Discussion Forums - Going Green Going Green

Topic: Green Resources - Post Yours or Ask Questions

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Date Posted: 4/19/2012 2:21 PM ET
Member Since: 7/6/2008
Posts: 9,342
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No more Seventh Generation!!!!  They fired the founder because he wasn't profit oriented enough!  Ugh!

I've retried all the TP the coop (Frontier) has available.  I'm now using Earth Friendly 100% post consumer recycled TP.  I've looked into a bidet, but...  And we have reduced our TP usage, but using natural wipes when things are messy, as they seem more effective with less actual material. 

Switched to Ecover dishwashing liquid. 

But the ultimate goal is to eliminate all consumer products...

Date Posted: 4/19/2012 2:29 PM ET
Member Since: 7/6/2008
Posts: 9,342
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Did I ever tell you guys that we don't use toothpaste or shampoo?

We switched to toothsoap about 4 years ago, maybe 5.  Though I'd also like to try the miswak brushes soon.  It takes about 6 months to get used to brushing your teeth with soap (don't use regular grocery store soaps, as they have nasty things in them!)...especially the soap taste, but eventually you don't notice anymore...and teeth/mouth are so much cleaner/healthier...and my gums don't bleed...and I never get tartar buildup anymore!  I went to the dentist once after about a year...and I'll never go again! 

I have cured every dental issue I've had...not just with toothsoap, but with other natural things like silver and tea tree oil.  The dentist wanted to do a root canal on a tooth that got infected..."It'll hurt so much you'll beg me to fix it."  Nope!  I have several teeth that different dentists have drilled too deep...and so have exposed roots, but I no longer get any infections or pain (if I do, I just kill the infection immediately).

As far as hair washing...we are using Aloe and Mud!  There is a product another member here suggested from Terressentials...and it's great!  But I'm working on my own formula so that I don't have such high expenses and can reduce plastic usage and transportation issues.  I've used alternative, low ingredient/toxicity shampoos for years...so this was just the next step in getting away from an industry that manipulates us!  It really leaves your skin soft, too (oh that reminds me...sugar scrubs - LOVE them for skin!  Salt is just too harsh for me).

Date Posted: 5/16/2012 3:33 PM ET
Member Since: 10/27/2007
Posts: 2,287
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What is more energy and water efficient......washing dishes by hand or using the diswasher?  The dishwasher is fairly new and meets the energystar standards.  We have several kids at home so we go through alot of dishes. 

I don't have that many dishes and I find it easier to wash by hand especially when they are not too particularly dirty.  DH disagrees and thinks that they should always go in dishwasher to sanitize them.  What are your thoughts?

 

Subject: My thoughts...I'm sure there are others!
Date Posted: 5/16/2012 4:31 PM ET
Member Since: 7/6/2008
Posts: 9,342
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I think nearly all appliances that use water, do have a strong debate about which is better.  First, make sure you're considering all of the "costs."

So, the dishwasher...

Labor, energy, water involved in the base materials and manufacture of the appliance.

Energy to transport appliance multiple times...until it reaches your home.  And then to dispose of it, as end-of-useful-life (and associated costs for either dumping/polluting or disassembling)

Then...

Actual energy, water, and detergent use in your home.

 

If you add up ALL the associated costs, handwashing will always win out.  I know how much people don't want to think about the entire life of a product, but...it's part of becoming aware.

 

Now that you have one...what makes more sense?

Well, there are a lot of factors involved in that.  How efficient your appliance is...and whether you always run full loads.  Compared to how efficient you are.  :)

If you have an on-demand water heater...fill something with soapy water and something else for rinsing (and turn off the water)...you'll be pretty efficient.  If you heat water all day, regardless of whether you use/need it...and run the water the whole time you are washing, then if you have a newer model/something energy efficient, chances are pretty good you're less so.

 

I'll be honest.  I have a water tank (it wasn't my choice, but I haven't replaced it...mostly due lack of local knowledge).  And we run the water most of the time we are washing.  So, we're not very efficient.  We also don't have a dishwasher...unless you count the teenager...who is resisting being efficient!  LOL

 

Okay, sanitation.  Americans are way (is there a politically correct term for anal?) well, they get totally carried away.  Disease needs 3 things to thrive:  Habitat, Moisture, Temperature...suitable for whatever the disease is.  If you eliminate one of those requirements, you effectively prevent disease.  So, if you are thinking bacteria...hot water is gonna do some of the job (depending on how hot and how long), and letting your dishes get dry is gonna to another part.  Soap helps, too (basically dessicates anything overexposed; so if you left a harsh quantity on your skin long enough, it would crack and bleed).

If you think about it...every time you touch the dish, you are potentially transfering bacteria.  And while it sits around...it's possible stuff lands on it...bugs crawl over it (no no...none of us has any bugs that we never see in our environments!), etc.  So, getting crazy about it...eh.

Our bodies deal with a constant assault from our environment and our food.  So, as long as you are observing normal hygiene (which truly did more to prevent and reduce disease transmission historically, than vaccines)...and food handling...well the rest of it is just down to personal preference and comfort level.

 

Ask your husband if he has noticed any increase in the types of illness associated with dish sanitation, among your family members, when you wash by hand.  Or vis versa...  It would give y'all a clue if there is an issue. 

And finally, I would say, that if you expect to get sick...well, it might be better to use the appliance for peace of mind!  Hope that helps!

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