ORIGINAL BLUE DAWN

dawn liquid soadIT’S NOT JUST FOR DISHES ANYMOREWild Life
Ever wonder why Dawn Dishwashing Liquid is the wildlife cleaner of choice after an oil spill? According to the International Bird Rescue Research Center, Dawn effectively removes grease but does not cause harm to the skin of the birds. It’s also biodegradable and contains no phosphates.

BUBBLES
According to Bubbles.org, Dawn dishwashing liquid makes great homemade bubbles. Here is the Giant Bubble Recipe used in bubble makers at many children’s museums: 1/2 cup Ultra Dawn 1/2 gallon warm water 1 tablespoon glycerin (available at any drug store) OR White Karo syrup works too! Stir gently. Skim the foam off the top of the solution (too much foam breaks down the bubbles). Dip bubble wand and get ready for some good, clean fun!

GREASY HAIR PROBLEMS
Kids get into the darnedest things! Like Vaseline and baby oil rubbed into their hair! Dawn is mild enough to use on their hair and strong enough to remove the most stubborn grease.

HAIR PRODUCT BUILDUP
Once a month use original Dawn as you would shampoo. It will remove excess oil from your hair and scalp and strip away any build-up of styling products without any damage. Perform this once a month and you won’t have to buy expensive salon products that do the same thing.

MANICURE SECRET
Soak fingers in full-strength blue Dawn. It makes the cuticles soft and easy to work with. And it removes the natural oil from the fingernails, which allows the polish to adhere very well.

REPEL HOUSEPLANT INSECTS
A safe, effective way to repel insects from your houseplants, including aphids, spider mites and mealy bugs. Put a drop of Dawn Dishwashing Liquid in a spray bottle, fill the rest of the bottle with water, shake well, and mist your household plants with the soapy water.

CLEAN YOUR WINDOWS
Try this recipe from Merry Maids: mix 3 drops Dawn in 1 gallon water and fill a spray bottle with the solution. Spritz and wipe as you would with any window cleaner.

PETS AND PESTS
Use it to bathe the dogs. It kills fleas on contact and is much cheaper than expensive dogshampoos.

CLEAN AUTOMOTIVE TOOLS
After you have finished your automotive repair project, soak your dirty tools in Dawn before you put them away to remove all the oil and grime. Dawn also helps prevent rust from forming on the tools.

ICE PACK
Partially fill a strong zip-type sandwich bag with Dawn dishwashing liquid, close and freeze. The liquid soap stays cold much longer and it can be re-frozen many times. It will conform to the place you need an ice pack.

TUB AND SHOWER CLEANER
Take a spray bottle and fill it halfway with white vinegar. Heat in the microwave. Fill the rest of the way with blue Dawn. Put lid on and shake to mix well. Spray on your tub and shower walls. Allow to sit for a few minutes and rinse away. It will totally melt all the gunk, slime, sludge and other stuff that builds up including a bathtub ring.

REPEL ANTS
Spray counter-tops, cupboards and any other area where you see ants with a solution of Dawn and water. Wipe dry. The slight residue of Dawn that remains will not be a problem at all for kids or pets, but ants hate it. Should you see a trail of ants, go ahead and hit them with the Dawn spray.

STRIPPING CLOTH DIAPERS
Add a squirt or two of original Dawn dish soap to your washer and run a hot wash, then rinse until there are no more bubbles. Dawn is a degreasing agent and helps stripping by removing oily residue. Be sure to rinse, rinse, rinse until the water runs clear.

UNCLOGGING TOILETS
A cup of Dawn detergent poured into a clogged toilet allowed to sit for 15 minutes and then followed with a bucket of hot water poured from waist height will clear out the toilet.

POISON IVY
Poison ivy spreads through the spread of the oil within the blisters. Washing the affected area with Dawn, especially on children who keep scratching the blister’s open, helps dry up the fluid, AND keep it from spreading.

DRIVEWAY CLEANER

If you have gasoline or motor oil stains on your driveway, you can use the kitty litter method to clean up the excess oil and then use a scrub broom and a solution of biodegradable Dawn dishwashing detergent and warm water to safely and effectively remove excess motor oil from the pavement.

OILY SKIN
Dawn makes a great facial cleanser for oily skin. A drop or two combined with warm water will do the trick.

PAINT OR GREASE REMOVER FOR HANDS
Dawn combined with corn oil makes for the perfect paint or grease remover. Simply combine a little bit of both in your hands then rub it over affected areas. The corn oil and the dishwashing liquid both help to dissolve the grease and paint – yet leave skin soft, unlike harsher paint removers.

CLEANING THE KIDDIE POOL
Plastic wading pools can get very gunky, very fast. Dump the water, then scrub the pool with Dawn and a sponge. More potent cleaners like bleach will weaken and dry out the plastic in the sun.

MULTIPURPOSE CLEANER
Merry Maids recommends using a drop of Dawn in water to clean ceramic tile and no-wax/linoleum floors. You can also use the spray on:
• Bathroom and kitchen counters and sinks.
• Woodwork, e.g., baseboards, shelves, and wainscoting. (Dry as you go–wood doesn’t like prolonged contact with water.)
• Tubs and toilet seats.

LAUNDRY PRE-TREATER FOR OILY STAINS
For oil-based stains such as lipstick, grease, butter, motor oil, cooking oil, and some pen inks, simply apply some Dawn dishwashing liquid directly to the stain and scrub with a small brush or toothbrush until the oil is removed, and then launder as usual.

NON-TOXIC LUBRICANT
Sliding glass doors, door knobs, hinges etc. It lasts much longer than any aerosol type spray that I have tried. And Its non-toxic! It does a great job of cleaning the parts that its lubricating as well!

SIDEWALK DE-ICER
For icy steps and sidewalks in freezing temperatures, mix 1 teaspoon of Dawn dishwashing liquid, 1 tablespoon of rubbing alcohol, and 1/2 gallon hot/warm water and pour over walkways. They won’t refreeze. No more salt eating at the concrete in your sidewalks

POOL CLEANING
Squirt Dawn down the middle of the pool and all of the dirt, suntan lotion, etc. will move to the edges of the pool for easy clean up! AND it makes the pools sparkle.

EYEGLASS DEFOGGER
Simply rub a small drop of Dawn on eyeglass lenses, and wipe clean. It will leave a very thin film that will prevent them from fogging up.

SHOWER FLOORS
Cover greasy footprints on shower floors with a coating of Dawn; let sit overnight. Scrub away the gunk in the morning with a stiff brush.

APHID CONTROL ON FRUIT TREES
Mix two tablespoons Dawn to a gallon of water and put in your sprayer. Try to get spray both sides of the leaves, branches and the tree trunks. Let sit for about 15 minutes and then rinse the trees THOROUGHLY!

