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Have you heard of the website Vitacost.com? Before a few weeks ago, I hadn’t either. Turns out it’s a treasure trove of natural, organic, green, healthy products at some of the most reasonable prices you can find anywhere. On my first visit, I was giddy over the depth of choices and instantly started filling my cart with all sorts of goodies. 

Dr. Woods Pure Black Soap With Shea Butter
Black soap is made from plantains and is naturally rich in vitamins A and E. This product is made of all natural ingredients and has no dyes or perfumes. It can be used as a body wash, shampoo, face wash, shaving lather, and more. It supposedly smoothes skin bumps and helps with acne.And the shea butter is added moisture. I intend to swap out our body wash in the shower with this product. I’ve even heard you can dilute it if you want to be more frugal. ($7.54 for 32 oz.)

Dr. Bronner’s Organic Pure Castile Liquid Soap Baby Mild Unscented
Dr. Bronner’s castile soaps have been around forever. But this is the first time I’ve purchased one. Like Dr. Woods, this is a very mild and simple soap made with organic oils. I am trying this out as a face wash; I diluted it 1:3 with water and put in a foaming dispenser with 6 drops of tea tree oil. It will also come in handy for cleaning delicate items and who knows what else! ($5.79 for 8 oz.)

Edward & Sons Bouillon Cubes Garden Veggie
I use bouillon cubes to make my own soup bases, especially cream soup for casseroles, pot pies … you know, those down-home cookin’ recipes (I have vowed to stay far far away from the Campbell’s condensed versions). Turns out the only ones available at our usual grocery store were Knorr brand, which is chock full of salt and MSG. I knew there had to be a better option out there, and Vitacost answered that prayer. We’ll see how it goes tomorrow when we try them out. ($2.69 for 8 cubes)

Garden of Life Extra Virgin Organic Coconut Oil
I’m not really sure what I’m going to use this for yet. But the health food world is very coconut oil happy right now. So I thought I should give it a shot. Maybe it will be my miracle drug too. (A bit pathetic, I know … but we’ll see who is laughing in a month when I’ve solved all of life’s problems with a dollop here and there.) So how will I use it? Skin moisturizer seems like an obvious one. It’s also an alternative cooking oil and can be used in baking. It’s touted to increase metabolism and help with digestion (anti-bacterial properties) and the list goes on. ($8.97 for 16 oz.)

Equal Exchange Organic Baking Cocoa
Cocoa is pretty self-explantory. You can make chocolatey goodness in endless forms. Once again, this purchase was due to the fact that my grocery store only carries one brand: Hershey’s. Not gonna cut it. One idea I’ve had for awhile, although the season’s kind of past, is to make my own hot cocoa mix with this (and sugar and dry milk). ($7.84 for 8 oz.)

Jason Natural PowerSmile Toothpaste Cinnamon Mint
It’s interesting to think about how we can be concerned about some things we put in our bodies and surround ourselves with, but not others. Toothpaste is one that I haven’t really cared about before. This is a fluoride free toothpaste. The debate about fluoride — its effectiveness and toxicity — is a heated one. Receiving fluoride treatments, brushing with standard toothpaste, and drinking tap water hasn’t stopped me from getting cavities. I’m not sold this poison is worth it. This toothpaste has natural ingredients that fight plaque and freshen breath. That’s pretty much all I need my toothpaste to do anyway. (Stay tuned for my teeth whitening experiment.) ($3.95 for 6 oz.)

Tom’s of Maine Tom’s Long-Lasting Care Deodorant Stick Unscented
Another natural personal care product. The Mister goes through a stick of deodorant faster than I go through a half gallon of milk (this is not really an exaggeration). I go through maybe four sticks a year. I just don’t need that much. Aluminum and parabens are common ingredients in commercial brand antiperspirant/deodorant, and some sources link them to issues such as to irritation, Alzheimer’s, and cancer (although the FDA and NIH deny these claims). But the fact is, your body does absorb the chemicals you put on it. If aluminum is a toxic metal when consumed/absorbed in excess, why would I want to put it on my body every day, when I have an alternative? ($4.45)

Vitacost Organic Cold-Milled Flaxseed
Flaxseed is another popular health food product right now, especially for the omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3s are praised for their health benefits for the heart, blood pressure, blood sugar, and tissue. It’s a healthy fat source, and in this form, you also get fiber benefits. I intend to sprinkle a tablespoon on my cereal, yogurt, oatmeal, and maybe try it in pancakes or other baked goods to get the benefits in many ways. ($3.99 for 15 oz.)

Want to check out Vitacost for yourself? Get $10 off by using this link. (No, this isn’t spam; it’s a referral program. You get $10 and I get rewarded for referring you.)