UV - Nature's greatest antibacterial
Germs - nobody wants them, and we go to great lengths to destroy them. Did you know that your body actually needs some? It's not what the creators of antibacterial gels, hand-washes and sprays want you to think!
What if I told you the more chemicals, like antibacterials you use increases your chances of developing asthma, especially in children?
A recent study (Stein et al, 2016) suggests the use of antibacterials in our cleaning products and pesticides in our produce will increase the risk of our children developing asthma. This is because it interferes with our innate immune response. Basically, killing everything kills our ability for our natural immune response to work. Some ingredients like triclosan, ammonia, bleach and behentrimonium chloride can target the thyroid and reproductive areas and can cause eczema (EWG, 2016; ).
What often happens is we think GERMS =BLEACH.....WRONG! This includes those other products that are marketed as killing 99% germs.
Apart from being passionate about local, organic produce, I also am just as passionate about NOT using gels, sprays and wipes that are antibacterial. We actually have a natural microbiome on our skin that continually protects us. We ruin this when our hand are covered in these chemicals. Don't get me wrong, you still need to wash your hands, but just with a natural soap or wash (remember to check the label).
Top tips for getting rid of bacteria on your kitchen items without chemicals:
Wash and scrub under hot water and a little detergent - DON'T BLEACH THEM
Use a microfibre cloth to physically remove dirt from surfaces and when you wash dishes - rinse in warm water, then put it in the wash cycle.
When it's sunny, place your chopping boards and washed microfibre cloths in the sun
Stein, MM et al, 2016, Innate Immunity and Asthma Risk in Amish and Hutterite Farm Children, New England Journal of Medicine, vol. 375, no. 5.
EWG, 2016, EWG's guide to healthy cleaning,
Wei & Zhu, 2016, Para-Dichlorobenzene Exposure is Associated with thyroid Function in US Adolescents, Journal of Pediatirics, vol. 238, p. 328-43.