AND FINALLY……..
Here’s a brilliant idea! Need a hostess gift when visiting friends and family this summer? Print off this post and include it with a bottle of Blue Dawn! Talk about USEFUL !
[contact-form][contact-field label=’Name’ type=’name’ required=’1’/][contact-field label=’Email’ type=’email’ required=’1’/][contact-field label=’Website’ type=’url’/][contact-field label=’Comment’ type=’textarea’ required=’1’/][/contact-form]

Bounce

1. All this time you have just been putting Bounce in the dryer! It will chase ants away when you lay a sheet near them. It also repels mice.

2. Spread sheets around foundation areas, or in trailers, or cars that are sitting and it keeps mice from entering your vehicle.

3. It takes the odor out of books and photo albums that is not opened too often.

4. It repels mosquitoes. Tie a sheet of Bounce through a belt loop when outdoors during mosquito season.

5. Eliminate static electricity from your television (or computer) screen.

6. Since Bounce is designed to help eliminate static cling, wipe your television screen with a used sheet of Bounce to keep dust from resettling.

7. Dissolve soap scum from shower doors. Clean with a sheet of Bounce.

8. To freshen the air in your home – Place an individual sheet of Bounce in a drawer or hang in the closet.

9. Put Bounce sheet in vacuum cleaner.

10. Prevent thread from tangling. Run a threaded needle through a sheet of Bounce before beginning to sew.

11. Prevent musty suitcases. Place an individual sheet of Bounce inside empty luggage before storing.

12. To freshen the air in your car – Place a sheet of Bounce under the front seat.

13. Clean baked-on foods from a cooking pan. Put a sheet in a pan, fill with water, let sit overnight, and sponge clean. The anti-static agent apparently weakens the bond between the food and the pan.

14. Eliminate odors in wastebaskets. Place a sheet of Bounce at the bottom of the wastebasket.

15. Collect cat hair. Rubbing the area with a sheet of Bounce will magnetically attract all the loose hairs.

16. Eliminate static electricity from Venetian blinds. Wipe the blinds with a sheet of Bounce to prevent dust from resettling.

17. Wipe up sawdust from drilling or sand papering. A used sheet of Bounce will collect sawdust like a tack cloth.

18. Eliminate odors in dirty laundry. Place an individual sheet of Bounce at the bottom of a laundry bag or hamper.

19. Deodorize shoes or sneakers. Place a sheet of Bounce in your shoes or sneakers overnight.

20. Golfers put a Bounce sheet in their back pocket to keep the bees away.

21. Put a Bounce sheet in your sleeping bag and tent before folding and storing them. It will keep them smelling fresh. It will keep them smelling fresh.

Baking Soda

BAKING SODA

The Everyday Miracle

We call Baking Soda ‘The Everyday Miracle™’ because while it’s pure and simple, it’s also an astoundingly versatile, multi-purpose product.

What is Baking Soda?

Baking Soda, a sodium bicarbonate, is a naturally occurring substance that is present in all living things–it helps living things maintain the pH balance necessary for life. Baking Soda is made from soda ash, also known as sodium carbonate. The soda ash is obtained in one of two ways: it can be manufactured by passing carbon dioxide and ammonia through a concentrated solution of sodium
chloride (table salt). In our case, it is mined in the form of an ore called trona. Whether the soda ash is mined or processed, it is dissolved into a solution through which carbon dioxide is bubbled, and sodium bicarbonate precipitates out, forming ‘Pure, Safe and Natural” Baking Soda. It is pure enough (more than 99%) to be listed in the United States Pharmacopoeia (USP) since 1848.

How can Baking Soda do so much, so well?

It is the natural chemical and physical properties of Baking Soda that account for its many safe and effective uses. The five specific capabilities of Baking Soda are listed below.

Cleaning:

Baking Soda acts a cleaning agent because it is a mild alkali and can cause dirt and grease to dissolve easily in water for effective removal. When it is not fully dissolved, like when it is sprinkled on a damp sponge, Baking Soda is mildly abrasive and can lift dirt for easy removal as a gentle scouring
powder. Since it’s gentle, Baking Soda is safe and effective as a cleaner for glass, chrome, steel, enamel and plastic. Because Baking Soda is a pure, natural product that is also a food, it is non-toxic, unlike many other household cleaners. It is safe to use around children and pets and is ideal for cleaning food preparation surfaces. In your home use Baking Sodato clean sinks, tubs, tile, microwaves, plastic containers, even teeth without scratching. Industrially, Baking Soda is used to clean large machinery and commercial kitchen equipment.

Deodorizing:

Baking Soda’s deodorization power is a result of its ability to neutralize odors, rather than just covering up odors with perfumes. Most unpleasant odors come from either strong acids (like sour milk) or strong bases (spoiled fish). Baking Soda deodorizes by bringing both acidic and basic odor molecules into a neutral, more odor-free state. Use Baking Soda as a personal deodorant for underarms and feet, and as a household deodorant on carpets, upholstery and in the fridge and freezer. Baking Soda can also deodorize when it’s dissolved in water. So you can use Baking Soda as a mouthwash to neutralize garlic breath, as a diaper soak to neutralize that ‘ammonia’ smell (basic) and to deodorize plastic food containers that have absorbed that pickle or sauerkraut smell (acidic). Industrially, Baking Soda is used for odor control of sewage disposal plants and around barn and feedlots.

Leavening:

The most universal use of Baking Soda is for baking in which Baking Soda is used to promote leavening. Leavening increases the surface area of dough or batter by causing it to rise and become light and porous. The most common leavening agent is carbon dioxide, a gas that is produced by a chemical reaction with the use of Baking Soda, baking powder or yeast in a recipe. Baking Soda yields the carbon dioxide for leavening when it’s heated. When used as a leavening agent, Baking Soda also reacts with acidic ingredients to render a neutral, tasteless residue. Common examples of these acidic ingredients include sour milk, buttermilk, molasses, cream of tartar, lemon juice and the acidic substances in baking powder. Baking Soda has been used by generations of good cooks who have trusted our unwavering standard of purity since 1846…from our great-grandmothers, to our grandmothers and now to us.

Buffering:

Because of its chemical makeup, Baking Soda has unique capabilities as a buffer. Buffering is the maintenance of a stable pH balance, or acid-alkali balance. As a buffer, Baking Soda tends to cause acid solutions to become more basic and to cause basic solutions to become more acid, bringing both solutions to a stable pH around 8.1 (slightly basic) onthe pH scale. A buffer also resists pH change in a Page 2 solution, in this case maintaining a pH of 8.1. In this way Baking Soda can be used as an antacid in the
human digestive system, neutralizing acids from acid indigestion and heartburn and relieving the associated discomfort. (See directions for this use on the Baking Soda box.) When used as a paste on skin or in the bath, Baking Soda soothes the irritation of poison ivy, insect bites, sunburn, and prickly heat. The natural buffering of Baking Soda also means that it’s a safe and natural way to maintain appropriate pH levels in pools, where stable pH keeps water quality at its best, and in septic tanks, where stable pH provides a healthy environment for the beneficial bacteria that break down wastes. Industrially, Baking Soda is used in sewage treatment facilities for its ability to maintain favorable pH levels.

