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3 Surprising Ways to Use Baking Soda for Health

cleaningWe bet you don’t know how versatile baking soda really is. Yes, it’s a necessary ingredient for baking cookies, can help whiten teeth, and can act as a refrigerator deodorizer. Yet there’s so many more amazing ways baking soda can be used. Britt Brandon, author of BAKING SODA FOR HEALTH, shares other creative baking soda life hacks.

#1 Relieves Insect Bites

If you’ve ever endured the painful intensity of a bug bite, then you can identify with the desperate quest for relief. Whether the itch is isolated to a single spot or causing your body to break out in hives, the physical symptoms resulting from a bug bite can be life-altering: disrupted sleep; nausea; and even inhibited mental focus, cognitive awareness, and memory. Many over-the-counter applications promise to provide relief from these “minor” irritations. In fact, it can seem easy to simply breeze through your favorite grocery store or drug store, purchase a tube or spray bottle of insect-bite reliever, and handle the situation without another thought. However, the application of these seemingly innocent medications can actually cause more harm than good. With dangerous chemical ingredients and preservatives that can cause serious irritation, over-the-counter insect-bite relievers should be considered possible irritants rather than products to soothe an irritated, infected, or open wound.

Baking soda, on the other hand, can be utilized in a number of applications that prevent irritation, soothe itchiness, reduce inflammation, and relieve redness. Ingesting 1 teaspoon of baking soda dissolved in an 8-ounce glass of water will help soothe bites by promoting healing processes from the inside out. In addition, a one-to-one ratio of baking soda and aloe vera can be soaked into a compress and applied to the site of the bite directly several times a day for immediate relief, protection, and promotion of healing.

#2: Removes Bitterness from Tea

There’s something so right about a soothing hot cup of tea. With a wide variety of organic, preservative-free, additive-free, non-GMO options gracing the aisles of every grocery store, consumers have lots of convenient and healthy options to choose from. Whether your preference is green, black, white, or chamomile, a cup of tea can be the perfect prescription to calm the nerves, invigorate the system, or bring clarity to an unfocused mind. While tea can be a comforting accompaniment to your day, bitterness can ruin the experience in just a sip. The bad experience of bitter tea can be banned quickly and naturally with the use of baking soda.

In an effort to combat the sour tea taste that can be inherently present in many varieties of store-bought teas, consumers have used sugars, creams, and dairy-free flavorings to mask the bitterness. However, the addition of these products inadvertently transforms their healthy tea into an unhealthy cup of sugar, preservatives, and additives that can contribute serious harm to their overall health.

With a simple sprinkling of 1 ⁄4 teaspoon of baking soda in a 6-ounce cup of tea, the bitterness of the tea can be resolved naturally. Immediately combatting the acidic tannins that give teas their bitter tastes, baking soda provides a natural pH-balancing solution that helps eliminate bitterness while maintaining the taste of the tea. The baking soda also helps boost the tea’s natural health benefits by promoting optimal functioning of the circulatory, nervous, and digestive systems. So the next time you try your cup of tea and are disappointed by its bitter taste, don’t let it ruin your mood. You can simply reach for your box of baking soda and sprinkle the health-transforming, bitterness-alleviating remedy right into your cup.

#3: Soothes Razor Burn

With every swipe of a razor, the possibility of developing “razor burn” is ever-present. The beauty industry preys on men and women who fear the unsightly and uncomfortable conditions that result from worn razors. Whether due to sensitive skin, persistent irritation, or a chronic skin condition that leaves the skin especially vulnerable, razor burn can strike anyone. While precautionary measures such as using fresh razors, using shaving cream while shaving, and shaving in specific directions on different parts of the body can all help reduce the incidence of razor burn, the condition can still occur. In an attempt to minimize razor burn, many commercial products promise that their formulas can be used before, during, or after shaving to prevent razor burns from occurring. Sadly, these products rarely help. Adding to the already uncomfortable skin irritation, the chemicals and additives in many of the creams, soaks, and lotions can further irritate inflamed areas. By blocking the hair follicles that become irritated during shaving, many products’ residues can contribute to ingrown hairs that can be unsightly, uncomfortable, and even hazardous to your overall health.

Luckily, baking soda can be used in two separate methods for the prevention and treatment of razor burn. With a simple concoction created by combining 1 part baking soda and 1 part coconut oil, a soothing lather can be applied to the skin prior to shaving. Helping to reduce skin irritation and soothe areas of possible inflammation, a similar combination consisting of 1 part baking soda and 1 part aloe vera can be applied to skin post-shave. With the natural calming effects that are provided by the pH-balancing, alkalizing baking soda, these simple combinations of all-natural ingredients not only help maintain the suppleness of the skin, but also provide relief from the pain, itchiness, and redness that can occur from razor burn.

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These are only a few of the ways baking soda can make your life easier—find all 100 in BAKING SODA FOR HEALTH!

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Excerpted from Baking Soda for Health by Britt Brandon. Copyright © 2018 by Simon & Schuster, Inc. Used by permission of the publisher. All rights reserved.

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