnamon, for a gentle facial scrub.
Shaving lotion: Apply a thin layer of coconut oil on area to be shaved, and shave as usual. The lauric acid in the coconut oil will also serve as an antiseptic for cuts that result from shaving.
Face and body moisturizer: You can use it either by itself, or add your favorite essential oil. (Make sure you’re using a high quality essential oil that is safe for topical application.) The featured article6 also suggests whipping the coconut oil with an electric mixer to produce a fluffy moisturizer that stays soft and spreadable even in cooler temperatures.

When applied topically, coconut oil helps to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles by helping to keep your connective tissues strong and supple, and aids in exfoliating the outer layer of dead skin cells, making your skin smoother.

Eye cream: Apply a thin layer of coconut oil around your eyes to soften wrinkles and counteract thinning, sagging skin.
Cuticle cream: Simply rub a small amount of coconut oil around your cuticles to soften dry areas.
Deodorant: Applying a small amount of coconut oil directly onto your armpits can help keep odors at bay, courtesy of the oil’s antibacterial properties. If you prefer, you can add a small amount of baking soda, or make a homemade deodorant using coconut oil, baking soda and arrow root powder. For directions, see the second video above. DeliciousObsessions.com also lists additional deodorant recipes using coconut oil as the base.7
Bath soak: Adding coconut oil to your bath can help moisturize dry itchy skin (Make sure to scrub your tub afterward to prevent slipping!). Make sure the water is warmer than 76 degrees Fahrenheit though, otherwise the oil will turn to a solid.
Soap: Coconut oil is one of the base ingredients in many homemade soap recipes, such as this one by NourishingJoy.com8
Lip balm: You can either apply a small amount of coconut oil, as is, or make your own lip balm using coconut oil as one of the base ingredients. You can find all sorts of recipes online, but here’s one by The Liberated Kitchen.9
Toothpaste: Mixed with baking soda, coconut oil can replace your regular toothpaste. The baking soda will gently cleanse while the coconut oil’s antibacterial action may help keep harmful bacteria in check. For recipes using essential oils to spruce up your toothpaste, seeDeliciousObsessions.com.10
Insect repellent: Mixing coconut oil with high-quality essential oils may help keep biting insects at bay when applied to exposed skin. Effective choices include: peppermint, lemon balm, rosemary, tea tree oil, neem, citronella(Java Citronella), geraniol, catnip oil (according to one study,11 catnip oil is 10 times more effective than DEET), and/or clear vanilla oil

Hair’s Best Friend

Coconut oil is also known for its hair benefits.12 Most women seem to prefer using it as a pre-shampoo conditioner. Simply massage the coconut oil onto dry hair and leave on for about an hour or longer. You could even leave it on overnight. Just wear a shower cap to protect your pillow. Then, wash and style as usual.

When applied in this manner, the coconut oil inhibits the penetration of water into the hair strands, which would otherwise cause the cuticle, or surface of the hair shaft, to rise, making it prone to damage and breakage. Furthermore, when applied as a pre-wash treatment, a small amount of the coconut oil is able to penetrate deeper into the hair shaft during the wash, when the hair fiber swells slightly.

This can also explain why so many rave about the oil’s ability to prevent “the frizzies” in humid weather—this is another feature of its hydrophobic activity. More porous types of hair may find coconut oil particularly beneficial, such as African and chemically treated hair, as well as those suffering with any type of scalp problems, including dandruff.

Oral Health Benefits

As mentioned above, coconut oil mixed with baking soda makes for very simple and inexpensive, yet effective, toothpaste. It’s also a great alternative if you want a fluoride-free toothpaste but don’t want to spend the extra money, since they tend to cost more than most regular, fluoridated toothpaste brands.

Another oral health technique where I believe coconut oil can be quite beneficial is oil pulling. This technique has significantly reduced my plaque buildup, allowing me to go longer between visits to the dental hygienist. (Adding fermented vegetables to my diet has been another game-changer in my oral health.)

Oil pulling is a practice dating back thousands of years, having originated with Ayurvedic medicine. When oil pulling is combined with the antimicrobial power of coconut oil, I believe it can be a very powerful health tool. Sesame oil is traditionally recommended, but it has relatively high concentration of omega-6 oils. Therefore, I believe coconut oil is far superior, and, in my mind, it tastes better. But from a mechanical and biophysical perspective, it is likely that both work.

Oil pulling involves rinsing your mouth with the oil, much like you would with a mouthwash. The oil is “worked” around your mouth by pushing, pulling, and drawing it through your teeth for a period of 15 minutes. If you are obsessive like me and want even better results, you can go for 30-45 minutes. This process allows the oil to “pull out” bacteria, viruses, fungi and other debris. The best time is in the morning before eating breakfast, but it can be done at any time. I try to do it twice a day if my schedule allows. When done, spit out the oil and rinse your mouth with water. Avoid swallowing the oil as it will be loaded with bacteria and whatever potential toxins and debris it has pulled out.

