Dr Akilah El – Celestial Healing Wellness Center

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5 Reasons to Avoid Plastic Containers

plastic-containers

By Joshua Corn

The great American novelist Norman Mailer once said, “I sometimes think that there is a malign force loose in the universe that is the social equivalent of cancer, and it’s plastic. It infiltrates everything. It’s metastasis. It gets into every single pore of productive life.” You would think this was a recent quote, something he might have said after the green movement became popular. But no – he said this in 1983, before America’s obsession with everything plastic was even close to reaching its peak. What amazing foresight he had.

Plastic has its role in modern society. It’s an essential part of our cars, computers, mobile phones, children’s toys – and practically most everything we use on a day-to-day basis. But there’s one place where plastic has worn out its welcome – and that’s as a container for the food we eat and the water we drink.

The bottom line is that plastic is made from toxic materials. It’s a known fact that these toxins can leach into whatever they come into contact with. And it’s a known fact that when the compounds that make up plastic are ingested, they damage your body on a cellular level and cause health problems.

The pundits will say that the human body can easily handle the “small” amounts (which the government insultingly likes to call “acceptably safe levels”) of toxins that are ingested from plastic. But I find this excuse to be one of the world’s biggest cop-outs. If the human body wasn’t designed to ingest plastic, then no amount is good. Period.

Here are 5 reasons why you should avoid plastic containers:

1. Toxic compounds in plastic can make you really sick.

It’s typical to suffer from a variety of health problems as you age. But is this just “part of getting older”? Or is this perhaps the result of a toxic overload in the body? It’s common knowledge that illness and disorders such as cancer, Alzheimer’s, arthritis, heart disease, vision impairment and many others health problems are all on the rise. Could this be in some way associated with the increasing amount of plastic in our lives? Plastic food and beverage containers became popular fairly recently (in the 1970s) and have become ubiquitous in our lives since then. More and more research is proving that toxic compounds found in plastic cause health problems ranging from cancer to infertility.

2. There’s no such thing as a safe plastic.

Plastics that contain the super toxic compound bisphenol A (BPA) have been in the news a lot lately. And for this reason, consumers have been duped into thinking that if a product is “BPA-free” it’s perfectly safe. But this is a lie. Lots of companies have caught on to the fact that they can sell more of a product if it’s labeled as “BPA-free.” But guess what? It may be BPA-free, but in its place, these companies are using BPS, a close cousin of BPA that may be equally as toxic! The bottom line is – you can’t 100% trust that any plastic doesn’t contain compounds that are toxic to your body.

3. Plastics can cause fertility and reproductive problems.

The ability to produce a healthy child is a wondrous miracle and an amazing event in one’s life. But toxic compounds found in plastic could be making this difficult, if not impossible, for millions of people. What was once speculation is now becoming fact as more and more research is proving that this is a very real problem. For example, almost all plastics contain toxic chemicals that have a negative effect on immunity and hormone regulation, both of which directly affect fertility. Specifically, BPA has been found to make it more difficult for women to conceive and to cause increased risk of miscarriages. New research is also showing that toxins found in plastic can cause birth defects and developmental problems in children.

4. Chemicals in plastic can make you fat.

There are lots of reasons why nearly two-thirds of American adults are either overweight or obese. But one of them may be the vast amounts of plastics our food and beverages come in contact with. After all, America is the world’s largest consumer of disposable plastic containers. Interesting new research published in Environmental Health Perspectives explains that a chemical widely used in plastics, called bisphenol A diglycidyl ether (BADGE), may actually cause stem cells to become fat cells. According to one of the study’s authors, “Exposure to these kinds of chemicals can reprogram your metabolism and make it more likely for you to store calories instead of passing them through.” Have you found that losing weight is next to impossible, despite eating less and exercising more? Perhaps it’s chemicals in plastics that make losing weight harder than it needs to be.

