Tag Archives: soapnuts

why i oscillate between natural and chemical

9 May

Most of you know about my semi-minimalistic lifestyle. I try to avoid synthetic chemicals as much as I can. And here are some of my ideas on the topic:

Naturals are great for prevention. Chemicals are great for emergencies. My son and I don’t often fall sick. We don’t have too many allergies. We are both lazy and don’t go out much, and rarely get cuts, bruises and burns 😛 So, we don’t use many chemicals for healing.

How I got started with naturals was when my son “grated” his finger on a vegetable grater once. His nail was grated out. It was very bloody and gross. He was very brave and didn’t cry one bit. I rushed him to the hospital, and got him bandaged. I gave him turmeric milk for 2 days, and each day, I saw his finger heal visibly. Then he went away with his Dad for a weekend, and, obviously, no turmeric milk for him there. He came back on Monday with his injury looking exactly like it did on Friday. I started the turmeric milk again, and he was quickly healed. That, to me, was the best evidence I ever needed. No amount of testimonials from others can convince someone as much as personal experience.

Here is the interesting juxtaposition. When my son got that big cut, I rushed to Urgent Care. He needs help, Now! Nothing can can help “Now” better than modern day, chemical, allopathic medicines. But all the traditional medicine systems in the world help with building immunity from within. And that’s what we want to spend 99% of our time and energy on. And we hope that 1% emergencies will be few and far-between.

A similar example I have is for laundry. I switched to soap-nuts for laundry (And yes, I did a whole week of research to find the best brand and the best quality). It works “good enough”, it gets the clothes clean. There are no optical brighteners and color enhancers. There is no added bleach for whiter whites. Over time, whites will go pale yellowish in color. That is why previous generations used “Tinopal” and/or “neel” (indigo dye) to whiten whites. As luck would have it, I realized I hardly have any white outerwear. So, most of my clothes get washed in soapnuts. The “white” socks and inner wear get sorted out in a separate load with commercial, “green” detergent and get added bleach.

We live in the modern world and we need to find the right balance. Our bodies take hundreds of years of evolve, and we cannot adapt to modern chemicals within 50-80 years. I try to go natural as much as I can. And I use chemicals when I need help, “Now!”