Fire Extinguishing:

Baking Soda is effective as a fire extinguisher for grease and electrical fires. When Baking Soda is heated it releases carbon dioxide (just as when dough rises) and produces water. Since carbon dioxide is heavier than air and does not support combustion like oxygen does, it smothers the fire while the water that is formed cools the fire to below the ignition temperature. Unlike any other household chemical, Baking Soda both cools and smothers a fire. Many homes have Baki ng Soda readily available as a first step in fighting kitchen, garageand car fires — then call the Fire Department. Many commercial fire extinguishers, including dry chemical and foam, contain Baking Soda.

Kitchen Cleaning Coffee and Tea Pots:

Remove those coffee and tea stains and eliminate bitter off-tastes by washing coffee maker parts, and coffee and tea pots in a solution of 1/4 cup Baking Soda in 1 quart of warm water. For stubborn stains, try soaking overnight in the Baking Soda solution and detergent. You can even remove the unsightly stains from your favorite cups and mugs, by sprinkling Baking Soda on a sponge and scrubbing the stains away!

Deodorizing Cutting Boards:

Your cutting board smells like the garlic you chopped up yesterday? Use Baking Soda to clean and deodorize your cutting boards because it is a food safe cleaner! Sprinkle Baking Soda on a damp sponge, scrub and rinse clean! Now you are all set to chop those onions!

Deodorizing Dishwashers:

Not ready to run the dishwasher, but can not stand the smell of the tuna you had for lunch? Sprinkle a handful of Baking Soda on the dishes or in the bottom of the dish-washer to absorb these odors, so you can wait until the washer is full! The Baking Soda will do double-duty: deodorizing before you run the dishwasher and then cleaning in the first wash cycle. With Baking Soda handling the first cycle, add your detergent only to the cup that closes, for use in the second cycle.

Sweeten Drains and Garbage Disposals:

To deodorize your drains and disposal, pour Baking Soda down the drain while running warm tap water. The Baking Soda will neutralize both acid and basic odors for a fresh drain. When you are replacing a box from the Fridge or Freezer, pour the contets of the old box down the drain to get extra mileage from the Baking Soda.

Extinguishing Fires:

Always keep Baking Soda on hand in the kitchen for an unexpected grease or electrical fire. Keep it away from the stove so you can reach it in case of a stovetop fire. Throw Baking Soda at the base of the flames as an initial step in controlling small kitchen or electrical fires. Call the Fire Department. To avoid reigniting, do not attempt to move the item until thoroughly cooled. To be sure, let the Fire Department handle this. (Do not use Baking Soda in deep fat fryers, as it may splatter.)
Deodorizing Fridges and Freezers:

Be sure to keep your both your Fridge and Freezer smelling fresh even with the fish and onions inside. Tear the front and back panels off of a Fridge-n-Freezer Flo-Thru Freshener™ Baking Soda box and place in the back of both the fridge and freezer, close to the air duct (usually located near the top shelf), to neutralize odors and prevent taste-transfer between foods. We recommend you change the boxes every 3 months…we’d be happy to remind you–just choose the Fridge/Freezer to learn more!

Fruit and Vegetable Scrub:

Baking Soda is the food safe way to clean dirt and residue off fresh fruit and vegetables. Just sprinkle on a damp sponge and scrub. Then rinse. Bon Appetite!

Deodorize Garbage Can:

Keep those garbage smells to a minimum by sprinkling Baking Soda in the garbage be-tween layers of garbage as they accumulate. Periodically wash out and deodorize gar-bage cans with a solution of 1 cup of Baking Soda per 1 gallon of water.

Food Safe/Surface Safe Cleaning:

Baking Soda is the ideal all-purpose cleaner for the kitchen. Who wants to use harsh chemicals on your counters, sinks, dish strainers, when you will be making dinner on those same surfaces?! Just sprinkle Baking Soda on a damp sponge or cloth and wipe clean, rinse thoroughly, then dry. Try it on counters, sinks, cutting boards, microwaves,
plastic containers, back splashes, oven tops, range hoods and more! Your kitchen will be fresh and clean.

Microwave Cleaning:

Use Baking Soda to clean and deodorize your microwave, without scratching. Use a
solution of 4 tablespoons of Baking Soda to 1 quart of water. Wipe down microwave and rinse with clear water. For cooked-on foods sprinkle Baking Soda directly on a damp sponge, scrub fod stains and rinse. Try this on your fridge, freezer, and other appliances, too. Not only does it clean, it also deodorizes!

Deodorizing Plastic Containers:

Keep your plastic food storage containers and thermos smelling fresh. Wash them with Baking Soda sprinkled on a damp sponge. For lingering odors, just soak items in a solution of 4 tablespoons Baking Soda solution in 1 quart warm water. You will never know what was stored in them before!

Polish Silver Flatware:

Baking Soda can shine all your silver in no time at all! Use a Baking Soda paste made with 3 parts Baking Soda to 1 part water. Rub onto the silver with a clean cloth or sponge. Rinse thoroughly and dry for shining sterling and silver-plate serving pieces!

Cleaning Pots & Pans:

No more heavy scrubbing pots and pans! Baking Soda penetrates and helps lift off baked-on, dried-on foods. Shake on a generous amount of baking soda, add hot water, and dish detergent, let sit for 15 minutes and wash as usual.

Deodorizing Recyclables:

Keep those recyclables smelling fresh until collection day. Sprinkle Baking Soda on top as you add to the container. Also, clean your recyclable container periodically by sprinkling Baking Soda on a damp sponge. Rinse and wipe clean. You can also wash the container with a solution of 1 cup of Baking Soda per 1 gallon of water. We are serious about caring for the environment, so we encourage you to recycle/reuse as much as possible. BAKING SODA is completely biodegradable and does not pollute ground water. We have also been using recycled paperboard for our packaging since 1907!

Removing Scuff Marks:

Get rid of those scuff marks on your no-wax floor. Just sprinkle Baking Soda on a damp sponge, rub clean and rinse. Baking Soda will remove the scuff mark, but will not scratch your floor!

Freshen Sponges:

Soak stale-smelling sponges in a strong Baking Soda solution to keep them fresh.

Handwashing Dishes:

Boost the performance of your hand dish washing liquid detergent. Add 2 heaping
tablespoons of Baking Soda to the dish water to help cut grease and food on dishes, pots and pans. For cooked-on foods, let them soak in the Baking Soda/detergent water first, then use dry Baking Soda on a damp sponge or cloth as a scratchless scouring powder! Baking Soda helps fight minor kitchen fires! Did you know that Baking Soda can help in the initial handling of minor grease or electrical kitchen fires? That’s be-cause when Baking Soda is heated, it gives off carbon dioxide, which helps to smother the flames of grease and electrical fires. For small cooking fires (frypans, broilers, ovens, grills), turn off the gas or electricity if you can safely do so.

