There are lots of reasons to buy bulk foods online, from saving money to preparing for natural disasters. When you’re buying bulk foods online, it’s important to choose wisely.
So which are the best bulk foods online to buy?
The best answer to that is whatever foods you use the most of. To be more specific, here’s a list of some of the most commonly purchased bulk foods online and some tips on choosing which to buy:
When you’re stocking up on foods, rice is a staple that is on everyone’s list. If you’re going to be storing rice for long periods of time, make sure to buy white rice instead of brown rice. Brown rice contains the germ, which is the oil in the rice. The germ can go rancid much more quickly than white rice so you’ll only want to store about three months worth of a brown rice vs. nearly unlimited storage for the white varieties. Try basmati or jasmine rice for extra flavor or try forbidden rice for an exotic change.
With a tremendous variety to choose from beans are a one of the great staples. When stored properly, beans have been known to last for decades, so these are great to stock up on. You’ll probably want to buy the most popular beans: black turtle beans, kidney beans, pinto beans and garbanzo beans. Why not try some different beans like cannellini, adzuki, baby lima, great northern, or mung beans. Beans are a great staple food and when you’re buying bulk foods online, those staple foods are a great choice. Use them for soups, stews, dips, taco and burrito filling, eat them on green salads or chopped veggie salads. Bulk organic beans are definitely one of the best foods to stock up on.
One of the best staple foods, oats are available in a number of varieties: whole oat groats, rolled oats, and steel cut oats. Whole oat groats are an unprocessed oat kernel with the hull removed. Whole oat groats can be stored for quite some time; you can use a home grain mill to grind the groats into fresh flour as you need it. Steel cut oats are whole oat groats that have been cut into bits with steel blades. They’re also called pinhead oats and they look like a coarse grain. When making oatmeal from steel cut oats, your cooking time will be longer and your oatmeal will be nuttier and chewier than oatmeal made from rolled or quick oats. Rolled oats are your typical oatmeal variety – they come in various sizes from regular to thick and cooking times vary depending on the thickness. Quick oats have been rolled even flatter to have the shortest cooking time. Oats are not only great for making oatmeal but they’re also good for making cookies and breads.
A versatile grain that is higher in protein than other grains, quinoa is a fantastic choice when you’re buying bulk foods online. Quinoa can be quite expensive so buying in bulk will cut your costs and allow you to enjoy this incredibly healthy food. Quinoa cooks quickly in about 20 minutes and can be used in place of rice in most dishes. It can be eaten hot or cold, even as a breakfast porridge. Quinoa is available in a few different varieties: white, red, black and rainbow (a combination of the three). They all have a nutty flavor and great nutritional profile.
This often overlooked grain is another great pick. Buckwheat contains all eight essential amino acids, making it a complete protein that is very easy to digest. Although its name contains the word ‘wheat’, buckwheat is not part of the wheat family and contains no gluten. In fact it technically isn’t even a grain, it is a seed. It can be used to make porridge and cereals, and makes a great cooked grain base for a chopped veggie and grain salad. Buckwheat is also very useful in a variety of raw vegan dishes like granola and crackers.
When buying bulk foods online, it is important to only purchase a quantity that you will use before the product goes bad or gets stale. If you consume or use a lot of nuts, buying them in bulk will definitely save money but make sure to store them properly so they don’t go rancid. Because of their high fat content and tendency to go rancid, nuts should be kept refrigerated or even frozen if you’re going to store them for an extended period of time (8 months to a year). Some nuts store better than others so when nuts are on your list to buy bulk foods online, these are some of the better nuts to choose: Almonds, Hazelnuts, and peanuts have a higher fiber to fat ratio so they’ll store longer than nuts like walnuts and macadamia nuts.
Most people don’t think of buying spices in bulk when they are buying bulk foods online, but this is one place where you can really save money in the long run. Pick the spices you use the most for your cooking and baking, things like cinnamon, garlic powder, Italian seasoning and other seasoning blends. When you’re buying them in smaller quantities, you’re paying for the jar almost as much as the spice inside. In contrast, if you’re buying bulk foods online, most bulk spices come in 1 pound mylar bags which are lightweight, inexpensive and great for long term food storage. Once you open the bag, you’ll need to transfer the spics to something airtight.
