Baking soda is a familiar household product that also goes by the names sodium bicarbonate, bicarbonate of soda and sodium hydrogen carbonate. The baking soda chemical or sodium bicarbonate formula is NaHCO3. This baking soda formula represents its composition of of sodium ions and bicarbonate ions. It’s a substance known for its alkalizing effects thanks to it’s ph of 9.
Sodium bicarbonate in it’s natural form is also known as nahcolite, a mineral that is found in various locations around the world. It is commercially mined in areas of California, Colorado, Botswana and Kenya. There are also large deposits in Mexico, Uganda and Turkey.
Some people get confused with baking soda vs. baking powder. Baking soda is a chemical leavening agent and so is baking powder, which means that when used in baking both baking soda and baking powder cause batters to rise. Throughout history, baking soda has been used as a rising agent when baking. It’s 100 percent sodium bicarbonate; so when mixed with acid, baking soda makes bubbles and gives off a carbon dioxide gas, causing the dough to rise. Baking powder and baking soda are similar yet different since baking powder is made up of sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) and one or multiple acid salts.
However, baking soda isn’t only used in the kitchen. It can also be used as;
Face Exfoliator – Remove dry skin from your face by creating your own baking soda exfoliant. Combine one teaspoon of baking soda with half a cup of water and rub it on your face in a circular motion, then rinse. Using baking soda for face exfoliation is an inexpensive way to refine skin, just don’t use baking soda too frequently because you don’t want it to upset the pH balance of your skin. It also prevents your skin from sunburns, stretch marks, discolouration and skin diseases.
Hair Cleanser – Baking soda for hair? Yes! Simply add a teaspoon of baking soda to your shampoo, rub it into your hair and rinse as usual. Baking soda shampoo is ultra clarifying so it’s a great way to remove dirt and oil as well as residue that is left over from hair products.
Brush and Comb Cleaner – You don’t want to use harmful chemicals to clean your hair tools so try baking soda instead! Take advantage of this baking soda benefit by creating a paste by combining two teaspoons of baking soda with one cup of water. Coat your brushes and combs with this paste and then rinse thoroughly.
Homemade Toothpaste – Baking soda toothpaste is a great way to improve dental health. Baking soda is known to increase plaque removal — that is why it’s commonly used in both conventional and natural toothpaste. Straight baking soda has abrasive qualities, and over time it may wear away enamel. Instead, to keep fresh breath, you can add baking soda to your toothpaste, make your own homemade toothpaste, or just dip your toothbrush in baking soda a few times a week.
Teeth Whitener – Baking soda uses for dental health continue! To keep your teeth looking pearly white, create your own paste with a teaspoon of baking soda and water. Once a week, rub the paste onto your teeth, let it sit for five minutes, and then rinse your mouth. This is such a great natural way to whiten your teeth and kill bacteria without any harsh
Heartburn and Indigestion Relief – Baking soda for heartburn is really a thing, so much so that conventional manufacturers of conventional heartburn medications include sodium bicarbonate in their formulates. Baking soda is a cost-effective way to reduce heartburn andindigestion, as opposed to other options like Tums and Rolaids, which also contain bicarbonate. Simply add half a teaspoon of baking soda to two cups of water. An hour after eating, drink this mixture to gain some relief.
Cancer Prevention –When you have a pH imbalance, unhealthy organisms are able to flourish, which damages tissues and organs, and compromises the immune system. Baking soda is known to increase the pH of acidic tumors without affecting the pH balance of healthy tissues and the blood. Scientific research has demonstrated that oral doses of sodium bicarbonate can raise tumor pH and inhibit spontaneous metastases in animal models of metastatic breast cancer.
Exercise Enhancer – Baking soda benefits can carry over to your exercise routine too. Soaking in a warm warm with a half cup of baking soda added is said to help neutralize lactic acid build up in the muscles after a workout. Some studies, as I mentioned earlier, also point towards its internal use to reduce fatigue post workout. It also may enhance athletic performance when consumed prior to physical activity.