Stand back and throw handfuls of Baking Soda at the base of the flame to help put the fire out–and call the Fire Department just to be safe! To avoid re-ignition, do not attempt to move the item until thoroughly cooled. To be sure, let the Fire Department handle this. (Don’t use Baking Soda in deep fat fryers; it may splatter.) For small electrical fires(small appliances, heaters, outlets), unplug appliances if you can safely do so. Stand back and toss handfuls of Baking Soda at the base of the flames to help put the fire out — and call the Fire Department to be sure the fire’s out! (Remember – don’t use water on electrical fires, as shock or electrocution could result!)

Make an Emergency Fire Pail using Baking Soda! Here’s a great Fire Safety Awareness project for kids that will help the whole family be prepared for small fires. Using Baking Soda and a coffee can, kids can make a Fire Pail to have on hand in the event of a kitchen fire. To make a Fire Pail, request a label with instructions by sending a self-addressed, stamped envelope to:
Fire Pail Brochures
PO Box 7468
Princeton, NJ 08543.

Bathroom Cleaning Bathroom Floors:

Baking Soda dissolves the dirt and grime from a bathroom tile or no-wax floor quickly and easily. Mix 1/2 cup Baking Soda in a bucket of warm water, mop and rinse clean for a sparkling floor.

 

The Four Horsemen of Aging: inflammation, oxidation, stress and sugar

We can’t prevent aging — but we can age optimally

Aging is actually the No. 1 risk factor for a lot of things you don’t want to have. And while we can’t prevent aging, we can do a lot to ensure that we age optimally. That means reducing the effects of what I call “the Four Horsemen of Aging”: four processes that systemically break down our bodies, age us from within, damage our organs and tissues (including our skin) and contribute to every degenerative disease known to humankind.

The Four Horsemen of Aging: inflammation, oxidation, stress and sugar

A full explanation of how these four processes contribute to the diseases and ailments of aging would take a book. (In fact, I wrote one: It’s called The Most Effective Ways to Live Longer.) But briefly, let me explain.

1. Oxidation is damage from free radicals that can impact your sex life, the appearance of your skin and the condition of your brain.
2. Inflammation is the starting point for heart disease and is a big factor in Alzheimer’s, dementia, obesity, diabetes and cancer.
3. Stress causes your body to release hormones (like cortisol) which, among other nasty things, can shrink the hippocampus, an important area of the brain involved in memory and thinking.
4. Sugar sends your “fat-storing” hormone (insulin) into overdrive and contributes to aging and disease in multiple ways.

Luckily, there are a number of steps we can take to reduce the damage.

6 Top anti-aging tips for women

Exercise every day
It makes you look better at the beach, prevents muscle “decay” (a condition called sarcopaenia), and improves mood. Even 30 to 45 minutes a day of brisk walking has been shown to grow new brain cells as well as to reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer, diabetes and depression.

Take these seven supplements

All supplements are not created equal. I’ve included name brands that I trust.

• Omega-3s are anti-inflammatory and benefit the heart and brain.
• Magnesium helps relax blood vessel walls.
• Vitamin D benefits everything you can think of.
• Resveratrol turns on longevity genes (Reserveage).
• Curcumin is anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer and an antioxidant (Terry Naturally).
• Cocoa flavanols help lower blood pressure (CocoaWell).
• CoQ10 is fuel for the heart.

Eat these four superfoods

Put nuts, beans, dark chocolate and berries on heavy rotation in your diet. These four foods provide a particularly impressive range of antiaging benefits.

Drink these three drinks

Water, green tea and pomegranate juice. One study showed that those drinking five or more glasses of water a day could help reduce the risk for heart disease by 53 percent, compared with those drinking two or less a day. Green tea is anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, an anti-oxidant and pro-weight loss! And researchers in Israel call pomegranate juice a “natural Viagra” — drink up!

Deal with your stress
Stress contributes to every disease, directly or indirectly. It shrinks the brain and increases the waistline. Deal with it — somehow. Meditation is the best, but even a few minutes of relaxed deep breathing several times a day will help.

Take this advice seriously and do all six of these anti-aging tips. If you do, chances are you’ll live longer (and better) than if you don’t.

Jonnie Bowden, PhD, CNS

 

Staying healthy over 50: Tips for boosting vitality

Don’t fall for the myth that growing older automatically means you’re not going to feel good anymore. It is true that aging involves physical changes, but it doesn’t have to mean discomfort and disability. While not all illness or pain is avoidable, many of the physical challenges associated with aging can be overcome or drastically mitigated by eating right, exercising, and taking care of yourself.
It’s never too late to start! No matter how old you are or how unhealthy you’ve been in the past, caring for your body has enormous benefits that will help you stay active, sharpen your memory, boost your immune system, manage health problems, and increase your energy. In fact, many older adults report feeling better than ever because they are making more of an effort to be healthy than they did when they were younger. Staying healthy over 50: Tips for eating well as you age.
As you age, your relationship to food may change along with your body. A decreased metabolism, changes in taste and smell, and slower digestion may affect your appetite, the foods you can eat, and how your body processes food. The key is to figure out how to adapt to your changing needs. Now, more than ever, healthy eating is important to maintain your energy and health.
• Load up on high-fiber fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Your whole digestive system does slow as you age, so fiber is very important. Consume fiber-rich foods such as whole grains, fruit, and vegetables. They will help you feel more energetic and give you fuel to keep going.
• Put effort into making your food look and taste good. Your taste buds may not be as strong and your appetite may not be the same, but your nutritional needs are just as important as ever. If you don’t enjoy eating like you used to, put a little more effort into your meals, including the way you flavor, prepare, and present your food.
• Watch out for dehydration. Because of physical changes, older adults are more prone to dehydration. So make sure you are drinking plenty of fluid, even if you don’t feel thirsty. If you’re not getting enough water, you’re not going to be as sharp and your energy will suffer.
• Make meals a social event. It’s more enjoyable to eat with others than alone. If you live alone, invite other people over. It’s a great way to stay in touch with friends and you can share cooking and cleanup duties.
Staying healthy over 50: Tips for exercising as you age
Many adults don’t exercise as they get older. However, exercise is vital for staying healthy throughout life. It helps you maintain your strength and agility, gives your mental health a boost, and can even help diminish chronic pain. Whether you are generally healthy or are coping with an ongoing injury, disability, or health problem, regular exercise will help you stay physically and mentally healthy and improve your confidence and outlook on life.
• Check with your doctor before starting any exercise program. Find out if any health conditions or medications you take affect what exercise you should choose.
• Find an activity you like and that motivates you to continue. You may want to exercise in a group, like in a sport or class, or prefer a more individual exercise like swimming.
• Start slow. If you are new to exercise, a few minutes a day puts you well on the way towards building a healthy habit. Slowly increase the time and intensity to avoid injury.
• Walking is a wonderful way to start exercising. Exercise doesn’t have to mean strenuous activity or time at the gym. In fact, walking is one of the best ways to stay fit. Best of all, it doesn’t require any equipment or experience and you can do it anywhere.
Staying healthy over 50: Tips for sleeping well as you age
Many adults complain of sleep problems as they age, including insomnia, daytime sleepiness, and frequent waking during the night. But getting older doesn’t automatically bring sleep problems. Poor sleep habits are often the main causes of low–quality sleep in adults over 50.
• Naturally boost your melatonin levels at night. Artificial lights at night can suppress your body’s production of melatonin, the hormone that makes you sleepy. Use low-wattage bulbs where safe to do so, and turn off the TV and computer at least one hour before bed.
• Make sure your bedroom is quiet, dark, and cool, and your bed is comfortable. Noise, light, and heat can interfere with sleep. Try using an eye mask to help block out light.
• Develop bedtime rituals. A soothing ritual, like taking a bath or playing music will help you wind down.
• Go to bed earlier. Adjust your bedtime to match when you feel tired, even if that’s earlier than it used to be.
Staying healthy over 50: Tips for keeping your mind sharp
There are many good reasons for keeping your brain as active as your body. Keeping your brain active and maintaining creativity actually may help to prevent cognitive decline and memory problems. The more you use and sharpen your brain, the more benefits you will get. This is especially true if your career no longer challenges you or if you’ve retired from work altogether.
• Try variations on what you know. For some people, it might be games. Other people may enjoy puzzles or trying out new cooking recipes. Find something that you enjoy and continue to try new variations and challenges. If you like crosswords, move to a more challenging crossword series or try your hand at a new word game. If you like to cook, try a completely different type of food, or try baking if you’ve mostly been cooking over the stove.
• Work something new in each day. You don’t have to work elaborate crosswords or puzzles to keep your memory sharp. Try to work in something new each day, whether it is taking a different route to work or the grocery store or brushing your teeth with a different hand.
• Take on a completely new subject. Taking on a new subject is a great way to continue to learn. Have you always wanted to learn a different language? Learn new computer skills? Learn to play golf? There are many inexpensive classes at community centers or community colleges that allow you to tackle new subjects. Volunteering is also a great way to learn about a new area. Taking classes and volunteering is a great way to boost social connections, which is another brain strengthener.