Remember, make sure you have sealable storage containers and that you have a cool, dry place to store your bulk foods. If you don’t think you can use them quickly enough, split them with a friend and you’ll get the benefits of the low cost when buying bulk foods online without having more food than you’ll use.
15 Green Cleaning Product Recipes
1. Scrubbing Cleanser: Mix a few tablespoons of baking soda with a few squirts Bronner’s liquid soap for an effective, yet non-abrasive cleanser. Use a thinner version (more soap added) for a toilet bowl cleaner.
2. Tile Grout Cleaner: Mix 1 part water and 3 parts baking soda, mix into a paste. Apply to grout and let sit, scrub with toothbrush, wipe-up with sponge.
3. Floor cleaner: Mix several tablespoons of Bronner’s liquid soap in a bucket of water (roughly 1 part soap to 40 parts water) and stir gently.
4. Liquid Laundry Detergent:
Pour these ingredients in a one gallon jug (I stick a little funnel in the top to make it a bit easier). Pour 4 cups boiling water into the jug. Swirl until ingredients are dissolved in the liquid. Let liquid cool. Then fill jug almost to the top with cold water. The bubbles will overflow out of the bottle. I love using Dr. Bronner’s for green cleaning because unlike other similar products it is available in several different natural scents like lavender, tea tree, peppermint, almond and others. I use 1/2-1cup per load depending on size. For those of you concerned with HE washers…I haven’t noticed any more soap suds with this recipe. On a small load I will notice some suds, but on a large load it has low suds and works just great.
5. Fabric Softener: Add ½ – 1 cup vinegar to your softener dispenser
6. Bleach Alternative (Laundry): 1/4 cup hydrogen peroxide
7. Surface Cleaner: To a spray bottle add a 50/50 mix of hydrogen peroxide and water to clean your table tops, kitchen tops and bathrooms.
8. Glass Cleaner: In a 16 oz. or bigger spray bottle mix:
- 1 pint water
- 2 tablespoons vinegar
- 10-15 drops of essential oils (optional, but helps the vinegar smell)
Shake bottle & spray on windows. Use crumpled newspaper or cotton cloth to wipe off. If you have always used commercial window cleaner in the past, mix a couple drops of liquid castile soap or liquid dish soap in some of this mixture the first time you are green cleaning the windows to remove detergent residue.
9. All Purpose Cleaner:
- 1 tsp. borax
- 1/2 tsp. washing soda
- 1 tsp. liquid castile soap
- Essential oils as preferred- I use 4 drops lemon, 4 drops lavender and 10 drops orange
Add 2 cups of warm water. Distilled is best, but any water that has been boiled will work. Cover bottle and shake well. Use as needed. I use as bathroom cleaner, floor pre-treater, kitchen cleaner and on toys to disinfect.
10. Oven Cleaner: Dampen inside of oven with water. Sprinkle liberally with baking soda. Leave 20 minutes, then scrub until clean.
11. Microwave Cleaner:
- ½ cup vinegar
- 2 cups water
Combine in microwave safe bowl, heat on high for 3-4 minutes, remove bowl and wipe down inside of microwave.
12. Mildew/Germ Killer :
- 16 oz spray bottle
- 1 part hydrogen peroxide
- 2 parts water
Spray. Let sit. Rinse after 1 hour.
13. Wood Floor Cleaner:
- ¼ c. vinegar
- 1 gal. warm water
Mop or rag should be slightly damp for cleaning.
14. Linoleum Floor Cleaner:
- 1/2 c. vinegar
- 1 gal. warm water
Mop or rag can be fully wet for cleaning.
15. Vegetable/Fruit Wash:
- 1 cup vinegar
Fill sink with water, add vinegar, and stir. Add the fruit you want to wash and let soak for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes remove fruit from water, pat dry and store.
