Some of you may have seen the email/blog by Becky Ramsey from Indiana on Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2) and all its amazing capabilities. After doing some research, having used H2O2 myself, and talking with other Natural Health Professionals I know – I have put some information together that I hope will help you use H2O2 effectively.
First, you will need to purchase the right kind of peroxide. There are two kinds that you can purchase.
Three percent (3%) peroxide you can find in just about any grocery or drug store. It is typically very inexpensive, under $1.00. It breaks down quickly when exposed to light, so it generally comes in brown bottles that filter out the sun’s rays. This one bottle can be used for any of the following purposes very effectively:
Mouthwash – using it as a mouthwash helps the teeth become whiter, and the breath stays fresh. Hydrogen Peroxide acts like bleach, so it will bleach your teeth. DO NOT SWALLOW! Some health food stores sell Hydrogen Peroxide mouthwash and toothpaste.
Clean your Toothbrush – let your toothbrushes soak in a fresh source of Peroxide to keep them free of germs. Leaving it on the counter where light can get to it deactivates it, so either add fresh H2O2 or spray on the toothbrush daily to kill germs. We have a small jar that we put H2O2 in and let our brushes sit overnight to clean.
Clean your home – clean your counters and tabletops with peroxide to kill germs and leave a fresh smell. Put a little on your dishrag when you wipe, or spray it on the counters. I put it in plastic spray bottles and use it to clean my whole house. Remember, it has bleaching properties, so test the item first in an unseen place and use common sense. Some people use it on carpet to get out stains.
Cutting boards – after rinsing off your wooden cutting board, spray peroxide on it to kill salmonella and other bacteria.
Infections – soak any infection or cut in 3% peroxide for five to ten minutes several times a day. It’s not good to use the long term after the infection has healed. It’s more effective in disinfecting non-living surfaces where it will not be neutralized and can work to get rid of anaerobic bacteria.
Bathroom cleaner: Fill a spray bottle with a 50/50 mixture of peroxide and water and keep it in every bathroom to disinfect without harming your septic system like bleach or most other disinfectants will. I pour a cup of peroxide in my toilet before I go to bed, use a brush to swish it around, then flush in the morning. It does an amazing job on cleaning toilets.
Nasal Wash – tilt your head back and spray into nostrils with your 50/50 mixture whenever you have a cold or plugged sinuses. It will bubble (and there might be a bite) and help to kill bacteria. Hold for a few minutes, then blow your nose into a tissue.
Toothache – if you have a toothache and cannot get to a dentist right away, put a capful of 3% peroxide into your mouth and hold it for ten minutes several times a day. Spit out and rinse. (Also check out other articles on Oil Pulling and Healthy Teeth)
Lighten your hair or facial hair -spray the 50/50 solution on your wet hair after a shower and comb it through. You will not have the peroxide burnt blonde hair like the hair dye packages, but more natural highlights if your hair is a light brown or dirty blonde. It also lightens gradually, so it’s not as drastic a change.
Laundry – You can also add a cup of peroxide instead of bleach to a load of whites in your laundry to whiten them. If there is blood on clothing, pour directly on the soiled spot. Let it sit for a minute, then rub it and rinse with cold water. Repeat if necessary. Nature’s Fresh also works well to get blood out of clothes. Read about that here.
Clean your Veggies – use as a vegetable wash or soak to kill bacteria. There are several credible references about the use of hydrogen peroxide on fruits or vegetables. Research published by the Journal of Food and Science in 2003 showed effective results of using hydrogen peroxide to decontaminate apples and melons infected with strains of E.coli. (Resource – www.truthorfiction.com)
The other kind of Hydrogen Peroxide is the Food Grade 35%. This is typically available in health food stores or farm supply stores sold as a disinfectant. It will work similarly to 3%, but it is MUCH stronger. So, if you purchase the 35%, you can dilute it to make 3% or use it full strength.
To dilute it to make a 3% solution, mix 1 ounce 35% food grade hydrogen peroxide with 11 ounces of water. Distilled water is best when feasible, especially if the solution can be stored for any length of time. USE RUBBER GLOVES AND GOGGLES as this stuff will tear off your skin! If you accidentally splash a bit on your skin, rinse with water immediately. Purchase a glass funnel, and if you can get a glass bottle that’s dark, that’s best.
BE CAREFUL!!! – If you have ever used hydrogen peroxide before, you have seen the little bubbles it makes. H2O2 bonds are broken down to produce H2O (water) and H (gas) by the enzyme catalase, which is present in human cells as well as many bacteria (aerobic and anaerobic) that are naturally present in the body. Immediately upon putting it on a surface like the skin, H2O2 will be broken down by catalase into water and O2. This is why it bubbles.
Some people take Hydrogen Peroxide internally. If you choose to do this, you’re left with by-products of water, and O2, which is not good. O2 is a free radical that your body will need to neutralize. So before you do this, it might be wise to check with your health professional to make sure this is the best thing for you. Personally, I never have and do not plan on taking it; I’m just sticking with herbs when I need help internally. But I do use H2O2 extensively in my home to clean.
I hope you find Hydrogen Peroxide useful for some of the above issues in your home.
Happy Natural Cleaning!