Benefits of Vinegar

The Healing History of Vinegar
Vinegar is a dilute solution of acetic acid that results from a two-step fermentation process. The first step is the fermentation of sugar into alcohol, usually by yeast. Any natural source of sugar can be used. For example, the sugar may be derived from the juice, or cider, of fruit (such as grapes, apples, raisins, or even coconuts); from a grain (such as barley or rice); from honey, molasses, or sugar cane; or even, in the case of certain distilled vinegars, from the cellulose in wood (such as beech). The word “vinegar” comes from the French word for “sour wine.”

What you have at the end of this first phase, then, is an alcohol-containing liquid, such as wine (from grapes), beer (from barley), hard cider (from apples), or another fermented liquid. (The alcoholic liquid used to create a vinegar is generally reflected in the vinegar’s name — for example, red wine vinegar, white wine vinegar, malt vinegar, or cider vinegar.)

In the second phase of the vinegar-production process, certain naturally occurring bacteria known as acetobacters combine the alcohol-containing liquid with oxygen to form the acetic-acid solution we call vinegar. Acetic acid is what gives vinegar its sour taste. Although time-consuming, this second phase of the process will happen without human intervention if the alcoholic liquid is exposed to oxygen long enough.

Thus, it is not surprising that the first vinegar was the result of an ancient accident. Once upon a time, a keg of wine (presumably a poorly sealed one that allowed oxygen in) was stored too long, and when the would-be drinkers opened it, they found a sour liquid instead of wine. The name “vinegar” is derived from the French words for “sour wine.”

Fortunately, our resourceful ancestors found ways to use the “bad” wine. They put it to work as a cure-all, a food preservative, and later, a flavor enhancer. It wasn’t long before they figured out how to make vinegar on purpose, and producing it became one of the world’s earliest commercial industries.

The use of vinegar as medicine probably started soon after it was discovered. Its healing virtues are extolled in records of the Babylonians, and the great Greek physician Hippocrates reportedly used it as an antibiotic. Ancient Greek doctors poured vinegar into wounds and over dressings as a disinfectant, and they gave concoctions of honey and vinegar to patients recovering from illness. In Asia, early samurai warriors believed vinegar to be a tonic that would increase their strength and vitality.

Vinegar continued to be used as a medicine in more recent times. During the Civil War and World War I, for example, military medics used vinegar to treat wounds. And folk traditions around the world still espoused vinegar for a wide variety of ailments. Natural-healing enthusiasts and vinegar fans continue to honor and use many of those folk remedies.

Early Wines and Vinegars

Scientists believe wine originated during the Neolithic period (approximately 8500 b.c. to 4000 b.c., when humans first began farming and crafting stone tools) in Egypt and the Middle East. Large pottery jugs dating back to 6000 b.c. that were unearthed in archeological digs possessed a strange yellow residue. Chemical analysis revealed the residue contained calcium tartrate, which is formed from tartaric acid, a substance that occurs naturally in large amounts only in grapes. So the traces strongly suggested the jugs were used to make or hold wine.

Considering the slow grape-pressing methods used at that time and the heat of the desert environment, grape juice would likely have fermented into wine quite quickly. Likewise, the wine would have turned to vinegar rapidly, if conditions were right.

So how did these ancient people — who had only recently (in evolutionary terms) begun planting their own food and fashioning tools — manage to understand and control fermentation enough to prevent all their wine from turning to vinegar before they could drink it? Based on evidence found in archeological excavations, scientists believe that the first winemakers used jars with clay stoppers that helped control the fermentation process.

A complete analysis of the residue left in those ancient wine jugs also showed the presence of terebinth tree resin, which acts as a natural preservative and therefore would have helped slow the transformation of wine into vinegar. In Neolithic times, terebinth trees grew in the same area as grapes, and their berries and resin were harvested at the same time of year. So it’s quite plausible that some of the berries or resins may have inadvertently become mixed with the grape harvest. Still unclear is whether the ancient winemakers ever made the connection between the resins and the delayed conversion of wine into vinegar and began purposely adding the tree berries to their wine.

Vinegar’s zesty taste offers some health benefits, but not all that some people claim. Go to the next page to learn about the nutritional value of vinegar.

Misconceptions About Vinegar’s Health Benefits
The folk- and natural-healing claims made for vinegar through the ages have been almost as plentiful and varied as those made for garlic. Even in the current era of high-tech medicine, some proponents of natural healing still encourage traditional uses of vinegar. They have also added certain newly recognized or newly defined (within the past hundred years or so, that is) medical conditions to the list of health concerns for which they recommend vinegar.