5. Plastics are just terrible for our planet.

Whether you are a hardcore environmentalist or if being “green” is low on your list of priorities, the fact of the matter is that you live on planet Earth, and so will your children and your children’s children. We all have a responsibility to keep the planet has livable as possible. Firstly, plastics are in most cases made from petrochemicals through an energy intensive process that itself creates lots of pollution and toxic discharge. The fact is, every plastic container you use is making the planet less habitable. Also, most plastic in the world is not recycled and usually ends up in landfills, where it degrades very slowly. According to Wikipedia, “Since the 1950s, one billion tons of plastic have been discarded and may persist for hundreds or even thousands of years.”

What Are Your Best Solutions?

Like I said earlier, plastics are a nearly unavoidable part of our everyday lives. But there is a big difference between the plastic on your computer and the plastic that may come into contact with your lunch. You don’t eat your computer. The best solution, which is affordable, convenient and really safe is glass and certain types of metal. Here are some great solutions I’ve found. (I am providing links to Amazon.com for your convenience, but you can find these items at many stores.)

  • Break-proof glass water bottles: This glass water bottle has a rubber coating that prevents breakage. It makes water taste amazing! I take mine everywhere I go and it helps me avoid using plastic water bottles.
  • Stainless steel straws: My kids don’t use plastic straws anymore, and instead use these stainless steel straws.
  • Stainless steel containers: Dump your plastic Tupperware and instead go for stainless steel containers. Glass containers are great too, but most of them still have plastic lids.
  • Glass water coolers: If you have a water cooler at your home or office, more and more companies are offering glass containers instead of plastic ones.
  • Alternative to non-stick cookware: The coating on your non-stick cookware may be a type of plastic. Instead choose ceramic cookware or enameled cast iron.

Sneaky Sources of BPA

Even if you remove all plastic from your food and water supply, there are still some sneaky ways that highly toxic BPA can find its way into your life. Here are the most common:

  • Cash register receipts: This usually shocks most people. But if you handle a receipt with your hands, then eat your food with your hands, BPA is getting in your system. Avoid receipts or wash your hands immediately after touching one.
  • The lining of most canned foods. Luckily, we’ve written a buyer’s guide that will help you find the brands that don’t use BPA.
  • Some baby bottles and pacifiers
  • Many toys and other children’s products
  • Some aluminum water bottles (stainless steel is generally safe)
  • Canned soda and beer

You can click here to read my appeal to the U.S Government to ban BPA now!

 

About the Author

Josh CornJoshua Corn is the Editor-in-Chief of the natural health and wellness site, Live in the Now. Josh is a health freedom advocate and veteran of the natural health industry. He has been actively involved in the natural health movement for over 15 years, and has been dedicated to the promotion of health, vitality, longevity and natural living throughout his career. Josh has successfully overcome several personal health challenges through natural means, and believes that sharing information can empower people to take control of their health so they can solve their own problems and live life to its fullest potential. Josh is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Live in the Now. Additionally he serves as CEO of SAN, a company that has been formulating premium dietary supplements since 1995. Josh is currently working on his first book about natural health, and gearing up to launch the Live in the Now radio show. In addition to his work in the natural health field, Josh is an avid outdoorsman, yoga practitioner, animal lover and father of two sons who remind him every day to “live in the now”.

Don’t Try This Beauty Treatment at Home

12-fireBy 

Whoever coined the phrase “Beauty hurts” obviously had the latest Chinese spa treatment in mind. A beauty ritual called Huǒ liáo (meaning fire treatment) that’s lauded for curing everything from dull skin around the eyes to obesity has spread like, er, fire around the blogosphere after a photo of a woman with her face ablaze was posted to the Chinese message board tt.mop.

The photo is captioned: “My mom went to get her face done at the beauty salon so I went with her. What I saw… instantly shocked me… I couldn’t look.”

We don’t blame her. Huǒ liáo allegedly involves soaking a towel with a “secret elixer” and alcohol and placing it on a “problem area” such as the face, legs, back, and neck and setting the towel on fire for several seconds before extinguishing it with another cloth.

While the origins of this treatment are unclear—some credit China, others Tibet— it’s said to be painless and depending on what part of the body it’s applied, reportedly flattens the stomach, boosts metabolism, smooths wrinkles, and helps combat ailments such as the common cold and flu, indigestion, insomnia, joint pain, and fever.