A Few Extra Green Cleaning Tips
- During spring and summer put up a clothes line and hang dry all your laundry
- At night run your dishwasher without the heat-dry setting and let them air dry overnight.
- Set your washer on cold/cold for the most eco-friendly setting
- Use microfiber cloths instead of sponges
I hope these simple recipes will help you see how easy it is to make the switch to green cleaning. Green cleaning not only helps you stay healthy but with a few basic ingredients you can save tons of money as well!
Love it or loathe it, we all need to grocery shop. Now matter which way you feel about it, doing your organic shopping online is easy and convenient. In fact, convenience is the number one reason people do their organic shopping online. It saves you time and money, and helps the environment by keeping your car off the road. These days, you can buy just about anything online, so why not leave the car in the garage and grab your keyboard instead.
What makes organic shopping online so convenient?
- You get to shop in your jammies! Just think, you don’t even have to get dressed to go grocery shopping. No one will know if you have bed head or stinky morning breath, and if you’ve got insomnia and feel like shopping in the middle of the night, stores are open!
- You do your organic shopping online over the course of a few days whenever you get the time. Most sites will allow you to create saved shopping lists that allow you to add things here and there until you have enough items together to place your order. If you’re busy and don’t have a whole lot of time, or if you tend to think of things you need randomly throughout the day, add them to your list and buy them later.
- Products arrive at your door. Its like getting a present every time your order comes to the door. No hauling bags and bags from the store to the car, then the car into the house; your box arrives at your doorstep without you have to leave the house!
- Save fuel! Since UPS and USPS trucks are already driving through your area delivering to your neighbors, why not have them deliver yours too. This way your groceries are basically carpooling with your neighbors packages.
- Find products that are unusual or hard to find locally. Not every product you want is at your local store, but you can find just about anything you want online. Why trudge from store to store only to find out they don’t have what you need. You can get exactly what you want and need online, any time.
What are your reasons for doing your organic shopping online?
You may be surprised to find out that organic nuts, especially raw tree nuts, such as almonds, cashews, walnuts, and pecans have been linked to lower cholesterol, improved heart health, reduced risk of cancer and support of a healthy weight.
Many people avoid eating organic nuts because of the fat and calories in them, however a small handful of organic nuts can be a great improvement to your daily diet. High in fiber, protein, unsaturated fats,and vitamins and minerals, organic nuts have been shown to be protective of a variety of diseases.
Top 8 Organic Nuts
Walnuts contain the highest quantity of antioxidants of all organic nuts. Those antioxidants protect the body from the cellular damage that can cause cancer and heart disease. Walnuts also have the highest ratio of Omega-3 fatty acids which are anti-inflammatory. Approximately 90% of the phenols in walnuts are found in the skin, that waxy, sometimes flaky outermost part of shelled walnuts. There can be slight bitter flavor to this skin so you may be tempted to remove it, but I’d encourage you to get used to the flavor and eat the skins. About 14 walnut halves has 185 calories and 18 grams fat.
With the most fiber of any of the organic nuts, almonds also have the most vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant. Almonds have been shown to lower LDL cholesterol as well as decrease insulin resistance. Almonds are the only nut and one of the few proteins that are alkaline forming, protecting you from osteoporosis, poor immune function, low energy and gaining weight. About 23 almonds has 170 calories and 15 grams fat
When you’re choosing which organic nuts to snack on, make pecans on the top of your list. Pecans are among the most antioxidant-rich nuts and may help prevent plaque formation in the arteries. Studies have shown that eating pecans can help lower LDL cholesterol as much as 33%. Pecans are also good for brain health; the vitamin E in pecans help delay progression of neurological diseases. About 18 halves has 200 calories and 21 grams fat
This is one of the best organic nuts for getting iron and zinc in your diet. Also a good source of magnesium, 1 ounce of cashews provides nearly 25% of your daily need. Magnesium is needed for more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body. It helps maintain normal muscle and nerve function, keeps heart rhythm steady, supports a healthy immune system, and keeps bones strong. It also helps regulate blood sugar levels, promotes normal blood pressure, and has been shown to prevent and manage hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes. About 18 nuts has 165 calories and 13 grams fat.