Other present-day vinegar fans view it as an overall health-boosting, disease-fighting tonic and recommend mixing a teaspoon or tablespoon of cider vinegar with a glass of water and drinking it each morning or before meals. (Apple cider vinegar is the traditional vinegar of choice for home or folk remedies, although some recent claims have been made for the benefits of wine vinegars, especially red wine vinegar. Unless otherwise specified, though, the vinegar we’ll be referring to is apple cider vinegar.)

Perhaps most amazingly, vinegar is heralded as a potential healer of many of today’s most common serious ailments. Devotees believe vinegar can help prevent or heal heart disease, diabetes, obesity, cancer, aging-related ailments, and a host of other conditions. They say it is full of vitamins, minerals, fiber, enzymes, and pectin and often attribute vinegar’s medicinal effects to the presence of these ingredients. Among the specific claims made for apple cider vinegar are that:
• It reduces blood cholesterol levels and heart-disease risk. Apple cider vinegar fans say it contains pectin, which attaches to cholesterol and carries it out of the body, thus decreasing the risk of heart disease. In addition, many vinegar proponents say it is high in potassium, and high-potassium foods play a role in reducing the risk of heart disease by helping to prevent or lower high blood pressure. Calcium is also an important nutrient for keeping blood pressure in check, and as you will learn shortly, vinegar is sometimes promoted as having a high calcium content. Many also claim vinegar helps the body absorb this essential mineral from other foods in the diet.
• It treats diabetes. Apple cider vinegar may help control blood sugar levels, which helps to ward off diabetes complications, such as nerve damage and blindness. It also might help prevent other serious health problems, such as heart disease, that often go hand-in-hand with diabetes.

• It fights obesity and aids in weight loss. Some marketers proclaim that apple cider vinegar is high in fiber and therefore aids in weight loss. (Fiber provides bulk but is indigestible by the body, so foods high in fiber provide a feeling of fullness for fewer calories.) A daily dose is also said to control or minimize the appetite. (Ironically, some folk traditions advise taking apple cider vinegar before a meal for the opposite effect–to stimulate the appetite in people who have lost interest in eating.)
• It prevents cancer and aging. Apple cider vinegar proponents declare it contains high levels of the antioxidant beta-carotene (a form of vitamin A) and therefore helps prevent cancer and the ill effects of aging. (Antioxidants help protect the body’s cells against damage from unstable molecules called free radicals; free-radical damage has been linked to various conditions, including coronary heart disease, cancer, and the aging process.)
• It prevents osteoporosis. Advocates say apple cider vinegar releases calcium and other minerals from the foods you eat so your body is better able to absorb and use them to strengthen bones. Vinegar allegedly allows the body to absorb one-third more calcium from green vegetables than it would without the aid of vinegar. Some fans also say apple cider vinegar is itself a great source of calcium.
Based on these claims, apple cider vinegar certainly seems to be a wonder food. And it’s understandably tempting to want to believe that some food or drug or substance will make diabetes, obesity, cancer, and osteoperosis go away with little or no discomfort, effort, or risk.

However, as a wise consumer, you know that when something sounds too good to be true, it almost certainly is. So when it comes to your health–especially when you’re dealing with such major medical conditions–it’s important to take a step back and look carefully at the evidence.

A Closer Look at the Claims

With such dramatic claims made for it, you would think that vinegar would be high on the lists of medical researchers searching for the next breakthrough. Yet in the past 20 years, there has been very little research about using vinegar for therapeutic health purposes.

Granted, a lack of supporting scientific research is a common problem among many natural and alternative therapies. But even the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), a division of the U.S. government’s National Institutes of Health that was created specifically to investigate natural or unconventional therapies that hold promise, has not published any studies about vinegar, despite the fact that there has been renewed interest in vinegar’s healing benefits recently.

So without solid scientific studies, can we judge whether vinegar provides the kinds of dramatic benefits that its promoters and fans attribute to it? Not conclusively. But we can look at the claims and compare them to the little scientific knowledge we do have about vinegar.

Those who have faith in apple cider vinegar as a wide-ranging cure say its healing properties come from an abundance of nutrients that remain after apples are fermented to make apple cider vinegar. They contend that vinegar is rich in minerals and vitamins, including calcium, potassium, and beta-carotene; complex carbohydrates and fiber, including the soluble fiber pectin; amino acids (the building blocks of protein); beneficial enzymes; and acetic acid (which gives vinegar its taste).

These substances do play many important roles in health and healing, and some are even considered essential nutrients for human health. The problem is that standard nutritional analysis of vinegar, including apple cider vinegar, has not shown it to be a good source of most of these substances.

One tablespoon of apple cider vinegar per day is the typical therapeutic dose recommended, so the nutrients found in this amount of the vinegar are shown in the second column of the table. Just to be sure that the small amount of vinegar in a tablespoon isn’t the sole explanation for the apparent lack of nutrients, the table also includes the nutritional analysis of a larger amount (half a cup) of vinegar. You’ll notice that even at that higher amount, vinegar does not appear to include significant amounts of most of the nutrients that are claimed to be the source of its medicinal value.

To put all this information into some context, the column at the far right in the table shows the daily amounts needed by a typical adult who consumes 2,000 calories per day. (Requirements haven’t been established for some of the other substances that are often cited as contributing to vinegar’s beneficial effects.)
One milligram of calcium in one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar does not come close to the 300 milligrams of calcium in eight ounces of milk, as some promoters of apple cider vinegar claim. In fact, it supplies only a tiny fraction of the 1,000 milligrams a typical adult needs in a day. Vinegar also contains little potassium.

In terms of pectin, the type of soluble fiber that is said to bind to cholesterol and help carry it out of the body, apple cider vinegar contains no measurable amounts of it or of any other type of fiber. So it would seem that pectin could not account for any cholesterol-binding activity that vinegar might be shown to have.

Do apple cider vinegar’s secrets lie in the vitamins it contains? No. According to the USDA, apple cider vinegar contains no vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin K, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, or folate.

What about some of the other health-boosting substances that are alleged to be in vinegar? According to detailed nutritional analyses, apple cider vinegar contains no significant amounts of amino acids. Nor does it contain ethyl alcohol, caffeine, theobromine, beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, beta-cryptoxanthin, lycopene, lutein, or zeaxanthin.

It might seem like apple cider vinegar doesn’t contain enough nutrition to be beneficial, but that is simply not the case. Go to the next page to find out how vinegar has been proven to benefit the digestive system.
How Vinegar Affects Digestion
So if vinegar doesn’t actually contain all the substances that are supposed to account for its medicinal benefits, does that mean it has no healing powers? Hardly. As mentioned, so little research has been done on vinegar that we can’t totally rule out many of the dramatic claims made for it. Although we know vinegar doesn’t contain loads of nutrients traditionally associated with good health, it may well contain yet-to-be-identified phytochemicals (beneficial compounds in plants) that would account for some of the healing benefits that vinegar fans swear by. Scientists continue to discover such beneficial substances in all kinds of foods.

