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What Are Uses for Food-Grade Hydrogen Peroxide?

by
author image Owen Pearson
Owen Pearson is a freelance writer who began writing professionally in 2001, focusing on nutritional and health topics. After selling abstract art online for five years, Pearson published a nonfiction book detailing the process of building a successful online art business. Pearson obtained a bachelor's degree in art from the University of Rio Grande in 1997.
What Are Uses for Food-Grade Hydrogen Peroxide?
A group of dirty dishes and glasses in a kitchen Photo Credit bbbrrn/iStock/Getty Images

Overview

The hydrogen peroxide available in drugstores can be used for some topical applications, but it contains stabilizers such as phenol and acetanilide. This type of hydrogen peroxide should not be taken orally, says Dr. David D. Williams in "The Many Benefits of Hydrogen Peroxide." Only food-grade hydrogen peroxide should be used internally. Food-grade hydrogen peroxide comes in a 35 percent concentration -- the rest is water -- and it must be diluted to a 3 percent concentration. To dilute, combine one ounce of hydrogen peroxide with 11 ounces of distilled water. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration warns that consuming 35 percent food-grade hydrogen peroxide may cause serious health consequences, and even death.

Cancer

Food-grade hydrogen peroxide may help kill cancer cells, says R. Webster Kehr, a researcher for the Independent Cancer Research Foundation. Cancer cells are thought to spread when little oxygen is available, while increased exposure to oxygen causes the spread of cancer cells to slow, and sufficient oxygen can kill cancer cells. Researchers believe that cancer cells cannot break down the oxygen atoms in hydrogen peroxide, so those oxygen atoms can effectively kill cancer cells. Never self-treat a cancer condition with hydrogen peroxide. Speak to your oncologist and physician before trying any form of alternative treatment.

Insecticide

You can use food-grade hydrogen peroxide to make an inexpensive, safe insecticide, says Dr. Williams. Place 8 ounces of food-grade hydrogen peroxide diluted to 3 percent in a 2-gallon watering can, and add a gallon of water and 8 ounces of white sugar.

Emphysema

Dr. Williams explains that food-grade hydrogen peroxide can be used to reduce emphysema symptoms. Mix 1 ounce of 35 percent concentrated hydrogen peroxide with 1 gallon of unchlorinated water in a vaporizer to improve breathing during the night. Hydrogen peroxide may also be administered intravenously. According to Dr. Williams, hydrogen peroxide can help break up mucous and infection in the lungs, significantly improving breathing. Speak to your physician before using hydrogen peroxide to treat emphysema symptoms.

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