Monday, October 25, 2010

Antibacterial Soap--Friend or Foe?

Antibacterial Soap--it's been all the rage for the past couple years. Many think it's their friend, but is it? You can't go anywhere without seeing it. It's in restrooms, grocery stores (to use on shopping carts), libraries, school classrooms, purses, backpacks, and so many more places.

Remember the good ol' days when you washed your hands with a plain old bar of soap? It didn't even have to smell pretty, but it smelled clean. And it worked if you actually used it.

So why does everyone insist on using antibacterial products instead of the old bar of soap? Marketing, of course. What could be more convenient? And that bacteria is just horrible, we must eradicate it.


Here's some facts about bacteria:
Bacteria are vital in recycling nutrients, with many steps in nutrient cycles depending on these organisms, such as the fixation of nitrogen from the atmosphere and putrefaction.

There are approximately 10 times as many bacterial cells in the human body as there are human cells.

There are good kinds of bacteria (like lactic acid bacteria, or Lactobacillus), which for thousands of years have been used in the preparation of fermented foods like cheese, yogurt, wine, vinegar, pickles, and more.

Did you know that the bacteria in your septic system help to break down waste and keep the system clean?

Other bacteria, such as Staphylococcus or Streptococcus, can cause all kinds of issues with humans, from skin infections to pneumonia, even death. However, these bacteria are part of our normal human flora and usually exist on our skin or in our noses without causing any disease.

Of course, there are other, really nasty bacteria, and we don't even want to discuss those here.

But think about this: When you use the antibacterial products, cleaning products, bleach, etc. to kill and eliminate bacteria, those products do not selectively attack the bad bacteria. They go for ALL bacteria--even the ones we need.

When you flush bleach down the toilet or constantly wash your hands with antibacterial soap, you are actually hurting yourself, your septic system, your environment! Think about it--because most people don't.

Try an old-fashioned bar of soap. Wash your hands appropriately (silently sing the ABCs or Twinkle Twinkle Little Star). Don't use the antibacterial soap or wipes. Make your own, or try a bar of soap in a small, reusable container (let it dry out between uses).

We're concerned for our environment. Here at Heaven and Earth Essentials, we're in the process of making batches of old-fashioned soap--and you know what? I've never felt better about making and using this type of soap!

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