Many people probably haven’t heard of this amazing natural product! I know the first time I heard about diatomaceous earth was on the Fox television show BONES. Temperance Brennan was talking about discovering diatomaceous earth near a body, or something along those lines… The details of the episode are lost to me, but the words stuck with me for sure. It is an odd word after all. Fast forward several years to having youngest circa 2012 the year I became afraid of everything.
Having kids changes you. Everything that was once safe was now out to harm your precious baby. BPAs, plastics, toxins in laundry soap, cancer causing bug killers, and weed killers were not only out to get my kid, but to take me out of the picture too. Things changed. I was now that hippy dip mom I always tease about. I made his laundry soap from scratch because DREFT was expensive and I couldn’t read all of the ingredients. All the articles out there said if you couldn’t read ALL of the ingredients pass it over, or it will kill you. I exaggerate, but you get the idea. Mom brain kicking in, and Momma Bear syndrome all bundled into one hormonal and overwhelmed package, ME, it was easy to get behind all natural products.
So in 2012 there was a new batch of ants that had invaded the house, and I had to get rid of them. How though when your tiny person is putting everything in his mouth, and touching every surface in the place?! It was then some how the word popped back into my head… DIATOMACEOUS EARTH. Back then I didn’t have the internet so I loaded up little one, and headed to the local library to do some research. Here’s what I learned….
Diatomaceous Earth is a naturally occuring, soft, siliceous sedimentary rock that has been crumbled into a fine powder. Short, less sciencey; version is that it is actually an aquatic fossil of an algae. It is often white, or off-white in color. Depending on the granularity, this powder can have an almost abrasive feel, and is odorless. Also known as DE, it has a variety of uses, and is also available as a food grade powder.
DE is a deadly powder with tiny sharp edges that can cut through bugs protective layers and dry them out. An added benefit of DE is that insects cannot develop resistance! DE will not harm worms or any beneficial microorganisms in the soil. Honest to goodness this stuff is amazing! If I locate an ant hill in the yard, dump some DE on it. Notice ants or spiders, or ear wigs around the foundation, dump some DE on it. The chickens develop a bout of lice, dump some DE on them. The dogs find a batch of ticks, dump some DE on them.
Remember in “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” when the dad is spraying Windex on everything? Elbow hurts, put Windex on it. Zit on your wedding day, put Windex on it… needless to say that DE is my Windex.
I take a(n empty) ketchup bottle from the dollar store, and scoop DE into it, and use it as a squeeze bottle. I puff the DE all along the foundation of the house, and don’t have to worry about it harming the dogs, kids or other animals. Yes, I did just say the the kids are animals. When I go into the chicken coop I liberally spread DE all through the bedding, and add it to their dust baths. When Japanese beetles come to devour my roses, beans, and leafy greens in the garden I just dust them with DE.
People actually take food grade DE. Apparently DE being made almost entirely of silica; which is a component of human ligaments, and cartilage, helps repair damage to these areas. As a dietary supplement DE helps move things out of your intestines and helps promote healthier hair, skin, bones, and joints.
For thinning hair it is said that after taking DE for a few weeks you will see new hair growth with a fuller healthier look.
For healthy sin production the silica helps collagen making your skin smoother and healthier.
Brittle nails become stronger in a few weeks after taking DE.
Internally DE can help create a more regular bowel movement and detox your digestive tract. Increasing collagen production can support healthy digestion and allows your body to absorb more nutrients and flush out more wastes. A healthy metabolism supported by collagen can help you manage your weight. Collagen also helps promote a reduction in joint pain because it strengthens the cartilage that cushions your joints. Some studies suggest that DE taken daily can help your cholesterol levels.
Externally silica is an ingredient in dental, skin care and cosmetic products, and can be used as a natural toothpaste. For your skin DE can be used as an exfoliant, mask, or body scrub.
if you have never used DE, but are looking for an all natural way to rid your garden, pets, poultry, and house of insects consider using DE. It can be found at any hardware store in the garden products. You will notice that it is nestled between the raid, home defense and other toxic products. The one I get is easy to spot because it comes in a yellow bag. You will also easily spot it with it’s incredibly long name (that I can never spell without the help of Google).
When the creepy crawlies come crawling in … remember to keep it simple with an all natural , non-toxic product, and keep living that simple life.