Thursday, March 25, 2010

Organic & Natural Living Thursday!

Simple Ideas to Reduce Toxins & Chemicals in the Kitchen

As many of you know, our family is on a journey to going organic. Along with that, one of our goals is to reduce the toxins and chemicals in our household. To start, I've been reevaluating what we use in the kitchen. Here are some of the ideas I've come up with.

Use a Green spray cleaner on the counter tops (or make your own!). Many of the sprays or wipes, especially ones that have anti-bacterial ingredients in them actually contain chemicals that are listed as hazardous to the health of humans and pets.

Here's one of the simplest recipies for green kitchen cleaner I've found:
Combine equal parts vinegar and water in a spray bottle. To boost the cleaning power, put it in a glass bowl and heat in the microwave. Couldn't get much easier than that!

Replace aerosol non stick sprays like Pam with an oil sprayer. Not only are you able to reuse it, you are not adding propellants to your foods by using non stick oil from a can. I got mine for $15 at Kitchen Kaboodle. While it doesn't work quite as well as an aerosol one, knowing that I'm not adding chemicals to our food makes up for it by far!

Read over the ingredients in your premade spice packets like taco seasoning, seasoning salt, bullion cubes, etc. Many of them include MSG, and other unnatural additives.

Replace your non stick pots and pans with stainless steel or cast iron.

Reevaluate your use of plastics. Most of our food (even organic) is packaged in plastic, so it's going to be impossible to eliminate it altogether, but we can reduce. A couple ideas: switch out your Tupperware for glass storage containers with plastic lids for leftovers. Use glass or ceramic plates, bowls, and cups. Make sure the sippy cups, bottles, utensils, plates, bowls, etc. your kids are using is made with BPA free plastic.

I've been going through all the stuff my kids use and have been throwing out anything in question. One other thing to think about....milk containers and water bottles. Any milk jugs or water bottles made from clear plastic (or clear colored) contain BPA, including organic. And of course, never, never heat anything up in a plastic container!



Anonymous said...

Costco has the glass containers with the snap on lids. I replaced the plastic containers that I put my husband's lunch in with the glass ones. They work great!

ya ya's mom said...

I found some great glass lunch type containers with snap on lids at world market yesterday. They pair nicely with the $10/30 purchase coupon that was in the paper.

Amy said...

Does anyone have any tricks for getting bread out of a bread pan when using the oil sprayer? I've been using one for two years now, but when I'm making bread I often end up trying to get the bread out of the pan with a knife. Also, do you have any home made countertop cleaning recipes that are safe for granite? I've been using 7th Gen soap with water and Method brand cleaner, but a home made recipe would be great. Thanks for the post.