These powerful nuts contain a high amount of selenium, a mineral that may help prevent bone, prostate and breast cancers. Brazil nuts are also a very good source of vitamin-E, a powerful antioxidant. Researchers with the The Journal of Clinical Investigation, report that the enzyme most important in keeping the thyroid hormone active contains an amino acid called selenocysteine. This rare amino acid is formed in the body through foods that contain selenium. Since this mineral is mostly found in meats and bread, it is a very important nut for people on a raw food diet. About 5 to 6 nuts has 185 cals and 18 grams fat.
One of the most calorie dense of the organic nuts, macadamia nuts contain the highest amount of monounsaturated fats per serving. This heart-healthy type of fat lowers LDL cholesterol and blood pressure. Studies have found that eating macadamia nuts reduces triglyceride levels, total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol by nearly 10 percent. Macadamias are also an excellent source of minerals such as calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese and zinc. About 10 nuts has 200 calories and 22 grams of fat.
With less than 4 calories per nut, pistachios may be the most dieting-friendly nut. Getting them in the shell makes them extra beneficial because it slows down your pace, making your snack last longer so that you feel full before you’ve eaten too many. Studies have found that eating 2 ounces of pistachios daily may reduce lung cancer risk. Pistachios are a good source of many phyto-nutrients that may contribute to their overall antioxidant activity, including carotenes, vitamin E, and polyphenolic antioxidant compounds. Research has shown that these compounds help the human body remove toxic free radicals, protecting the body from diseases, cancers, as well as infections. About 50 nuts has 160 calories and 14 grams of fat.
These organic nuts are rich in Vitamin E which is helpful for preventing cataracts and macular degeneration. Vitamin E is also great for healthy skin and reducing your risk of dementia. Hazelnuts contain high levels of monounsaturated fats which can improve heart health and help control Type 2 diabetes. They are rich source of minerals like manganese, potassium, calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, zinc, and selenium. About 21 nuts has 180 calories and 17 grams of fat.
It’s always best to maintain variety in your diet. A great way to do that is to make your own trail mix that contains each of these organic nuts. Make up a big batch and portion out single serving sizes so you have a healthy and filling snack every day. What are your favorite trail mix recipes? Which types of organic nuts do you prefer?
Mother’s Day is right around the corner and all moms deserve to enjoy this special day. Mother’s Day is about celebrating the special mothers in your life, whether it be your own mother or your mother in-law, a sister or a close friend who is a mom, celebrating them by giving them an organic gift or participating in an eco-friendly activity allows you to not only make mom happy but the environment and your wallet as well! And while kids mean well, planning Mother’s Day and buying gifts (especially if it’s an organic gift) isn’t always their forte, so dads and co-moms listen up!
In this blog post we’ve listed some organic gift ideas for Mother’s Day as well as a wide range of eco-friendly and fun activities the whole family will enjoy.
Organic Gift Ideas for Mother’s Day:
Artisana Gift Set: If you’ve got a vegan and/or gluten free momma at home this is a perfect one for you. I personally would love getting this because it’s one of my favorite organic brands!
Sweet Tooth Basket: Perfect for mommas who get sweet tooths (isn’t that all of us?), and they’ll feel less guilty about eating these.
Detox Gift Set: All moms need some time for themselves, usually we are too busy taking care of everyone else, this set lets mom treat herself while taking care of her body.
shopOrganic Gift Cards: Honestly, this is the gift I’d want because then I can choose whatever organic gift I want to buy!
Eco-Friendly Activities for Mother’s Day:
Mother’s Day Performance
If you have elementary aged children at home who love to be the center of attention this is a good one. Encourage your kids to put together any type of performance, sing a song, write a poem, make up a dance or even put on a silly fashion show.
