Please, don’t reach for your box of baking soda until you read this post. If I had not become aware of the dangers of GMOs and all the other poisons in our food supply, I would probably have never asked myself about the origin of baking soda.
I mean, it’s baking soda, there wouldn’t be a reason for anyone to mess with that, right? Wrong. As we continued to make the transition into a Non-Gmo, organic, no processed food life, I began to wonder about the base ingredients I was using to prepare our food and make our hygiene products. I began to take a look at baking soda and what I found shocked and befuddled me!
All baking sodas are created equal, right?
True baking soda is a mineral found in nature in evaporated lake beds. Its use dates back at least as far as the ancient Egyptians who used it for mummification, medicinal purposes, personal hygiene, and household tasks. In its natural form, it is called nahcolite. To much information, huh? But I wanted to make the point that it does occur in nature and like many things in nature, man thinks he can do better.
Most of the world’s baking soda is made by chemical reactions!
Green River, Wyoming supplies baking soda to the United States and about 1/4 of the world. The baking soda from Wyoming is mined from trona ore which is a raw material that gets refined (fancy word for chemically altered) into soda ash. Then the soda ash is treated with heat and carbon dioxide to make sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) and sodium phosphates (detergents). Ta Da! You now have chemically created baking soda! The kind that comes in the “orange box….” This indeed blows my mind! Why go through all that trouble when you can just mine it straight from the earth?
Don’t lose hope, there are other choices.
You will be glad to know that there are some sources for true baking soda. I buy Bob’s Red Mill. They mine it in Colorado, directly from the ground in its natural state of nahcolite (sodium bicarbonate). There are no chemical reactions needed or used, just pure sodium bicarbonate. There are a few other choices out there like Frontier Brand.
Is it worth the extra cost?
We do all that we can to avoid chemicals, unnatural products. It really isn’t that much more expensive and the peace of mind I get when cooking our food, or brushing our teeth is worth a couple of dollars to me. There are so many uses for baking soda. I do use the “orange box” of baking soda for cleaning. I buy a large box and since I wear gloves to scrub things, it doesn’t come into contact with my skin.
I hope this clears up the question of whether all baking sodas are created equal, they definitely are not! As with all the things we talk about, you have to decide what’s best for you and your family. You are the one who has to feel good about the decisions you make for your home. I am just here to shine the light on the truth for you.
We will share another post for the many uses of baking soda another time. Remember to leave you comments, questions, or ideas in the comments or use the contact me page. I am here to help you in any way I can.
Safe and Happy Journey,
Rhonda and The Pack