But beyond that possibility, there appear to be more tangible and realistic–albeit less sensational–ways that vinegar can help the body heal. Rather than being the dramatic blockbuster cure that we are endlessly (and fruitlessly) searching for, vinegar seems quite capable of playing myriad supporting roles–as part of an overall lifestyle approach–that can indeed help us fight serious health conditions, such as osteoporosis, diabetes, and heart disease.

Increasing Calcium Absorption

If there is one thing vinegar fans, marketers, alternative therapists, and scientists alike can agree on, it’s that vinegar is high in acetic acid. And acetic acid, like other acids, can increase the body’s absorption of important minerals from the foods we eat. Therefore, including apple cider vinegar in meals or possibly even drinking a mild tonic of vinegar and water (up to a tablespoon in a glass of water) just before or with meals might improve your body’s ability to absorb the essential minerals locked in foods.
Vinegar may be especially useful to women, who generally have a hard time getting all the calcium their bodies need to keep bones strong and prevent the debilitating, bone-thinning disease osteoporosis. Although dietary calcium is most abundant in dairy products such as milk, many women (and men) suffer from a condition called lactose intolerance that makes it difficult or impossible for them to digest the sugar in milk. As a result, they may suffer uncomfortable gastrointestinal symptoms, such as cramping and diarrhea, when they consume dairy products. These women must often look elsewhere to fulfill their dietary calcium needs.

Dark, leafy greens are good sources of calcium, but some of these greens also contain compounds that inhibit calcium absorption. Fortunately for dairy-deprived women (and even those who do drink milk), a few splashes of vinegar or a tangy vinaigrette on their greens may very well allow them to absorb more valuable calcium. Don’t you wish all medications were so tasty?

Controlling Blood Sugar Levels

Vinegar has recently won attention for its potential to help people with type 2 diabetes get a better handle on their disease. Improved control could help them delay or prevent such complications as blindness, impotence, and a loss of feeling in the extremities that may necessitate amputation. Also, because people with diabetes are at increased risk for other serious health problems, such as heart disease, improved control of their diabetes could potentially help to ward off these associated conditions, as well.

With type 2 diabetes, the body’s cells become resistant to the action of the hormone insulin. The body normally releases insulin into the bloodstream in response to a meal. Insulin’s job is to help the body’s cells take in the glucose, or sugar, from the carbohydrates in food, so they can use it for energy. But when the body’s cells become insulin resistant, the sugar from food begins to build up in the blood, even while the cells themselves are starving for it. (High levels of insulin tend to build up in the blood, too, because the body releases more and more insulin to try to transport the large amounts of sugar out of the bloodstream and into the cells.)

Over time, high levels of blood sugar can damage nerves throughout the body and otherwise cause irreversible harm. So one major goal of diabetes treatment is to normalize blood sugar levels and keep them in a healthier range as much as possible. And that’s where vinegar appears to help.

It seems that vinegar may be able to inactivate some of the digestive enzymes that break the carbohydrates from food into sugar, thus slowing the absorption of sugar from a meal into the bloodstream. Slowing sugar absorption gives the insulin-resistant body more time to pull sugar out of the blood and thus helps prevent the blood sugar level from rising so high. Blunting the sudden jump in blood sugar that would usually occur after a meal also lessens the amount of insulin the body needs to release at one time to remove the sugar from the blood.

A study cited in 2004 in the American Diabetes Association’s publication Diabetes Care indicates that vinegar holds real promise for helping people with diabetes. In the study, 21 people with either type 2 diabetes or insulin resistance (a prediabetes condition) and eight control subjects were each given a solution containing five teaspoons of vinegar, five teaspoons of water, and one teaspoon of saccharin two minutes before ingesting a high-carbohydrate meal. The blood sugar and insulin levels of the participants were measured before the meal and 30 minutes and 60 minutes after the meal.

Vinegar increased overall insulin sensitivity 34 percent in the study participants who were insulin-resistant and 19 percent in those with type 2 diabetes. That means their bodies actually became more receptive to insulin, allowing the hormone to do its job of getting sugar out of the blood and into the cells. Both blood sugar and blood insulin levels were lower than normal in the insulin-resistant participants, which is more good news. Surprisingly, the control group (who had neither diabetes nor a prediabetic condition but were given the vinegar solution) also experienced a reduction in insulin levels in the blood. These findings are significant because, in addition to the nerve damage caused by perpetually elevated blood sugar levels, several chronic conditions, including heart disease, have been linked to excess insulin in the blood over prolonged periods of time.

More studies certainly need to be done to confirm the extent of vinegar’s benefits for type 2 diabetes patients and those at risk of developing this increasingly common disease. But for now, people with type 2 diabetes might be wise to talk with their doctors or dietitians about consuming more vinegar.

Replacing Unhealthy Fats and Sodium

As you’ll discover in chapter four, there are some delicious varieties of vinegar available. Each bestows a different taste or character to foods. The diversity and intensity of flavor are key to one important healing role that vinegar can play. Whether you are trying to protect yourself from cardiovascular diseases, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, or stroke, or you have been diagnosed with one or more of these conditions and have been advised to clean up your diet, vinegar should become a regular cooking and dining companion. That’s because a tasty vinegar can often be used in place of sodium and/or ingredients high in saturated or trans fats to add flavor and excitement to a variety of dishes.

Saturated and trans fats have been shown to have a detrimental effect on blood cholesterol levels, and experts recommend that people who have or are at risk of developing high blood pressure cut back on the amount of sodium they consume. So using vinegar as a simple, flavorful substitute for these less healthful ingredients as often as possible can help people manage blood cholesterol and blood pressure levels and, in turn, help ward off heart disease and stroke.

You’ll find detailed advice about including more vinegar in your diet in chapter four, and you’ll discover delicious, good-for-you recipes at the end of the book that put vinegar to use. But the following suggestions will give you some sense of how vinegar can help you create and enjoy a diet that may lower your blood cholesterol and blood pressure and decrease your risks of heart disease and stroke:
• Make a vinegar-based coleslaw rather than a creamy, mayonnaise-based one. Because mayonnaise is made up almost completely of unhealthy fats and cholesterol, this easy switch can dramatically reduce the cholesterol and fat in this popular side dish.
• Enjoy healthier fish and chips. Instead of dipping fish in tartar sauce and drenching fries in salt and ketchup, splash them with a little malt vinegar. (Also consider baking the fish and the potatoes instead of frying them.) Because it contains mayonnaise, tartar sauce is high in unhealthy fats and cholesterol.
• Use vinegar-based salad dressings instead of creamy,mayonnaise-based dressings. Choose or make a flavorful herb salad dressing that contains mostly water, vinegar, and just a touch of oil to help it adhere to your salad veggies.
• Opt for vinegar instead of mayonnaise or other common, bad-fat-laden sandwich spreads to add flavor and moisture to sandwiches.
• When making a dish that contains beans, add a little vinegar near the end of cooking–it will dramatically decrease the amount of salt you’ll need. It perks up the flavor of beans without raising your blood pressure.
• You can also use vinegar as a tangy marinade for tenderizing less-fatty cuts of meat. Choosing meat with less fat on the edges and less marbling within is one of the easiest ways to trim unhealthy fats from your diet. Unfortunately, meats that don’t have as much marbling tend to be a little tougher. So vinegar can do double duty by adding a dash of zing as it tenderizes.
Making a Healthy Diet Easier to Swallow