Throw an Organic Tea Party
This one is a favorite in my family. Have a tea party for mom. If you have any dusty tea sets, wash them off and put them to good use. Decorate the table pretty or if it’s nice outside you can have an outdoor tea party too.
Make little sandwiches and treats with her favorite organic teas. And make it an event (we like to dress up for our tea parties)!
Get active mommas! Head outdoors, take a hike, or ride your bikes. Whatever mom’s favorite activity is, do it together as a family, whether it’s going to hit some balls at a batting cage, kicking around a soccer ball at the park or gardening.
Moms love all things homemade. I know I just adore it when the kids come home from school with something special they made just for us. You know what, it might not be too pretty, it might fall apart or break, or the pieces of paper might fall off from not using enough glue, but they made that special just with mom in mind, and that is what makes these gifts so treasured.
Decorate a container (and old coffee can would work) or use a large mason jar and have all your siblings write their favorite memories of mom on a strip of paper and stick it in the jar. It could also be loving or encouraging words, a favorite scripture or even an inspirational quote or saying. This is perfect for moms and grandmas that live far away. Send this to her and tell her to read just one a day until she gets through them all!
I hope that these ideas will help make your next Mother’s Day one to remember and remember, when all else fails, tell your mom you love her.
Have you ever received an organic gift for Mother’s Day? What was your favorite Mother’s Day gift (to give and/or receive)?
Today marks shopOrganic’s five year anniversary! In honor of this milestone we’d like to take a look back at the last five years and how they’ve helped shape and restore our core values and beliefs. We started shopOrganic in 2008 with the intention to ‘do well by doing good,’ believing that focusing on providing consumers access to organic and non-GMO products is ultimately more sustainable and better for the planet. Last year we re-launched shopOrganic & shopGMOfree after confirming that all of the products we carry do not contain GMOs. By also removing any brands whose parent companies donate money to anti-GMO labeling causes, we took an important and necessary step to insure that we were only doing business with companies who have similar core values.
One of the most interesting aspects of our business over the last five years is all the different types of customers we have, and how they’ve all come to organic foods and products in different ways. It’s true that recent studies have shown that more than 90% of Americans want to know if there food has GMOs in it. That’s an overwhelming majority of America and an overwhelming majority of Americans do not have easy access to organic food and/or products. Starting shopOrganic, an online organic store, was in part inspired by our desire to help serve people no matter where they live, and no matter how they came to organics. As more and more people are becoming aware of and concerned about the presence of GMO’s and pesticides in their foods, we have simultaneously seen our business grow, which is exciting in itself, but what’s more exciting is the fact that more and more people are choosing organic living and sustainable ways of life that not only benefits them but the rest of us and the world as well.
These past five years haven’t really changed our core values instead they’ve reinforced them and made them even stronger than they were before. The challenges of starting and operating a small business, especially one that started in such a down economy, have been completely outweighed by our great customers. These are just a few of the amazing comments we’ve gotten from our customers:
“I am new to this journey of a natural, pure, sustainable lifestyle for myself and my family; and am inspired by the dedication of your company to making this possible. Thank you for your boldness…”
”Thank you for the GMO step you have taken! I know I appreciate this as well as my family. Please keep up the good work!”
”I really cannot emphasize to you or your supervisor(s) enough what a wonderful surprise it was to receive your thoughtful e-mail. I think I’ve become desensitized and oddly accustomed to the cold way most online vendors do business. This type of exceptional customer service is what should set web stores apart from each other, not simply price.”
”I have commented before giving you guys major kudos for carrying such amazing foods for people who are dairy/calcium intolerant. I just wanted to say thank you, I got my most recent order today and you guys included not 1 but 2 extra treats for me to sample! Thank you so much ”
We want to say thank you to all of our shopOrganic customers, followers, and friends, who’ve made commitments to organic living allowing us to grow, and helping everyone to better take care of the world we share. We wouldn’t be here without you!
