Eating healthy comes with a few side effects. Some of them are fantastic such as increased energy, losing extra fat, lowering of cholesterol and blood pressure to protect against heart disease and much more. Healthier living includes much more fresh fruits and vegetables, but the downside is how some of the peels, rinds and leftovers of healthy eating can wreak havoc on your garbage disposal. Here is how to keep your garbage disposal from clogging or seizing as you continue to eat healthy foods.

Run the Water

Turn on the water before you turn on the garbage disposal. The water helps prevent vegetable matter from making a thick paste inside the disposal that can lead to a clog. If you have somehow let any rice or pasta go down, it can also help remove the starch so that it is less likely to stick to the pipes.

Oils and Fats Can Be a Problem

A little oil that remains liquid at room temperature is not likely to cause your garbage disposal to clog. However, meat fats, shortening and coconut oil that are solid or semi-solid at room temperature should not be put down the drain. When they are warmed, they flow easily. However, they turn into a gunky mess and act as a paste to create a hard mass when mixed with vegetable fibers, which can clog your pipes and make you have to call a plumber like those at Bishop Plumbing Heating and Cooling to come and take care of the mess.

Do Not Stuff the Garbage Disposal Full

Filling the cutting chamber too full of any disposable item can cause garbage disposals to clog or seize. Heavy materials, such as rinds or potato peelings, can cause clogs and prevent the impeller disk from being able to be rotated by the electric garbage disposal motor. The peelings from a single potato are not likely to be an issue, but cooking potatoes for a family usually involves several potatoes and that is enough to cause a lot of damage. Plunging rarely clears a potato peel clog in a garbage disposal, and manual removal of the peelings from the disposal and P-trap will likely need to be done.

Composting Is a Better Option

Composting is an easy and eco-friendly alternative to using a garbage disposal. Vegetable and fruit matter can be composted with egg shells, coffee and tea grounds, and outdoor clippings and trimmings of plants. Just avoid meat and pet waste. The soil that develops from composted material is so rich in nutrients that it is referred to as “black gold” among gardeners. You do not have to garden to compost. Using a garden fork to regularly turn over and aerate your compost pile, you can make nutrient-rich compost to give away to gardeners or use to amend the soil of your house plants. Seeing the process may encourage you to plant your own garden to enjoy fresh produce.

Eating healthy is tough to maintain in the busy world of work, school and home life. However, limiting processed foods and eating more fruits and vegetables to live a healthier lifestyle is the goal of more and more people each day. So, go ahead and load up on the fiber and nutrients. Just be careful what you send down your garbage disposal during meal prep time.