Crunchy Groovy Cleaning: All the Shine, None of the Toxins

feather duster

Our great-grandparents had the right idea about chemical-free cleaning.

You might not realize it, but household cleaning can be dangerous. Toxic chemicals and claustrophobic spaces may seem like snapshots out of a horror film, but they're right under your kitchen sink.

Most people know about the lethal mix of bleach and ammonia, but there are lesser known chemicals that pose similar threats, like allergies, asthma, sinusitis and bronchitis. Many of these chemicals reside in the household cleaners you use every day. The good news is that healthier, safer alternatives are just a few inches away, up in your cupboard. These eco-friendly options will keep the green in your wallet and not on your shower curtain.

To bust up that nasty clog in your drain, you don't need liquid plumber, you need baking goods (no, really). Just pour one-half cup of baking soda and one-half cup of white vinegar down the drain. Chase this combo with a pot of boiling water, which will break down the fats left behind by soaps and greases.

Commercial air fresheners may mask unwanted odors, but once that citrus melange wall plug-in fades, the funk from Mom's gym shoes and the stink of wet dog will return with a vengeance. To permanently absorb the odors, place baking soda or vinegar with lemon juice in small dishes around the house to absorb odors. You can also create your own potpourri out of your favorite herbs and spices.

If your darling granddaughter is a budding Georgia O'Keefe and she's turned your front hallway into her first gallery showing, consider wiping the walls down with a damp sponge and some baking soda. This will wipe away paint, crayon and maker (unless, of course, you want to hold on to her doodles of your poodle in case she gets famous!).

There's nothing more soothing than sunlight or moonglow filtering through a window. Unless, of course, that light is lost in a big smudge. Getting your windows crystal clear is easy-peasy: Just mix two teaspoons of white vinegar with one liter of warm water, and use newspaper or a cotton cloth to wipe them down. The texture of newsprint lets it cut through grit and grime; newsprint is also super-absorbent, so it holds the vinegar mix really well.

Got wood woes? If you've forgotten your coaster and fear that your favorite wooden coffee table is ruined forever, don't despair. If the stain is a “white ring” (new/shallow), use a hair dryer to try to evaporate the water trapped under the wood’s finish. If that doesn’t work, add a dollop of mayonnaise to the wooden surface and wipe it off after.

Salt and lime juice: margarita topping or rust remover. Actually, this dynamic duo does both! If you have a rusty faucet, shower rod or stove top, just sprinkle salt on the metal and add lime juice. Wait about two or three hours (depending on how bad the rust is) and scrub away the residue. Underneath, you'll find sleek, clean metal.

Does your tub look like the creature from the black lagoon's summer home? Rub it down with some baking soda and a damp sponge. Baking soda has been marketed as "the everyday miracle" and it truly is. Baking soda is a natural deodorizer, which also makes it an ideal toilet cleanser.

For more quick tips about breathin' easier and living more mindfully, check out Md.MD for Life magazine.

- Written by Marcus Dieterle, a senior in the Literary Arts program at Carver Center for Arts and Technology, where he serves as a managing editor of his school’s newspaper, Catalyst. In addition to journalism, he works in the genres of fiction, poetry, scriptwriting and acting as the sole sound source of stability among the goofballs — ahem, friends — that he has grown to adore

 

To schedule an appointment with one of our highly trained physicians and find out why LifeBridge Health is Baltimore's premier health care organization, call 410-601-WELL.

Print this entry

No Comments Yet.

Leave a comment

*

Facebook

Twitter

YouTube

LinkedId

Instagram

Follow Me on Instagram
  • Regram: @hopeforhenry . . . Lenny "Batman" Robinson dedicated his life to children. Today, on the second anniversary of his dealt, you can honor his life by making a donation in his memory to the Lenny Batman Robinson Hope for Henry Program at #SinaiHospital of Baltimore. http://bit.ly/2wfBLpb @lbrhopeforhenry . . . #Batman #Maryland #HopeForHenry #AlwaysRemember

