Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Eliminating Yeast the Natural Way: Grapefruit Seed Extract

The next natural method that I used to strip yeast out of my cloth diapers was grapefruit seed extract {GSE}.  I ordered a small bottle of it on Amazon for around $8.  I did the tea tree oil strip while I waited for the GSE to arrive.

img_5906On another post at All About Cloth Diapers, I found information originally posted at Eco Nuts {which I carried in the Doable Diapers store} recommended GSE as the only method to get rid of yeast. Eco Nuts claims that bleach kills yeast, but not yeast spores.

“Grapefruit Seed Extract: synthesized from the seeds and pulp of the grapefruit, it’s a very broad spectrum microbicide, bactericide, fungicide, antiparasitic, and anti-viral.  Grapefruit Seed Extract is the only natural way to kill yeast spores. It also kills staph, strep, salmonella, and e.coli.  It also kills herpes and influenza!

“GSE has been tested and found to be anywhere from 10 to 100 times more effective against these offending microorganisms than chlorine bleach, tea tree oil, colloidal silver, and iodine.

“For light laundry disinfecting: use 10-15 drops per load.

For heavy disinfecting (when dealing with something nasty or resistant): ½ to 1 teaspoon of GSE to each load of laundry. Wash and dry normally.”

I used the recommended 1/2 tsp. for “something nasty or resistant”.  With the GSE, I added it along with my detergent to a hot wash.  I also did an extra rinse cycle at the end, and then line dried my diapers in the sun.

Cloth diapers

I am hoping that one of these methods has eliminated the yeast from my diapers.  I will only be able to tell by whether or not the yeast rash returns.  I will update this post in a couple of weeks to let you know how we fared! 

When I had originally contacted Kanga Care regarding the yeast rash, I also wanted to know about disinfecting my Eco Posh trainers which Elaine wears to bed.  They go into the same diaper pail, so I was concerned about cross-contamination.  I found it interesting that for these recycled, and non-color fast cloth items, Kanga Care recommended GSE!  So there must be something to it, if it is recommended for items that cannot be bleached!  Here is what Rose from Kanga Care said:

  • We recommend regular chlorine bleach for both your pockets and inserts.  For your Eco Posh, regular chlorine bleach will discolor the fabric, so you can follow this method:
  • Run a medium water level load on warm water/warm rinse.  No detergent.  Add 1 teaspoon of Grapefruit Seed Extract (GSE) at beginning of wash. After washer has filled and begins to agitate, stop the washer for 10 minutes and allow shells to soak in GSE water.  After 10 minutes start wash again and continue cycle as usual. 
  • After wash, lay in the sun to dry.
  • ***Please note, this routine is not recommended for frequent use on shells as excessive soaking and baking in the hot sun can damage elastics and other materials.
  • ½ to 1 teaspoon of GSE to each load of laundry (with your regular, recommended, detergent.) Wash and dry (in dryer on low) normally.

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