Some of our strongest natural weapons against cancer and aging are fruits and vegetables. The antioxidants and phytochemicals they contain seem to hold real promise in lowering our risk of many types of cancer. Their antioxidants also help to protect cells from the free-radical damage that is thought to underlie many of the changes we associate with aging. Protected cells don’t wear out and need replacing as often as cells that aren’t bathed in antioxidants. Scientists think this continual cell replacement may be at the root of aging.
• The U.S. government’s 2005 Dietary Guidelines recommend that the average person eat about two cups of fruit and two-and-a-half cups of vegetables every day. One way to add excitement and variety to all those vegetables is to use vinegar liberally as a seasoning.
• Rice vinegar and a little soy sauce give veggies an Asian flavor or can form the base of an Asian coleslaw.
• Red wine vinegar or white wine vinegar can turn boring vegetables into a quick-and-easy marinated-vegetable salad that’s ready to grab out of the refrigerator whenever hunger strikes. Just chop your favorite veggies, put them in a bowl with a marinade of vinegar, herbs, and a dash of olive oil, and let them sit for at least an hour. (You don’t need much oil to make the marinade stick to the veggies, so go light, and be sure you choose olive oil.)
• Toss chopped vegetables in a vinegar-and-olive-oil salad dressing before loading them on skewers and putting them on the backyard grill. The aroma and flavor will actually have your family asking for seconds — of vegetables!
• After steaming vegetables, drizzle a little of your favorite vinegar over them instead of adding butter or salt. They’ll taste so good, you may never get to the meat on your plate.
By enhancing the flavor of vegetables with vinegar, you and your family will be inclined to eat more of them. And that–many researchers and doctors would agree–will likely go a long way toward protecting your body’s cells from the damage that can lead to cancer and other problems of aging.

Removing Harmful Substances from Produce

Some people are concerned that eating large amounts of fruits and vegetables may lead to an unhealthy consumption of pesticide and other farm-chemical residues. Vinegar can lend a hand here, too. Washing produce in a mixture of water and vinegar appears to help remove certain pesticides, according to the small amount of research that has been published. Vinegar also appears to be helpful in getting rid of harmful bacteria on fruits and vegetables.

To help remove potentially harmful residues, mix a solution of 10 percent vinegar to 90 percent water (for example, mix one cup of white vinegar in nine cups of water). Then, place produce in the vinegar solution, let it soak briefly, and then swish it around in the solution. Finally, rinse the produce thoroughly.

Do not use this process on tender, fragile fruits, such as berries, that might be damaged in the process or soak up too much vinegar through their porous skins.

Some pesticide residues are trapped beneath the waxy coatings that are applied to certain vegetables to help them retain moisture. The vinegar solution probably won’t wash those pesticides away, so peeling lightly may be the next best option. Some research suggests that cooking further eliminates some pesticide residue.

Add Flavor, Not Calories

Vinegar contains very few calories–only 25 in half a cup! Compare that to the nearly 800 calories you get in half a cup of mayonnaise, and you have a real fat-fighting food. So if you’re looking to lose weight, using vinegar in place of mayonnaise whenever you can will help you make a serious dent in your calorie (and fat) intake.

Vinegar can also help you have your dessert and cut calories, too. Use a splash of balsamic vinegar to bring out the sweetness and flavor of strawberries without any added sugar. Try it on other fruits that you might sprinkle sugar on–you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the difference a bit of balsamic vinegar can make. And for a real unexpected treat on a hot summer evening, drizzle balsamic vinegar–instead of high-fat, sugary caramel or chocolate sauce–on a dish of reduced-fat vanilla ice cream. Can’t imagine that combination? Just try it.

The Sour That’s Really Sweet

Obviously, much more research needs to be done to investigate all of vinegar’s healing potential. But even with the evidence available, it’s clear that vinegar holds some healing powers. It is not a too-good-to-be-true miracle cure, but it can be used in a variety of ways to enhance your efforts to fight serious, chronic diseases (and as noted in the box on pages 75 and 76, it may lend a healing hand against some common, minor discomforts).

In that sense, vinegar is like many of the other lifestyle adjustments, drugs, and therapies used in our battles against common, chronic, and often life-threatening diseases: It is just one of a variety of important steps that can help us defend ourselves. But unlike many of the other elements that go into treating or preventing disease, vinegar is one you’ll certainly enjoy incorporating into your life.

Home Remedies

Bounce Fabric Softener
1. All this time you have just been putting Bounce in the dryer! It will chase ants away when you lay a sheet near them. It also repels mice.

2. Spread sheets around foundation areas, or in trailers, or cars that are sitting and it keeps mice from entering your vehicle.

3. It takes the odor out of books and photo albums that is not opened too often.

4. It repels mosquitoes. Tie a sheet of Bounce through a belt loop when outdoors during mosquito season.

5. Eliminate static electricity from your television (or computer) screen.

6. Since Bounce is designed to help eliminate static cling, wipe your television screen with a used sheet of Bounce to keep dust from resettling.

7. Dissolve soap scum from shower doors. Clean with a sheet of Bounce.

8. To freshen the air in your home – Place an individual sheet of Bounce in a drawer or hang in the closet.

9. Put Bounce sheet in vacuum cleaner.

10. Prevent thread from tangling. Run a threaded needle through a sheet of Bounce before beginning to sew.

11. Prevent musty suitcases. Place an individual sheet of Bounce inside empty luggage before storing.

12. To freshen the air in your car – Place a sheet of Bounce under the front seat.

13. Clean baked-on foods from a cooking pan. Put a sheet in a pan, fill with water, let sit overnight, and sponge clean. The anti-static agent apparently weakens the bond between the food and the pan.

14. Eliminate odors in wastebaskets. Place a sheet of Bounce at the bottom of the wastebasket.

15. Collect cat hair. Rubbing the area with a sheet of Bounce will magnetically attract all the loose hairs.

16. Eliminate static electricity from Venetian blinds. Wipe the blinds with a sheet of Bounce to prevent dust from resettling.

17. Wipe up sawdust from drilling or sand papering. A used sheet of Bounce will collect sawdust like a tack cloth.

18. Eliminate odors in dirty laundry. Place an individual sheet of Bounce at the bottom of a laundry bag or hamper.

19. Deodorize shoes or sneakers. Place a sheet of Bounce in your shoes or sneakers overnight.

20. Golfers put a Bounce sheet in their back pocket to keep the bees away.

21. Put a Bounce sheet in your sleeping bag and tent before folding and storing them. It will keep them smelling fresh.