Spring is in the air and the ants are marching right into your house. You may want to hold off on buying those ugly little ant traps, the little yellow packets just may do the trick.
I'll never forget when I first read about Splenda. I jumped on the bandwagon as everyone else did. Then about four years ago, I read that you could use Splenda to kill household ants. So I dumped my bag of splenda in the dirt. Fascinated by my recent discovery, I began my research and here is what I found:
- Splenda was “discovered” accidentally in a lab back in 1975 while trying to create a new insecticide (Ewww...who decided it was safe for human consumption? Oh yeah the FDA did back in 1998).
- Whole Foods or Trader Joe's will not sell Splenda or any product that contains "sucralose" because it does not fit within their code of ethics of selling “real food”. (Thank you Whole Foods Market and Trader Joe's)
- Sucralose, the made-up name by the manufacturer of Splenda, contains chlorinated compounds. (Ohhh...Splenda made up the name sucralose...because anything that ends on "ose" makes it sound like yummy sugar)
- Chlorine is toxic and is not found in any food or table salt even though the manufacturer of Splenda will tell you it is fine. However there is chloride present in food and table salt, which is non-toxic. (Very sneaky Splenda makers)
- Chlorine, (which we now know is in Splenda), has caused so much damage to human health that Greenpeace has launched a Chlorine-Free Campaign, calling for a worldwide ban on chlorine. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) also maintains a strong anti-chlorine stance. (Did you know that cancer patients have high levels of chlorine in their bodies?)
- If you really want some motivation for staying away from Splenda and anything that contains it (example: Weight Watchers, Atkins and South Beach, flavored waters, Crystal Light, diet drinks anything "diet" or labeled as "sugar-free", "low in sugar" or no sugar" typically contains it. Yes, this includes your kids' favorite "no-sugar" Hawaiian Punch) and if you are a future mother, read all about baby boys being born with shortened male anatomy due to chlorine passed to them in the womb. (and we want to do this to our unborn children, why?)
- Studies show that people that consumed diet drinks were 41% more likely to be overweight than those who did not. (so diet drinks and foods are sabatoging our weight loss efforts? Seems like an oxymoron to me)
But honestly, any artificial sweetener will work. How do I know this? I have had both friends and family members try it with great success, even my sister-in-law who lives in a very rural part of Ohio. The nice thing about using up your little yellow (or blue or pink) packets is there are no harsh chemicals used. Your family does not breathe in all the chemicals, your baby doesn't find an ant trap and put it in their mouths and if your pets lick it, you can save the call to poison control. Now is the time to try some other safer alternative sweeteners like stevia and agave nectar syrup. And don't forget the old tried and trued, honey and real maple syrup (not Aunt Jemima).
Don't get mad at me if your favorite drink contains sucralose. There are ways to give our families safer options if using a sweetener is a must. Here are some fun family cocktails that you can try (and it is cheaper than buying bottled juice):
Homemade Lemonade: 1 1/2c of real lemon juice (about 6 lemons squeezed), 6 cups of cold water, 1/3 cup of raw honey (more or less to your liking). Mix and enjoy!
Chocolate milk: 1 TB of cocoa powder, 1TB of agave nectar syrup and 1 cup of your favorite milk
Homemade Flavored Water: 1 cup of carbonated water, 1TB of agave nectar syrup and half of your favorite fruit squeezed such as an orange. Or puree your favorite berry such as frozen strawberries and a kiwi.
Homemade Orange Pop: 2 liter bottle of carbonated water, 1/2 can of orange juice concentrate, 3 lemons squeezed.
Get creative in the kitchen with the kids and leave the Splenda to the ants.