When done correctly, oil pulling has a significant cleansing, detoxifying and healing affect, not only for your mouth and sinuses but for the rest of your body as well. Candida and Streptococcus are common residents in your mouth, and these germs and their toxic waste products can contribute to plaque accumulation and tooth decay, in addition to secondary infections and chronic inflammation throughout your body. Oil pulling may help lessen the overall toxic burden on your immune system by preventing the spread of these organisms from your mouth to the rest of your body, by way of your bloodstream.

Coconut Oil to the Rescue

Besides its usefulness in the kitchen and bathroom, coconut oil deserves a place in your medicine cabinet as well—again courtesy of its antimicrobial and anti-viral activity. For example, coconut oil may be helpful in the treatment of:

Ear infections: Place a couple of drops into each ear canal. If the coconut oil has solidified, you can easily liquefy it by placing a small amount in a shot glass or other small container and placing it into a cup of hot water Skin rashes and irritations, including chicken pox and shingles: Simply apply a small amount to the affected area
Fungal and/or yeast infections, such as athlete’s foot and ringworm. For fungal infections, you can mix in a small amount of oregano oil or tea tree oil Bug bites and bee stings
Cold sores: mix in a small amount of oregano oil, and apply at the first signs Frequent nosebleeds may be improved by regularly applying a small amount to the inside of your nostrils
Thrush Hemorrhoids and piles: You may add a small amount of lavender essential oil for added healing power
Vaginal dryness Perineal massage:13 Expectant mothers can use it to massage the perineum daily, starting about a month or so before your due date, to help reduce your chances of tearing and/or the need for an episiotomy

Coconut Oil—More Effective Than Permethrin for Head Lice

According to research published in the European Journal of Pediatrics,14 a combination of coconut oil and anise was found to be nearly twice as effective as the commonly prescribed permethrin lotion for the treatment of head lice. According to the authors:

“We designed a randomized, controlled, parallel group trial involving 100 participants with active head louse infestation to investigate the activity of a coconut and anise spray and to see whether permethrin lotion is still effective, using two applications of product 9 days apart. The spray was significantly more successful (41/50, 82.0%) cures compared with permethrin (21/50, 42.0%…). Per-protocol success was 83.3% and 44.7%, respectively. Thirty-three people reported irritant reactions following alcohol contact with excoriated skin. We concluded that, although permethrin lotion is still effective for some people, the coconut and anise spray can be a significantly more effective alternative treatment.” [Emphasis mine]

Isn’t it wonderful to see how nature provides us with so many effective solutions to so many of our ills? And does so in a way that is oftentimes more effective than our chemical drug concoctions! Another anecdotal Hawaiian head lice treatment15 is to first soak your hair in vinegar and leave it in to dry (don’t rinse). Next, coat your hair with coconut oil over night. I’d recommend sleeping with a shower cap to protect your bedding. The following day, the nits reportedly comb out easily.

14 Surprising Uses for Coconut Oil Around the House

Last but not least, coconut oil can be used for a number of household tasks otherwise relegated to more costly, and potentially toxic, alternatives. Following are 14 creative yet practical uses for this fantastic oil:

1. Clean, condition and sanitize your wooden cutting board. Use whenever the wood starts to look dry.
2. Use when making compost tea16 for your garden to reduce foam.
3. Use as a metal polish. Make sure to test a small area first.
4. Moisturize and soften leather goods as you would using other leather conditioners.
5. Season your cast iron pots and pans17 using coconut oil in lieu of lard or corn oil.
6. Lubricate squeaky hinges and sticky mechanisms with coconut oil instead of WD-40.
7. Clean and condition wooden furniture in lieu of furniture polish. Make sure to test a small area first.
8. Lubricate your guitar strings.
9. Clean soap scum from your shower using a small dollop of coconut oil on a damp cloth. Spray the area with white vinegar and wipe dry with a lint-free cloth.
10. Clean your hands and paint brushes with coconut oil after using oil-based paints, in lieu of mineral spirits.
11. Clean and condition the inside of your car by adding a small amount to a soft lint-free cloth. Rub in and wipe off excess.
12. Clean and sanitize your mouth guard by applying a thin layer of coconut oil. Leave the coconut oil on when not in use. Rinse before using.
13. Cleanse and add a glossy finish to indoor plants by wiping the leaves with a small amount of coconut oil on a lint-free cloth.
14. Remove chewing gum from virtually any area, including carpets and hair.