There are numerous benefits to planting your own organic garden at home. However, getting started can often be the hardest part. In this blog post we’ve listed some tips for starting your own organic garden.
Planning Your Organic Garden
Plan your garden before planting your seeds and plants it’ll help you produce the best harvest possible. Make a decision on what fruits, herbs and vegetables grow best in your area and find out when the best time to plant your seeds is. Find the best organic seeds you can and research locals who are willing to share seeds. Let your kids help pick out seeds to get them more involved and excited about the process!
Keep in mind when choosing seeds: less is more. It may seem like a good idea to plant every edible plant that you love to eat, but it may be better to start with a small, manageable garden in the beginning. If you plant too many of one plant, you may find yourself selling zucchini bread to all your neighbors.
Start small and expand each season. Experiment with various plants and find what grows best. Next decide how much space you can use for your garden and what your budget will be. For smaller yards, a raised garden bed works well and is very affordable. You can also make a small herb garden with pots and boxes.
Make sure your yard has adequate sun, most plants/seeds need at least 6 hours of direct sunlight. If you have limited sunlight here are some great shade tolerant plants: kale, lettuce, garlic, bok choy, potatoes, chard, carrots, spinach, turnips, scallions, beets, arugula, mustard greens, parsley, and cilantro.
Finding the Right Tools
Next, you’ll need tools. While experienced gardeners are likely to have three times this many tools in their shed, if you are like me – someone who is just starting out, this list will give you a basic idea of the tools you’ll need to have to start you own organic garden:
- Spading fork
- Leaf rake
- Bow rake
- Garden gloves
- Pruning shears
*If you have little ones at home, get some dirt in a shallow card board box…with her own set of garden tools, and then they can work right along with mom and dad!
Next it’s time to think about where you are going to get some great soil. If you are planning on using the existing soil, you want to make sure that no chemicals have ever been used on that soil or the grass. You then will need to add some quality organic compost to your existing soil. You can either do this by hand with a pitch fork and some muscle or you can easily rent a rotary tiller from your local hardware store or borrow from a neighbor.
If you are planning on using raised beds, you can either buy organic compost by the bag for small beds or for larger beds you probably will need to seek out someone local who can deliver bulk organic compost. Always keep in mind, once you create your soil, never walk on it. Roots like to grow in loose soil, not compacted soil.
Watering Your Organic Garden
Lastly we need to talk about watering, watering definitely matters. If there is one thing that I have read and learned from others in regards to water is that: less is more.
Over-watering leads to plants with shallow, immature root systems and also creates more work for you, as your plants will come to depend on regular watering. So here is a good rule of thumb, water newly seeded areas daily and newly planted areas probably every 2-3 days. By late spring you should only have to water every 1-3 times a week.
Now there you have it a few tips to help you make the leap to organic gardening. Have fun with it and get the family involved, celebrate Earth Day everyday by growing your own organic garden!
Bulk organic foods are a healthy, environmentally friendly and cost-effective option for consumers wanting quality organic foods. With food costs rising, buying bulk organic foods is also a great way to gain some food security in your home. Having stored bulk organic food in your home is a great way to keep you and your family well fed in times of crisis or scarcity. We’re going to look at the reasons to buy bulk organic food as well as some tips to get you started.
Why are bulk organic foods healthy?
Typically, bulk organic foods like rice, beans, legumes, nuts, seeds, and grains are about as unprocessed as you can get if you’re not growing your own. We’ve all heard that a whole food diet is optimal for our health and by avoiding packaged products, we’re avoiding processed foods. Buying bulk organic foods is a great way to make sure you’re consuming whole foods.
Why are bulk organic foods environmentally friendly?
Think about the packaging costs associated with buying a consumer sized bag of rice. From the labor involved in the manufacturing process to the plastic bags used for every 1 or 2 pound bag, it really adds up when you think about how much of that one item you might consume in 6 months or a year. Studies have shown that when comparing bulk foods over pre-packaged foods, buying in bulk saves an average of 54 percent on delivery costs and packing material. Those savingsare passed on to the environment, which sees a reduction in cardboard, plastic and other packaging waste. Bulk organic foods often come in 25 or 50 pound paper sacks and are meant to be stored in sealable, reusable containers. You may need to make a small investment in food storage buckets with lids, but you can use them over and over again.