    lifebridgehealth: "Regram: @hopeforhenry .
.
.
Lenny "Batman" Robinson dedicated his life to children. Today, on the second anniversary of his dealt, you can honor his life by making a donation in his memory to the Lenny Batman Robinson Hope for Henry Program at #SinaiHospital of Baltimore. http://bit.ly/2wfBLpb 
@lbrhopeforhenry .
.
.
#Batman #Maryland #HopeForHenry #AlwaysRemember"
    18
    1
  • The #Back2School season is here and #LifeBridgeHealth is helping to spread the word about how to make sure your child's health is in good shape before getting back into the classroom. Join us today (8/15) at 2:00pm for a #FacebookLive segment with Dr. Kumar from LifeBridge Health Pediatrics Baltimore North. #TuneIn #School #BackToSchool

    lifebridgehealth: "The #Back2School season is here and #LifeBridgeHealth is helping to spread the word about how to make sure your child's health is in good shape before getting back into the classroom. 
Join us today (8/15) at 2:00pm for a #FacebookLive segment with Dr. Kumar from LifeBridge Health Pediatrics Baltimore North. 
#TuneIn #School #BackToSchool"
    6
    0
  • This month, #LifeBridgeHealth launches "Medical Moment," a new series highlighting some amazing stories from LifeBridge Health. Watch for the first story on August 15 during #WBAL-TV 11 Baltimore's 5pm news. #Medical #Baltimore #Maryland #Hospital #Healthcare #MedicalMoments #LiveHealthy #BeHealthy #Community @WBALTV11

    lifebridgehealth: "This month, #LifeBridgeHealth launches "Medical Moment," a new series highlighting some amazing stories from LifeBridge Health. Watch for the first story on August 15 during #WBAL-TV 11 Baltimore's 5pm news.

#Medical #Baltimore #Maryland #Hospital #Healthcare #MedicalMoments #LiveHealthy #BeHealthy #Community @WBALTV11"
    16
    1
  • You definitely don't want to miss these adorable #cakepops at the #CarrollHospital #FarmersMarket today!! Swing by and grab a couple for the weekend along with some fresh, locally grown #fruits and #vegetables! The farmer's market runs between 12:30 - 4:30 pm, on the third level of the parking garage. See you there! #FarmersMarketWeek #FreshFood #Market #Farm #ShopLocal #ShopFresh #Maryland #Food #Cake #Dessert #LifeBridgeHealth

    lifebridgehealth: "You definitely don't want to miss these adorable #cakepops at the #CarrollHospital #FarmersMarket today!! Swing by and grab a couple for the weekend along with some fresh, locally grown #fruits and #vegetables! 
The farmer's market runs between 12:30 - 4:30 pm, on the third level of the parking garage. See you there! 
#FarmersMarketWeek #FreshFood #Market #Farm #ShopLocal #ShopFresh #Maryland #Food #Cake #Dessert #LifeBridgeHealth"
    24
    0
  • The partnership between #LifeBridgeHealth & Fitness and The Joel Gamble Foundation is a great example of our community commitment. #LifeBridgeHealth CFO and Executive Vice President David Krajewski stopped by a training session to see how #Parisi Speed School coaches are working with some local youth on building their self-confidence as well as their athletic skills. #Maryland #Baltimore #JoelGamble #NFL #Athlete #Athletic #Fitness #Training

    lifebridgehealth: "The partnership between #LifeBridgeHealth & Fitness and The Joel Gamble Foundation is a great example of our community commitment. #LifeBridgeHealth CFO and Executive Vice President David Krajewski stopped by a training session to see how #Parisi Speed School coaches are working with some local youth on building their self-confidence as well as their athletic skills.
#Maryland #Baltimore #JoelGamble #NFL #Athlete #Athletic #Fitness #Training"
    18
    0
  • In honor of International Assistance Dog Week, we’re spotlighting the Pet Therapy Program at #CarrollHospital. Therapy dogs like our friend Fleuri, pictured here, comfort patients and their families, and offer them a mental break. #IADW . . . #Dog #Dogs #TherapyDog #AssistanceDog #DogOfInstagram #PetTherapy #LifeBridgeHealth

