Friday, August 12, 2011

The Dirt On "Clean"

Over the past couple of decades we have been told things are good for us only to find down the road things things have been turned upside down and we're told to use caution.

Now I'm as clean as the next guy. I bathe regularly and wash dishes religiously. Every now and then I'll binge out and dust, vacuum and wash the floors. But some people go absolutely nuts about cleanliness.

Here are four instances where keeping clean may not be as beneficial as we have been lead to believe:

1) Hands up if you're sanitized. A number of issues have surfaced lately regarding the use of hand sanitizers. While still good, the CMAJ reports recently that they are no substitute for good old soap and water in preventing infection spreading and may, in some cases, actually increase the risk for outbreaks of highly contagious viruses in health care settings. 

2) Inside-out cleanliness. CNN reports, to my relief, that colon cleansing, promoted as a natural way to improve your heath and cleanse the soul, can actually cause dangerous side effects and "tout benefits that don't exist." I'll leave that one there...

3) A hiccup regarding household cleansers. The use of cleaning agents that kill all bacteria on surfaces on your home is now said to aid in the development of super resistant strains of evil bacteria. Besides, being exposed to bacteria helps us keep our immune systems up to par. But if you should feel the urge to kill germs, I stumbled across this post that advocates the use of vodka, not rubbing alcohol, to clean your house. Rubbing alcohol is isopropyl alcohol, which is toxic when absorbed. Vodka is ethyl alcohol, which is safe for human consumption should your child put a toy you cleaned with it in their mouth.

4) No more lilac-scented living room. You know those plug in air fresheners and shake on carpet deodorizers? Ah, to live in a garden of delightful scents. It seems they're said to constantly release toxic chemicals into your home. A small spritz in your bathroom is evidently still okay because you're not subjected to it constantly.

It's hard to know who to believe anymore. But I know one thing. Baking lasagna is not toxic. I'll continue to use my world famous recipe to give my home an appetizing scent.

Have a great day!


  1. Mmmmmm Mmmmm Mmmmmm. The smell of baking lasagna. Or, as the too-ripe bananas come out of the freezer, baking muffins.

    We don't have carpets in our house, so no spreading toxic powders everywhere for us.

    My daughter, when she was 3 or 4, once dropped her popcorn on the floor. She proceeded to very delicately pick up each piece between thumb and index, pop it into her mouth, and cleaned up her mess. A guest was aghast. Vitamin Z, I say.

    (And yes, I wash my hardwood floors - not with vodka, but with a touch of vinegar.)

  2. This just in.