It’s most important role by far is what benefits it offers your body. And there is certainly no shortage of those.
How Does One Define It?
Baking soda’s official name is sodium bicarbonate. This is also the compound you can thank for helping your dough rise. It is also useful in other cooking aspects such as helping enrich certain types of food.
This technique of baking bread with the help of baking soda is a centuries old tradition.
Baking soda also goes by another name: nahcolite. This is a derivative of a mineral called natron.
Did you know that the Ancient Egyptians used natron to clean their homes? Even they were aware of baking soda’s usefulness!
Flash forward from ancient times to the year 1846, when John Dwight and Dr. Austin Church created the baking soda we all know and use to this very day!
Still, it wasn’t until the 20th century (1920 to be more precise) that baking soda began being used for medicinal purposes. We shall be concentrating on those this time around. Here are 11 uses of baking soda for naturally improving your health.
The best part about it is that it is infinitely cheaper than many other medicines, natural or otherwise, and has even been used in cosmetics! Here are the many uses for it, other than treating accidents and injuries. We shall now start the countdown.
1. A Natural Deodorant
The deodorants you are used to buying in supermarkets and stores contain unhealthy chemicals such as aluminum and parabens. You can easily avoid such heavy compounds by opting for baking soda instead.
Nothing is simpler than simply brushing baking soda on your feet, underarms or any other problematic area you might have for getting rid of the sweat or any unpleasant smell.
2. Poison Ivy and Insect Bites
A simple mixture of baking soda and some water makes an excellent paste which efficiently reduces any itching caused by insect bites. All you have to do is apply this homemade paste on the affected area.
Other than itches, it is also useful for soothing and naturally treating rashes caused by poison ivy – or other similar poisonous plants.
3. Ulcer Pain, Heartburn and Indigestion
Baking soda is #1 when it comes to treating heartburn, stomach acid, ulcer pain and indigestion.
What you need to do is mix half a teaspoon of baking soda in ½ glass of water. Drink this healthy mixture every 2 hours, but in case you are over 60, this may be too large of a dose for you, so tone it down a bit.
4. Exfoliator and Foot Soak
We already mentioned you should apply some baking soda on your feet to get rid of any foul smells, but that is not the only use they can benefit from. Just mix 3 tablespoons of baking soda with some warm water and soak your feet in the solution.
Another method you can try that is just as effective is making a paste and rubbing it directly on your feet. Whichever works best for you. Using the second one as a foot scrub gives you all the benefits without any side effects, so don’t hesitate to give it a shot.
It cleanses your skin like a charm.
5. Relaxing Soak
While we’re on the subject of soaking, why not soak the entire body? In fact, mixing apple cider vinegar with baking soda is an excellent method for achieving a natural bath ‘salt’ which cleans, relieves and nourishes your skin!
Anyone can benefit from this, especially those who suffer from skin allergies and have problems with hives.
And surprise-surprise, you can leave this solution for a little bit in the tub even after you’ve gotten out. That way, you’re effectively cleaning your tub as well!
6. Cleansing Your Hands
It can even be a DIY natural soap. Just combine one part of water with three parts baking soda and then use it to clean your hands of any dirt or unwanted odors.
7. Remove Splinters
That’s right. This is something baking soda is also good for. What you need to do is add 1 tablespoon of baking soda in a small glass filled with water. Use this mixture on the affected area twice a day. It will only take a few days for the splinters to naturally come off.
You won’t have to be bothered with doing painful ‘home surgery’ (which may only lead to further complications) ever again!
8. Sunburn Treatment
And we all know how painful that can be. Here’s a nice homemade solution for it. Add half a cup of baking soda in lukewarm water. Then pour this mixture into a bath tub and lie in the tub to soothe any heavy-degree sunburns.
Or, if soaking is not your thing for some reason, you can always use this other method. Dip a cloth or towel in the same mix and directly apply it to the affected area.
9. Boost Your Sports Performance
Did you know that a great number of professional athletes use baking soda capsules to improve their performances? They are a well-known energy booster, after all. Still, if you wish to try this, better do some proper research first.
10. Gum and Tooth Paste
You may even be familiar with the teeth-cleaning method using baking soda thanks to all the benefits it has. However, having said that, you should be extremely mindful no to overuse baking soda as there is indeed too much of a good thing.
Baking soda, although extremely healthy, is a rather abrasive substance which, if taken in large quantities and too often, can damage your dental health instead of improving it.
But don’t get scared, all you need to be is cautious, and it’s best not to brush your teeth with it more than once on a weekly basis. It’s excellent for removing plaque and getting rid of all kinds of unhealthy oral bacteria, much more than any other toothpaste bought in any supermarket.
All you do is mix one part salt with 6 parts baking soda. Place them in a blender for 30 seconds and then fill a tube with them. You don’t even need a brush, simply use a (well-cleaned) index finger to massage your gums with them for a short while.
Then wait about 15 minutes for the paste to do its magic before thoroughly rinsing your mouth. Once again, just make sure not to overdo it!
11. Whitens Your Teeth Too
Yup. So, other than the benefits we mentioned above it also gives your pearly whites an even ‘pearlier’ look. What you need for this is to combine a ripe strawberry with half a teaspoon of baking soda.
Apply directly on your teeth and let it sit for about 5 minutes before once again rinsing thoroughly. In order to prevent hurting the enamel of your teeth, once a week is more than enough.
But Wait, There’s More!
Here’s a fun fact which you may or may not have known: the baking soda has been used to clean the Statue of Liberty back during its restoration in 1986! So surely it is good enough for use in your kitchen, for all kinds of dirty surfaces!
A mixture of baking soda and apple cider vinegar is the ideal chemical-free cleaning agent for your bathroom as well! Then there’s cleaning the grill, or any toys if you have young children. You can even sprinkle it on carpets before doing your regular vacuuming for better results.
Just make sure to let it sit for about 15 minutes. Even your silverware and cutlery can regain their natural shine and sparkle by using baking soda to clean them. The possibilities are nearly endless.
So make your life a little bit (or a whole lot!) easier by always keeping some baking soda around. After all, you never know when you’re going to need some – whether for your home or yourself!