But this is a totally crazy way to heal—right? “If you’re asking whether I would try this myself, the answer is no,” says Jacob Teitelbaum, M.D., author of Real Cause, Real Cure. “While alcohol will help carry whatever is in the elixir into the body, it’s not really necessary to light it on fire. However, one explanation is that extreme heat triggers an adrenaline response which can shift your body’s chemistry, improving some symptoms like indigestion and slow metabolism.”

The real danger, according to Teitelbaum, is hair catching on fire or the skin developing hyper pigmentation. “You don’t want to be anyone’s first client or you might be their last,” he says.

Watch it performed by playing the video below

Are You Buying Fake or Altered Food?

Fake ingredients, deceptive labeling, cheaper food substitutes-sounds like something you’d expect from a fast food meal, right? Turns out, you could encounter food fraud with many of the everyday items you toss into your grocery cart. 

That’s because inferior-and sometimes unhealthy-ingredients in our food has reached an all-time high, according to researchers at the U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention (USP). In the last two years, the USP added nearly 800 items to their food fraud database. Everything from lemon juice to olive oil to seafood could be a big phony, based on their findings.  

fakeJUICEPomegranate Juice
This antioxidant-rich juice has been touted as heart-healthy, but it’s also expensive. To get around that, some manufacturers have been caught diluting it with water, sugar or cheaper grape or pear juice. In fact, there have been instances where pomegranate juice doesn’t even have a lot of real juice in it.

Olive Oil 
Some oils, extra virgin olive oil in particular, have been caught in the food fraud act. They can be diluted or substituted with cheaper oils to mimic the real thing, so you may not be getting what you’re paying for.

Lemon Juice 
Like other fruit juices, lemon juice can be sold as fresh or from concentrate (which can be diluted with water). But even lemon juice labeled as 100 percent pure has been found to contain citric acid. “It’s available as a chemical, and it’s very cheap,” notes Markus Lipp, Ph.D., senior director for Food Standards at the U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention. “The lemons are the most expensive ingredient, and sometimes only 10 to 30 percent is real juice, so manufacturers make three times as much money this way.”

Saffron 
This expensive spice is frequently reported to be adulterated with cheaper ingredients that are dyed to look like saffron. Not only are you wasting your money, but some of these fraudulent blends may not be fit for human consumption, according to Lipp.

Coffee 
The issue isn’t with whole bean coffee because it’s easier to recognize and know if the beans have proper form and color. “But with ground coffee, it can easily be adulterated and hard to tell what exactly is in that brown powder,” says Lipp. There have been reports of roasted chicory seeds, for example, being used as a filler. This is something that could cause allergies in unsuspecting java junkies. 

Tea-bagsTea 
Would you ever sip tea made from your front lawn? You might be and not even know it, especially if you don’t use loose leaf tea that you can see. According to the USP, tea has been found to contain lawn grass and other fern leaves. Not exactly what we’re hoping for when we curl up with a mug in the morning.

Tuna 
Tuna and other white fish, such as butterfish, have been caught in the “real” food lie. Tuna has been found to contain escolar-a cheaper, oily fish that is banned in Italy and Japan. Escolar has a high content of waxy esters that are likely to cause food poisoning called gempylotoxism or gempylid fish poisoning, according to the USP.

Jams 
To make your jam look more natural, manufacturers have been caught adding clouding agents outside the U.S., such as plasticizer Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) and other related phthalates, in place of the more expensive palm oil. These banned toxins have been linked to cancer and developmental problems in children. 

Honey 
To make a cheaper product, honey is often adulterated with a lesser quality honey. In some cases, honey has contained other sweeteners such as sucrose, sugar and high-fructose corn syrup.

 

Here is a list of our links.

Is This The World’s First 100% Organic Nation?

By Emily Mann – WakeUpWorld

The lush green valleys of Bhutan could all be converted to organic farms, if the Prime Minister gets his way.

The tiny Himalayan country of Bhutan serves as home to just 738,000 people—about the population of Alaska. But this tiny landlocked nation is on track to make one of the biggest pro-organic moves in the world.