Why are bulk organic foods cost-effective?
Buying bulk organic foods can save you a lot of money in the long run. The initial investment may seem like a lot but when you crunch the numbers, you’ll see that it’s well worth it. Packaged foods cost more money for a number of reasons. First, there’s the actual packaging cost involved in individually packaging small amounts. Then there’s the cost associated with the branding of that item. The costs involved in packaging, the brand name, advertising, pr, shipping & handling and more are all passed on to you as the consumer. The reason bulk organic foods are so inexpensive is that there’s no marketing cost involved, and minimal packaging, and because, like the Costco model, it’s cheaper to buy a greater quantity, no matter what.
There are certain items that I always buy in bulk because I know I’ll go through them and it’s just easier to know that I always have it on hand. Organic popcorn is a great example. In my family, we love our movie night tradition and we’ve got to have our popcorn. So I buy my organic popcorn in bulk not only because it saves money, but because I don’t run out of it as often as if I was buying smaller sizes and that makes for a happier family.
Tips for buying bulk organic foods:
1) Share with a friend or neighbor. If you don’t think you’d go through a 25 pound bag of beans by yourself, split it with someone else and you’ll both get the benefits.
2) Make sure to store them properly, typically in a cool, dry place.
3) Stock up on good quality plastic or glass containers to store your bulk organic foods in order to keep them free from critters, moisture and light.
4) If you have a vacuum sealer, use it on your bulk organic foods to extend their shelf life.
5) Plan to use your bulk organic foods within about 6 months to a year of purchasing them. While beans and some grains will last much, much longer than that, you’ll avoid wasting food by planning for 6 months to a year at a time.
6) Check with local restaurants to see if they have any reusable food storage buckets. A local chain here in Tucson sells their used pickle buckets which are great for storing bulk organic foods. Your local restaurants would probably do the same.
What types of bulk organic foods can you find?
You’d be surprised how many bulk organic foods are available. From beans and legumes to rice, flour and grains, sweeteners, baking ingredients, nuts and seeds, cereal and granola, dried fruit, spices and herbs, even pasta and soaps. Don’t be intimidated by the volume of food. In this cost-conscious, health-conscious, and environmentally-conscious world, buying bulk organic foods is worth a try.
When I started my journey to healthy living back in 2006, I had no idea that healthy living included… well, all parts of “living”. This meant considering what I put on my skin, in my hair, even what I washed my family’s clothes and dishes with. It took me a good 6 years into my healthy living to finally realize that everything we do affects our health, not just what we eat. It’s time to get rid of the Mr. Yuck stickers, to throw out your conventional, chemical ridden cleaning supplies and start green cleaning!
Not only will you get all those chemicals out of your house, but green cleaning also is going to save you money. Gone will be the days where you have to buy a different cleaning product for every room in your house, for every appliance. With organic/green cleaning products you will be able to clean your WHOLE house with just a few different supplies. In this post I will share with you how I got started green cleaning:
1. Green Cleaning Starts with Getting Rid of Other Cleaners
I went through my whole house and took every conventional, chemical, cleaning product I had and put it in a big box (this included my dish soap, glass cleaner, air freshener, hand soap dispensers, sprays, disinfecting wipes, laundry detergent, bathroom, kitchen cleaners, etc.) after I was done, I had a very large box overflowing with chemicals.
2. Getting Rid of Non-Green Cleaning Products
I properly & safely disposed of our household chemical products, meaning I didn’t dump them down the sink , toilet or throw them in our trash (which could lead it back into our environment and lead to further pollution and we don’t want to risk that!). The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has excellent tips for how to properly and safely dispose of your household chemical materials.
