Share on Facebook

10 unusual uses for food

It provides nutrients and fills a hungry stomach, but that’s not all your food can do. Here are 10 unusual’and healthy’uses for food

1 / 12
lemon

1. Clean and whiten nails

You can keep your nails looking good without the help of a manicurist-all it takes is a little bit of lemon. Add the juice of 1/2 lemon to a cup of warm water and soak your fingertips in the mixture for five minutes. Once you’ve pushed back your cuticles, rub a piece of lemon peel back and forth against your nail. Voila!

2 / 12
chew gum

2. Treat flatulence and heartburn

Need to settle your stomach gases and relieve heartburn? Chew a stick of spearmint gum. The oils in the spearmint act as an antiflatulent, while chewing stimulates the production of saliva, nautralizing stomach acid and correcting the flow of digestive juices. Spearmint also acts as a digestive aid.

For more reasons to pick up a pack, read our article on why chewing gum is good for your health.

3 / 12
powdered milk

3. Impromptu makeup remover

When you run out of makeup remover and you can’t get to the store, use powdered milk instead. Just mix 3 tablespoons of powdered milk with 1/3 cup of warm water in a jar and shake well. Add more water or powder as necessary to achieve the consistency of heavy cream. Now you are ready to apply your makeshift makup remover with a facecloth. When you’re done, wipe it off and rinse with water.

4 / 12
mustard powder

4. Relax stiff muscles

Next time you take a bath in Epsom salt, throw in a few tablespoons of yellow mustard too. The mustard will enhance the soothing effects of the Epsom salt and also help to relax stiff, sore muscles.

5 / 12
oats

5. Make a dry shampoo

Wake up late and need to skip the suds to get to work on time? No worries! Just keep a batch of dry shampoo on hand in an airtight container for those mornings where your alarm clock seems to be “malfunctioning.” To make your own dry shampoo, blend one cup of oatmeal until it is a fine powder, then add one cup of baking soda and mix well. Rub a bit of the mixture into your hair, giving it a minute or two to soak up any oil, then brush or shake it out. (Tip: you may want to do this over a towel to avoid a huge mess.)

6 / 12
oils

6. Make a shaving cream substitute

Razor? Check. Shaving cream? Uh-oh… If you’ve run out, don’t punish your skin by trying to substitute with soap, which may lead to dryness and irritation. Instead, opt for skin-soothing olive oil. Not only does it make it easier for a razor to glide over your face or legs, but it will also help to moisturize your skin at the same time.

7 / 12
sugar bowl

7. Soothe a burned tongue

That slice of piping-hot pizza sure looked great, but ouch! You burned your tongue when you bit into it. To relieve a tongue burned by hot pizza, coffee, tea or soup, reach for the sugar bowl and sprinkle a pinch or two of sugar over the affected area. The pain will begin to subside immediately.

8 / 12
green tea

8. Soothe sore nipples

If breast-feeding your baby is leaving your nipples sore, treat them to an ice-cold bag of tea. Just brew a cup of tea, remove the bag and place it in a cup of ice for about a minute. Then place the wet tea bag on the sore nipple and cover with a nursing pad under your bra for several minutes while you enjoy a cup of tea. The tannic acid in the wet tea will soothe and help heal the sore nipple.

9 / 12

9. Relieve a sunburn

For quick, temporary relief of mild sunburn pain, apply cold plain yogurt. The yogurt adds much needed moisture, while its coldness soothes the skin. Rinse with cool water.

Need some extra relief? Try these 10 sunburn soothing tips.

10 / 12
yogurt

9. Relieve a sunburn

For quick, temporary relief of mild sunburn pain, apply cold plain yogurt. The yogurt adds much needed moisture, while its coldness soothes the skin. Rinse with cool water.

Need some extra relief? Try these 10 sunburn soothing tips.

11 / 12
peppermint tea

10. Make soothing mouthwash

To ease toothache or other mouth pain, rinse your mouth with a cup of hot peppermint tea mixed with a pinch or two of salt. Peppermint is an antiseptic and contains menthol, which alleviates pain on contact with skin surfaces. To make peppermint tea, boil 1 tablespoon of fresh peppermint leaves in a cup of water and steep for several minutes.

To see what else tea can do for you, check out these 7 herbal teas that will make you healthier.

12 / 12
extraordinary uses

More homemade health remedies

Extraordinary Uses for Ordinary Things will teach you how to use the stuff you already have on hand in surprising, ingenious new ways. Did you know that a popular kids’ drink can clean your dishwasher? That tomato ketchup can make your silver sparkle? That aspirin can revive a dead car battery? Or that a banana peel can double as a quick and free shoe-shine? With a bow to our resourceful forefathers and mothers, this incredible book that’s anything but ordinary shows you how to unlock the secret powers and multiple uses for dozens of common household items.

Available now in the Best Health Store.

Related:
5 strange-but-true health cures
10 foods you should eat every day
Natural home remedies