    lifebridgehealth: "In honor of International Assistance Dog Week, we’re spotlighting the Pet Therapy Program at #CarrollHospital. Therapy dogs like our friend Fleuri, pictured here, comfort patients and their families, and offer them a mental break. #IADW .
.
.
#Dog #Dogs #TherapyDog #AssistanceDog #DogOfInstagram #PetTherapy #LifeBridgeHealth"
    23
    0
  • Are you seeing double? Today is the start of #TwinsDays, an observance founded in #Twinsburg, Ohio, which honors all multiples - identical, fraternal, young and old, #twins, triplets, quads — and their families. To celebrate the day, we asked twins with a connection to #LifeBridgeHealth to come forward - check out some of these great pictures! #Twinning #TeamLifeBridge #Double #Siblings

    lifebridgehealth: "Are you seeing double? Today is the start of #TwinsDays, an observance founded in #Twinsburg, Ohio, which honors all multiples - identical, fraternal, young and old, #twins, triplets, quads — and their families. To celebrate the day, we asked twins with a connection to #LifeBridgeHealth to come forward - check out some of these great pictures! #Twinning #TeamLifeBridge #Double #Siblings"
    12
    1
  • At #LifeBridgeHealth, #community is at the heart of everything we do. We were so pleased to participate in #NationalNightOut2017 events across our area last night, such as this one in #Towson with Dr. Gaurav Kumar, Dr. Anisa Mirza and practice manager Kristina Butcher. #Maryland #NNO #NationalNightOut #Safety

    lifebridgehealth: "At #LifeBridgeHealth, #community is at the heart of everything we do. We were so pleased to participate in #NationalNightOut2017 events across our area last night, such as this one in #Towson with Dr. Gaurav Kumar, Dr. Anisa Mirza and practice manager Kristina Butcher. #Maryland #NNO #NationalNightOut #Safety"
    17
    0
  • The Joel Gamble Foundation continued their 8 week Summer Health and Wellness Program at Lifebridge Health and Fitness with Coppin Academy High School & Western District Police Officers last week. We are thrilled to be a part of such a great and active organization! #thejoelgamblefoundation #baltimore #community #youth #youthprograms #positive #nfl #nflpa #nflalumni #leader #rolemodel #baltimore #health #healthy #fitness #weighttraining #westerndistrictstrong #weightlifting #hardwork #summer #health #LifeBridgeHealth

    lifebridgehealth: "The Joel Gamble Foundation continued their 8 week Summer Health and Wellness Program at Lifebridge Health and Fitness with Coppin Academy High School & Western District Police Officers last week. We are thrilled to be a part of such a great and active organization! 
#thejoelgamblefoundation #baltimore #community #youth #youthprograms #positive #nfl #nflpa #nflalumni #leader #rolemodel #baltimore #health #healthy #fitness #weighttraining #westerndistrictstrong #weightlifting #hardwork #summer #health #LifeBridgeHealth"
    29
    1
  • Felicia Graber, a #Holocaust #survivor, received a warm welcome from #Levindale residents and patients, and children from the #summer learning programs of Macedonia and Mt. Moriah Baptist Churches, at a recent kosher luncheon held in her honor. Ms. Graber shared her personal experiences in her presentation: Resilience in the face of the Holocaust. Thank you to Rabbi Jeffrey Orkin at Levindale Hebrew Geriatric Center and Hospital for arranging this event! #WeRemember #HolocaustSurvivor #History #Hospital #LifeBridgeHealth #Educate #Event

    lifebridgehealth: "Felicia Graber, a #Holocaust #survivor, received a warm welcome from #Levindale residents and patients, and children from the #summer learning programs of Macedonia and Mt. Moriah Baptist Churches, at a recent kosher luncheon held in her honor. Ms. Graber shared her personal experiences in her presentation: Resilience in the face of the Holocaust. Thank you to Rabbi Jeffrey Orkin at Levindale Hebrew Geriatric Center and Hospital for arranging this event!
#WeRemember #HolocaustSurvivor #History #Hospital #LifeBridgeHealth #Educate #Event"
    18
    0