3. Shopping for Green Cleaning Ingredients
This is the fun part: shopping for your new green cleaning household products! Here is a list of basic green cleaning products that I use for my whole household:
- Dr. Bronner’s Liquid Castile Soap is one of my favorites and I always keep this in my house. One bottle goes a long way as it’s super concentrated. Dr. Bronner’s is an excellent choice for green cleaning because it is made from organic all natural vegetable and hemp oils and uses no animal fats or synthetic chemicals.
- White Vinegar, is one of the most inexpensive, natural and a very effective cleaning super hero that can stand up to most any commercial product.
- Hydrogen Peroxide, seem weird to you? Most people have it around for cleaning cuts and scrapes… but this little brown bottle does wonders for cleaning the house!
- Baking Soda/Washing Soda - I could honestly write a whole entire blog with the wonderful benefits and uses of baking soda, everyone needs this as a staple in their home.
- Borax is a naturally occurring mineral made up of sodium, boron, oxygen, and water which makes it an excellent choice for green cleaning. You can find this in the laundry section of your local grocery store and one box will last you months. I use this primarily for my laundry soap.
- Spray bottles/Containers now that you have thrown out all your household products you are going to need new containers and bottles to put all your new Green Cleaning concoctions in. This is a very inexpensive start up cost. Any grocery/house ware store sells empty spray bottles for a very affordable price. I also recycle and reuse my gallon vinegar bottles for my homemade Laundry detergent.
These basic green cleaning tips and products should help you get started on your own spring cleaning regimen! Did we miss any favorites? What green cleaning products do you love?
Gluten intolerance is on the rise in America. It seems like everywhere you turn there’s another article about gluten sensitivities. Estimates have shown that 40 percent of the population in the U.S. now suffers from gluten intolerance. Celiac disease affects 1 in every 133 Americans, but gluten intolerance that hasn’t been diagnosed as Celiac has risen dramatically over the last 20 years.
Gluten Intolerance and GMOs
Is it a coincidence that the increase began just when GMO’s came into the marketplace? In researching the correlation between the gluten intolerance and the rise of GMO’s I found quite a bit of evidence that pointed toward a connection. Researchers and food safety advocates are starting to take a closer look at the role that GMO’s play in this dramatic increase.
When a person has gluten intolerance and ingests gluten, the body treats that gluten as an invader and attacks it. During this process the microvilli in the small intestine are damaged leaky gut syndrome can develop. The gut wall becomes permeable and microscopic particles of food ‘leak’ into the body. Those particles end up in the bloodstream and the body responds to them with inflammation. This process can set the stage for a whole host of diseases from autism to irritable bowel syndrome and even cancer.
Jeffrey Smith’s documentary Genetic Roulette: The Gamble of Our Lives shows clearly how genetically modified crops are damaging the digestive tracts of animals. Because the Bt toxin in genetically modified corn kills insects by exploding their stomachs, Smith believes when mammals ingest that food, it creates holes in the gut lining, leading to leaky gut syndrome. This is one explanation for gluten intolerance increasing so dramatically since GMOs were introduced into the marketplace.
Not Just Gluten Intolerance
It’s not just gluten intolerance that has been on the increase but a whole host of digestive disorders: irritable bowel syndrome, ulcerative colitis, chronic constipation, gastrointestinal infections, Crohn’s disease, leaky gut syndrome and acid reflux have all increased in the last two decades since the introduction of GMO’s
An unfortunate aside to this is that most gluten free packaged products are made with genetically modified ingredients. Unless you’re buying organic gluten free products, they will often contain corn, soy or canola that are genetically modified.
In the film, Smith speaks with health care practitioners who have had great success with their patients with gluten intolerance simply by removing GMO’s from their diets. It can take a while for the gut to heal, depending on the individual, but by eliminating any genetically modified foods from the diet, symptoms will reverse themselves.
If you suffer from gluten intolerance, make sure you’re looking for organic gluten free products. If a product doesn’t specify that it is organic and it contains corn, soy, or canola, chances are very high that there are GMO’s in the product. Look for the USDA Organic logo and read your labels carefully.