At the June 2012 Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development, the kingdom’s prime minister, Jigmi Thinley, announced plans to convert all his nation’s agricultural land to organic farms with, he said in his speech, “the ‘raised in Bhutan’ label synonymous with ‘organically grown.’”

The country is already well on its way to organic: Two thirds of Bhutanese citizens are farmers, and many of them are organic by default, unable to afford the synthetic fertilizers and pesticides required in chemical farming. Very few of the farms are actually certified as organic, but the country has sent a number of farmers to India to study at food activist Vanadana Shiva’s organic training farm, and has asked consultants from Shiva’s farm to educate its local extension specialists so they, in turn, are better prepared to help farmers convert to organic.

Greater profits and self-sufficiency are two of the major driving forces behind the move, Thinley added in his address. Bhutan currently imports more food than it can produce, which means farmers are losing out on a valuable revenue stream. And neighboring India is experiencing “exponential growth” in demand for organic food, a demand, he said, that isn’t likely to taper off anytime soon.

Then there’s the issue of clean water. A third of Bhutan’s citizens get their water from rural sources, which can easily become polluted by chemical fertilizers, and 6 in 10 children living in rural areas do suffer from health problems that can be traced back to polluted, unsanitary water.

But the move to convert all Bhutan’s farms to organic is driven as much by those factors as it is by a desire to achieve “Gross National Happiness,” a term Bhutan’s fourth king coined three decades ago as a more important measure of success than gross national product. “The main reason why we would like to motivate rural living is because we are convinced that it is on the farm that people can find happiness amid vital communities boosted by the necessity of interdependence, active spiritual life, and daily communion with nature and other living beings,” he said.

Millions of high blood pressure patients are wrongly diagnosed

By Stephen Adams

Currently, anyone suspected of having high blood pressure is diagnosed by a GP with an inflatable arm cuff. Doctors then call the patient back for additional readings, but these are always taken at their surgery or in hospital.

New draft guidance to be published today by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (Nice) says as many as one in four people experiences a surging pulse rate on entering a GP’s surgery.

This nervous response, termed “white coat hypertension”, can significantly raise blood pressure readings and many people are being misdiagnosed as a result.

To counter this, Nice is recommending that doctors do not rely solely on readings taken in their own surgeries. After the initial assessment, a patient should be sent home and asked to wear an ambulatory blood pressure monitoring (ABPM) device.

This comprises an inflated arm cuff, similar to those used in surgeries, which takes spot readings at intervals over a 24-hour period.

Prof Bryan Williams, from Leicester University, who led the development of the new guidance, said: “This new approach would not only improve diagnosis but would ultimately be cost-saving for the NHS.”

More than 8.5 million people are registered as having high blood pressure. People with the condition are three times more likely to develop heart disease and suffer strokes as people with normal blood pressure and twice as likely to die from these.

Patients are often put on drugs to lower their blood pressure, such as beta-blockers and angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors. In 2008, the NHS in England spent £83 million on beta-blockers alone.

The drugs can have serious side effects. For example, ACE inhibitors can cause blood pressure to drop to dangerously low levels and result in kidney problems.

Nice’s guidance notes: “White coat hypertension is reported to occur in as many as 25 per cent of the population, especially where their blood pressure is close to the threshold for diagnosis. It is more common in pregnancy and with increasing age.”

This suggests that as many as 2 million people may have been wrongly diagnosed simply because they were nervous when they went into the surgery.

Prof Williams added that the new guidance would allow doctors to get the correct diagnosis more often, but warned that surgeries and clinics would not have sufficient stocks of the equipment at the start.

The Blood Pressure Association, which has been campaigning for the change for years, welcomed the move. Prof Gareth Beevers, a trustee of the charity, said the guidance should be backed up with money “to ensure ambulatory monitors are more widely available”.

But Dr Clare Gerada, chairman of the Royal College of GPs, questioned whether the new approach would be significantly more accurate.

She said: “If we were looking at lifelong treatment or uncertain diagnosis, then this device might be useful, but for the majority of patients we would take three readings anyway before starting treatment.”

Nice officials said the guidelines, which it has put out for consultation, would “significantly change the way high blood pressure is diagnosed and subsequently treated”.

Here is a list of our links.

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