The Joy of Green Cleaning – Book Review

by Michael Smith (Veshengro)

jogl The Joy of Green Cleaning
4th Revised Edition 2011
by Leslie Reichert
available as E-book and as bound copy
97 pages
ISBN: 978-1-4276-3444-3 (E-book)

Ed Begley Jr., Environmental Leader, Author & Actor says about this book: “I love this book! A simple, yet necessary resource for learning how to take the toxins out of your home.”

The fact is that we are using way too many toxins in our home to kill everything bacterial and that is not good.

Our Elders kept a clean home with materials to hand such as soap, vinegar, etc., and also a fair deal on elbow grease.

It was a clean home but not a sterile one. A sterile home is a dangerous one, foe you and me, the environment and the Planet as a whole.

Our great-grandmother and even grand-mothers would have cleaned their homes with four simple things: white vinegar, salt, baking soda and Borax, just like Leslie's great-grandmother has done. Many, like the author's great-grandmother, lived to be very old and would have cleaned their entire lives without using any antibacterial spray, bleach, or the other things we are told we need to use to keep our homes truly clean.

For too long, though only some twenty or so years, have we been throwing antibacterial cleaners at bacteria in our homes, killing all the beneficial bacteria while making the many of the nasty ones stronger and thsu we have caused great harm.

It is a proven fact now that Triclosan and other antibacterial agents are the main cause of the MRSA and other such viruses and bacteria that have become resistant to anything that we can throw at them. The overuse of antibiotics in medicine, human as well as veterinary, and the overuse of antibacterial agents in the home and elsewhere are coming to haunt us and bite us in the behind, if we are not very careful.

We don't need all those chemical agents. The truth is that most regular cleaning can be done without any toxic chemicals. Simple things in your kitchen cupboards can do a great job cleaning your home. Baking soda, vinegar, sea salt, lemon juice, and hydrogen peroxide can be used in place of most grocery store cleaners.

This book is a valuable guide to non-toxic, though I have my reservations as to Borax and hydrogen-peroxide, as they are not as harmless as may be thought but as long as they are not ingested and treated with respect they are fine. At least they break down harmless in the environment.

I have been using vinegar myself for many cleaning applications and have found that it does not have to be necessarily distilled white vinegar; ordinary Malt vinegar does the job well and cider vinegar is the best of all.

Burned on stuff in a saucepan or crock pot? Put in a cup of neat vinegar and leave standing for a couple of hours, then put into the dishpan in hot soapy water and soak for a few minutes. No need to do lots of scrubbing, it just comes off.

Vinegar is one of those, in my view, miracle things and we are really undervaluing it. It has so many uses aside from putting it on our fish & chips (chips are potato fries to our American cousins).

I will admit that I have not tried the recipes for natural cleaners in Leslie's book as yet but am aiming to do so. I have had had enough bad experiences by now with chemical stuffs. Nearly ended up with searing of the lungs the other day by putting some bleach into cleaning water that had a load of vinegar in it. Yikes! Chemical warfare agent for sure.

I have but one little negative remark but that is as to the layout of the E-book and not in any other way. It should be centered rather than left and right aligned as, is anyone would wish to print and bind this E-book, especially if they print single sided on previously used paper as I do, they might have difficulties reading the left aligned pages.

I have found that centering the pages in the payout and having page numbers in the center in the footer is the best way of laying out an E-book for, while some folks may read such a book – or any E-book – on the computer screen, there will be many who wish to print out a copy for themselves. I know that I prefer it that way.

On the other hand, this is a much needed book and I can but hope that it will bring many people into the realm of green cleaning.

© 2011